My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I was disappointed with book 2, but I still liked the series. Cress is book 3, and yup. It’s official. The series has lost its luster for me. Scant progress. Scant character growth. Book 3 was essentially the same as book 2, more running away and hiding. Yeah, there were some plot twists here and there and a couple new characters, but our heroes were still running away and hiding, and doing a piss poor job of it.
+ the plot
The book started remarkably slowly considering what had happened at the end of book 2. I had hoped the momentum would persevere. The action didn’t pick up till almost a third into the book, and it only happened because our heroes let down their guard again for like the tenth time. The action lasted for a few chapters, ebbing back to boredom. Cress and Thorne’s plotline, the meat of the book, was minimally interesting because they did very little progressing the plot.
In sum, action scenes were far and few and frustrating. They only seemed to happen because our heroes could not for the sake of their lives maintain vigilance. How many times must they get ambushed before they learn to stick in group, always carry assload of weapons, make exit plans, and so forth?
Making matters worse, their plan to save the world was to crash Queen Levana and Emperor Kai’s wedding so Cinder could reveal the truth and demand the throne back in front of the cameras. Bitch please. Queen Levana would sooner grow a bouquet of flowers out of her asshole before she ever surrendered. I couldn’t believe this was the best our fairy tale heroes could come up with. Thankfully, Cinder reunited with Dr. Erland who told her straight up how incredibly stupid her plan was and gave her another plan.
The new plan was to go to Lunar and start a revolution. Bring the fight to the tyrant and bring the oppressed people hope and the truth to their face that their Princess Selene was still alive and fighting for them. Of course, like the unprepared dimwits our heroes were, they didn’t have any idea of how to do it. I kid you not when I say our heroes hoped luck would accomplish things for them. By the way they were constantly improvising, it was sure as fuck weren’t going to be through intelligence and strategy. About the only time our heroes knew what the fuck they were doing was at the climax, which was a merciful relief however brief it was.
+ the characters
Cinder & Kai: I thought Cinder experienced significant character growth at the end of book 2. I thought too optimistically. While it was frustrating watching her trying to control her Lunar abilities, what was really frustrating was watching how terribly she lead our heroes. As a cyborg, she has no excuse. Download some leadership guidebooks and stop operating on ignorance. She also should discard her silly fear of becoming like Queen Levana because of her powerful Lunar abilities. It’s fucking ridiculous how Cinder thought she could become anything like that tyrant. At this point, I don’t give a shit for realism and wish she would Mary Sue up.
At least Cinder and Kai are a perfect match. To say Emperor Kai is a terrible leader is to put it nicely. Dude’s an idiot, too idealistic for his own good. I still cannot get over the fact that he accepted Levana’s marriage proposal in book 2 and continued to think things will somehow work themselves out in book 3. The dude actually thought he was saving millions of lives by sacrificing his to the evil queen. On the bright side, he didn’t deny the sure-as-fuck chance the tyrant would kill him quickly after their exchange of “I do”s.
Scarlet & Wolf: Scarlet got captured and Wolf turned uselessly emo. Scarlet’s contribution in book 3 was to only introduce the reader to Winter, the next damsel in distress for book 4. Wolf’s contribution was to be a listless meatbag for Cinder to practice her Lunar mind control power over.
Cress & Thorne: These were the star couple of book 3, the eponymous damsel in distress and her dashing rogue of a spaceship captain. I liked Cress in the beginning because of how shamelessly honest she was of her role as a damsel in distress and how funny she was in assuming Thorne to be her knight in shining armor. Their romance poked fun at fairy tale tropes. However, the humor wore off quickly for me, and I became bored and impatient for Cress to toughen up.
Thorne, I liked. He was one of the very few characters who were useful. Even when he became blind, he didn’t let his handicap stopped him from kicking ass and rescuing Cress again. As silly as Cress was with her helplessness, dreams, and sob story, her romance with Thorne was still a big step up from Scarlet and Wolf’s angst-filled romance. Cress and Thorne were honest and open about their feelings, which is a lot more than I could say for the other fairy tale couples.
everyone else: I still loved Iko, Cinder’s sassy android. I eyerolled at Dr. Erland and his sob story, pardon my cold heart. I thought he could have done a lot more to help our heroes and his poor self, but mostly our heroes. Seriously, our dimwit heroes needed all the help they could get. I hated how the doctor succumbed to his regrets at the end. Queen Levana was still as wonderfully hate-able as ever. I had hoped for some character development and to learn how she became a tyrant, but didn’t get it. Oh well. Maybe in book 4.
I rate Cress 2-stars for it was okay. I expected too much from it, but meh. The only thing I can really say is that the book didn’t disappoint me as much as it could have, and that I haven’t lost all my excitement for the next one, unlike with the Crewel and Angelfall series.
If you loved book 1 and book 2, ignore this review and pick up book 3. You’ll likely love book 3 too.
Rapunzel’s tower is a satellite. She can’t let down her hair—or her guard.
In this third book in Marissa Meyer's bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and prevent her army from invading Earth.
Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl trapped on a satellite since childhood who’s only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s being forced to work for Queen Levana, and she’s just received orders to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.
When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is splintered. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a higher price than she’d ever expected. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai, especially the cyborg mechanic. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.
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