Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl… Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

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First, let me give a big THANK YOU to Marissa Meyer and the amazing group at Pub(lishing) Crawl, who sent me a signed copy of Cinderas part of a recent giveaway! The only thing better than an amazing book is an amazingfree, signed book! 😉

Cinder, in a nutshell, is riveting, suspenseful, unique, and swoon-worthy. And I’m not sure those words are really sufficient. For a slightly extended version, keep reading. (Warning: There may be slight spoilers in the first several sentences):

Set in the New Beijing Commonwealth after WWIV, Cinder is a loose re-telling of the classic story of Cinderella. It has all of the classic elements:

1. (Step)-father who has died, leaving step-daughter at the mercy of the step-mother

2. Evil step-mother

3. Two step-sisters (though only one is “evil”)

4. A trusty side-kick (though not a band of mice)

5. A forbidden ball to attend

6. Prince Charming

Cinder is left part human, part cyborg after a fiery hover crash in which she not only lost her parents, but also her memory of her life before the crash. She is adopted by a family in New Beijing, where humans and androids intermingle and a Letumosis plague is running rampant.. Shortly after she arrives to her new home, her step-father, Garan, is infected with Letumosis, taken away, and dies soon thereafter. Her evil step-mother, Adri, resents and blames her for the death of Garan and essentially makes Cinder into a household slave. She is forced to work as a mechanic to provide for the family, and to wait hand-and-foot on Adri and her two step-sisters. Cinder is friendless, except for her youngest step-sister, Peony, and the household android assistant, Iko.

Sounds miserable, right? It gets worse.