The Little Android is a retelling of The Little Mermaid, set in the world of The Lunar Chronicles by New York Times-bestselling author Marissa Meyer.
When android Mech6.0, saves the life of a handsome hardware engineer, her body is destroyed and her mechanics discover a glitch in her programming. Androids aren’t not meant to develop unpractical reasoning or near-emotional responses…let alone fall in love.
First sentence: “Mech6.0 stood against the hangar’s charging wall, one of hundreds of mute sentinels watching the passengers flutter by with their hovering luggage carts and excited chatter.”
We get a Little Mermaid story!
The fates of Cinder and Scarlet collide as a Lunar threat spreads across the Earth…
Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.
Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.
First sentence: “Scarlet was descending toward the alley behind the Rieux Tavern when her postscreen chimed from the passenger seat, followed by an automated voice: ‘Comm recieved for Mademoiselle Scarlet Benoit from the Toulous Law Enforcement Department of Missing Persons.'”
Scarlet made me fall in love with this series. Absolutely head over heels. Sure, Cinder initiated my fascination with this series and its world, but Scarlet cemented my love for it.
This book follows Scarlet as she searches for her missing grandmother with the help of Wolf, and Cinder and Captain Thorne as they try to avoid being caught (‘cause y’know, they’re fugitives) and to find someday who can help them out on their journey. I’m sure you can guess that the new characters — Scarlet and Wolf — are based off of Little Red Riding Hood. I really love this adaptation of the story because gahhhh, Scarlet. Wolf. *dreamy sighs*
It is time. The boy must leave his family to serve in the Queen’s army. To be chosen is an honor. To decline is impossible. The boy is modified. He is trained for several years, and learns to fight to the death. He proves to the Queen—and to himself—that he is capable of evil. He is just the kind of soldier the Queen wants: the alpha of his pack.
First sentence: “They came at the end of the long night, when the manufacturing dome had not seen sunlight for almost two weeks.”
Oh, darling, Ze’ev (Z).
I have so much love for this short story. It is about Ze’ev’s induction into, you guessed it, the Queen’s army at the age of twelve. It follows him as he adjusts to the modifications and “improvements” to his body that will eventually help the Queen. His days are filled with endless training and fighting; none of which he particular likes.
My heart goes out to him because he’s, y’know,. (I just fall in love with his character over and over again.) He isn’t a mindless soldier, doing his job. He shows that he is against the way the pack is run, but keeps quiet because of the consequences. He doesn’t win all his fights, but he’s a good fighter who is exceptional at defending himself. At the end of the novella, he regains most of the control that was taken from him. It’s really frickin’ awesome.
I love the tension between the brothers. Ran wants nothing to do with Z even though they’re in the same pack. Ran feels like he’s living in Z’s shadow again. It’s really not Z’s fault. It’s sad that Z’s only family member refuses to have anything to do with him. It makes me excited to see how their relationship will develop in the next book.
The Queen’s Army is a great introduction to what exactly these soldiers are doing before they are sent to complete an important mission for Queen Levana, and to Z, who plays an important role in Scarlet.
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.
First sentence: “The screw through Cinder’s ankle had rusted, the engraved cross marks worn to a mangled circle.“
Guys, this book was a pleasant surprise. I hadn’t expected to like it because whenever somebody recommends me a YA series, I don’t find myself loving it as much as others do, but Cinder is a different case. I was sucked into the world and had to know what happened. I do dislike some things in Cinder, but my likes exceeds those dislikes. I was struck by so many overwhelming feelings that I couldn’t identify until the end. Cinder is a great retelling of the old classic Cinderella. The story is very familiar, but still different and unique, especially since Marissa Meyer is a gifted storyteller. The concept of futuristic fairy tales intrigue me, and why shouldn’t it? Who would’ve thought that I would enjoy a book that has a cyborg? Cyborgs, everyone! Androids, friendships, technology, political struggle, a female character who is a fabulous mechanic, all the good stuff! Surely, makings of a good story, right? Yes, absolutely!
- The fairy tale influences + sci-fi elements –
You should know that I never like reading fairytale retellings because I don’t find them interesting or innovative. They usually bore me. However, I am blown away by how different, yet familiar Cinder‘s story is to the Cinderella story. Every time there’s a section that’s reminds me of Cinderella, I love the way Marissa Meyer incorporates the sci-fi element (which she does beautifully). I like that Cinder isn’t strictly based on Cinderella. I can see a bit of Sailor Moon in the story and that fills me with so much joy. Who knew a cyborg would be a great character in a fairytale? Not me. It works so well.
- Technology + mechanics –
Me + technology + mechanics = ???? I’m extremely clueless when it comes to anything to deals with having to fix an electronic device or a vehicle. Usually, when I read those, I zone out because I don’t find it interesting. However, I was strangely fascinated by the descriptions of Cinder fixing the androids or taking her foot off and replacing it. I guess I liked seeing what fixing it entails? My face was practically glued to my book when I read any technological + mechanical stuff that Cinder did. I love the idea of Cinder as a mechanic. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book where the female character is a mechanic and that is sad because fixing things can be interesting.
- Friendships –
Always love them! I love that Cinder actually has friends. She isn’t by herself; she has Peony, her stepsister, and Iko, her stepfamily’s android. Peony is a sweetheart. I love that she accepts Cinder for who she is and never treats her differently or badly because Cinder isn’t fully human. And Iko is just a ball of enthusiasm and positivity. She gets excited about things and can feel emotions (which she shouldn’t be able to but she has a glitch). She’s really good to have on your side, especially when you are just bitter about your life or the world. Because she’s an android, she has extremely simple logic. At times, she gets annoying because of her optimism, but she’s hilarious. I find it awesome to see that Cinder has people/android who love her.
- Cyborgs/Androids + Humans + Lunar interactions/conflict –
The interactions between cyborgs, androids, humans, and Lunar’s are truly fascinating. In my review of Glitches, I talked about my fascination with androids/cyborgs and humans, and I’m happy to see that the interactions are expanded in Cinder. You get to see the difference between Iko, an android that has feelings, and a med-android who strictly does what’s in its program. I like that the political struggle between Luna and the Commonwealth is very realistic and relatable. The things that happen in the book happen in the real life too. You see countries try to maintain peace with each other (some with and some without success). You see people escape from their country because of an oppressive regime (in Cinder, Lunar people and shells escape to Earth because of Queen Levana). All the interactions are what I see in everyday life in the news.
- The familial relationships –
Strangely, I find myself interested in the dynamics between Cinder and her stepmother, Adri. Yes, Adri’s treatment of Cinder makes me incredibly angry. Every time she or Pearl, Cinder’s older stepsister makes disparaging remarks about Cinder, I want to punch them in the face. Despite my anger towards them, I find their relationship complex. I understand that it is easy to blame the person who seems to be the center of all the shit things that’s happening in your life. That’s what Adri’s doing. She projects onto Cinder because that’s the only thing she can control – her feelings – when she can’t do anything to prevent her husband and daughter from contracting Letumosis. Also, she needs Cinder to provide for the family; Cinder is the only source of income. It makes me feel bad for her. I wonder what that means for Adri when she no longer has a punching bag or a source of income.
- To like Prince Kai –
I wanted to like him, but I was pretty meh about him. Sure, I liked seeing Kai’s struggle with being an emperor and seeing how his inexperience makes him feel insecure. I like that he wasn’t a cocky guy, who thought he knew all the answers. He’s still a kid who wants to do good for the Commonwealth while trying to prevent a war from happening. However, I didn’t feel any spark for this guy or any spark between him and Cinder. I thought his interactions with Cinder were okay. I didn’t find myself falling over my feet for Kai, which is truly disappointing. I think it’s because I don’t find his personality very interesting. I didn’t like the way he treated Cinder at the end, but his reaction is perfectly understandable especially since it’s a major betrayal to him. Kai hasn’t done anything that warrants my devotion, or Cinder’s attention.
- For the book to be less predictable –
I wasn’t surprised by any of the big reveals. Usually, I do not pick up on obvious hints and foreshadowing of where the plot is going, but with Cinder, I knew early on what was going to happen (which Marissa Meyer noted at the Fierce Reads event that readers are suppose to know right away) and it took me out of the book. I think I really wanted a more suspense that the book didn’t give me. It bothered me that something was revealed in the synopsis, which I would rather preferred to find out in the book because I don’t like the overwhelming feeling that comes from knowing that something bad will happen. That anticipation is the worst feeling for me (but it’s really good tactic).
Yes, retellings of fairy tales can be boring, but I assure you, Cinder is not. Four words: sci-fi fairy tales! Marissa Meyer weaves the retelling of Cinderella (which also has a hint of Sailor Moon) beautifully. You also get cyborgs, androids, political struggle, a life-threatening disease called Letumosis. When I finished this book, I became overwhelmed by all the fairytale influences and whatnots because I finally identified it (yeah, late reaction, I know). It’s a good introduction to Cinder’s plight. You should go read it (just so you can get to Scarlet, which I hear is 100000 times better than Cinder and I have to agree).
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.
In Glitches, a short prequel story to Cinder, we see the results of that illness play out, and the emotional toll that takes on Cinder. Something that may, or may not, be a glitch…
First sentence: “Are you ready to meet your new family?”
Man, I am completely hooked.
In Glitches, Cinder, an eleven-year-old girl with mechanic limbs, is taken to New Beijing by her new stepfather, Garan, a man who she isn’t related to, for a new life. There, Cinder meets her new stepmother, Adri, and her two stepsisters, Pearl (who is the oldest and isn’t featured heavily in the novella) and Peony (who is the youngest and welcomes Cinder with open arms). We get to see how the household
adjust don’t adjust to Cinder and then, something tragic happens.
The Lunar Chronicles world is extremely fascinating, especially seeing the dynamics between the humans and androids. I think it’s interesting how an android is treated like they’re a second-class citizen (or someone who is disposable) even though they are apart of the family. To be treated like that, is that just? It certainly brings up the issue of a specific glitch that both Cinder and Iko, an android that Cinder put back together, share — whether androids/cyborgs/machines feel emotions. I like that Cinder is exceptionally skilled at fixing things, not housework. I’m just imagining what she could do for the family. Eek. So many things.
After I read this novella, I had so many questions. I wonder why Garan, Cinder’s stepfather, decided to take Cinder in. I feel like it’s more than wanting another child or even wanting a child to have a place they call home. I don’t know if the first book will address it, but I certainly hope so. Is Adri’s dislike for Cinder because the family has to spend more money that they don’t have to provide for another person/being or because she views androids/cyborgs as not human (so they shouldn’t be treated that way)? What was Garan doing to contract letumosis? What was he planning to unveil at the Tokyo Fair? Lots of questions, people! (Tell me some will be answered in Cinder).
I can’t wait to start Cinder. I know my BFF (and everyone here) will be excited that I have started the series. Go read this novella if you haven’t. It’s extremely short and worth every bit of your time. If you don’t, my android friend will arrive on your doorstep and force you to read it in its presence. You will sweat bullets.