A sci-fi retelling of a classic fairy-tale. Surprisingly delightful.
I enjoyed it much more than I was expecting to. Yes, it ended up going exactly where I thought it would, but it veered off in so many interesting and unexpected side routes to get there.
There is a lot of wish fulfillment going on, but it was okay with the fairy-tale backbone. Cider is naturally the dirty mechanic with a greater destiny. She is also a cyborg which makes her very cool, but discriminated against in her own world. There is a whole thing of cyborgs being sub-human. It is a little disturbing as they are basically disable people with advanced prosthetics.
The world building wasn’t intrusive and I had to remind myself now and again that it’s Sci-Fi and set in the future. Perhaps it’s because it’s not filled with technobabble as is the norm for most Sci-Fi stories. I like the concept of New Beijing as it adds a flavour that has been seen before, but makes it its own.
Although there is some dark subject matter (a plague for instance), I found the tone to be light and enjoyable. Perhaps my reading has been a little dark these last few weeks.
The relationship between Cinder and the Prince is cute and something I’m rooting for. Most of the characters lived up to what was expected of them – remembering that this is based on the Cinderella fairy-tale. The exception being Peony. Her character surprised me the most and was the basis for some of the more touching moments.
Summing up: I will be following Linh Cinder’s adventures further.