Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Cress (Lunar Chronicles #3)
by Marissa Meyer
Publishing: 2.4.14 from Feiwel and Friends
Pages: 560

Rapunzel’s tower is a satellite. She can’t let down her hair—or her guard. 
In this third book in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army. 
Their best hope lies with Cress, who has been trapped on a satellite since childhood with only her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker—unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice. 
When a daring rescue goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing stop her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only ones who can.
Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher free of charge, in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation for this review.
One thing that never ceases to amaze me is Marissa's knowledge of fairy-tales and herdeft ability to work them together; including small details of the original stories that might be skipped over in a retelling. From the start this aspect of Cress had me squealing in joy. What can I say but that I'm a nerd over the fact that certain things from the original happened. Actually cut that, I'm a nerd over this book. Cress was literally perfection. One of the BEST sequels I have ever read. And I'm not just saying that. From the get-go we are pulling into an intense action and plot twists that rip your heart out. And from then on it's the must epic, un-put-downable-ride ever.
Starting with the obvious....Cress. She's our new protagonist and so much fun. She's been living a life in seclusion, but she's not just some dumb girl who sings her heart out all day to the birds. Of course, that would be impossible. She lives in a satellite. Heck yeah, SPACE. On top of that she's a hacker. A brilliant one! Cress is a genius when it comes to technology, just as much as Cinder is when it comes to mechanics. I loved seeing her skills come out in the beginning. And Little Cress! She's such a small part but I loved her just as much as Iko(Who I shall quickly mention is so awesome)! But more than her spacey-tech skills, Cress is strong and when she's finally free she does things. She takes action and wants to see things done despite being in a strange new place. She's smart and witty and fun and it's not hard to grow to love her over the course of this book.

Along with her hacking abilities, Cress brings in the fairy-tale aspect of Rapunzel and it was so much fun to read about. I've always loved that fairytale, and know the original story very well. This is where it goes back to my nerdy geek side. If you know the original tale, you'll know that the prince is pushed from the tower and lands in a group of thorny bushes which blinds him, until he's later healed by Rapunzels tears when they are reunited.
I don't know WHY I got so flipping excited when this aspect was portrayed in Cress (Oops, spoiler alert). But I did. Seeing the little things like this throughout the entire series made me appreciate them even more, because Marissa not only tells a great story that is original and a fairy-tell retelling mashup, but she shows us that she KNOWS her fairy-tales and doesn't just want them to be "that other retelling." She has respect and love for them just as much as the next fan. *deep sentimental author love moment*

"Captain?"
"Yeah?"
"Do you think it was destiny that brought us together?"
He squinted, and after a thoughtful moment, shook his head. "No, I'm pretty sure it was Cinder."

Anyway so this Prince. Because there can't be a new girl without her guy right? Of course right! If you've read Scarlet, you've met him as the infamous Captain Carswell Thorne, comedic relief of the gang and quite the scoundrel. Watching these two be thrown together was hilarious, entertaining and just all around wonderful. Cress knows lots of things, including lots about this guy, and it presents a new side to one of the relationships in this books. Plus the circumstances they are thrown into just makes things awkward, hilarious and endears you even more to the characters until you find yourself riveted and so in love with.
 Thorne goes through so much character development in this book. Watching love change him was so fun. He's still filled with laughs and jokes, but he's stronger and caring and he has more than his ship and his life to live for. He has a cause now and it's soooo beautiful. (He's like the Kristoff of the story!)
I just want to squeal around the house every time I think of Thorne. Especially since I can pinpoint the page (279) and quote where I was officially in a bookmance with Thorne. It will make much more sense when you've read the book:

"If you honestly believe that," said Thorne, stowing the gun again, "then you really don't recognize true value when you see it."

But of course this book was more than just Cress and Thorne. Cinder, Kai and Dr. Erland play a much bigger role in this book. Scarlet and Wolf are not as prominent, but I still love them as much. They're drama gets going early on and it throws quite the wrench in the story, and the characters emotionally. *SOBS* It opens up new doors and again, brilliant storytelling. But back to Cinder and Kai. This is the book where as a reader connected to the characters, I have been the most invested in the story of Cinder and Kai. They keep on growing and developing in new ways as they try to sort out their feelings, ever changing situation and themselves. I love them to pieces and agonizing over their story was quite possibly about 50% of my feels in this book. There was one scene in particular that I was DYING to see and for those who have read it, check out my thoughts (highlight to read):

SPOILER --> [CINDER AND KAI'S REUNION IN THE LAST SCENE was literally my most anticipated scene of the whole thing. Darn that agonizing wait to get there though. But it was so perfect, I must have read it like ten times after reading it. It was beautiful and perfect and I couldn't ask for anything better. Wouldn't you agree?] <--END SPOILER

I also mentioned Dr. Erland. He is just, wow. I REALLY liked him in this book. He is also a much more prominent character and it was so fascinating to get to see much more of his backstory and how that intertwines with the rest of it. *slaps hand over mouth before the feels come gushing out* Again with the brilliant plot Marissa. Oh and then there's Queen Levana. You evil woman! She's hecka powerful and I really just hate her with a fiery passion. But I liked getting glimpses into her mind and her world. With these side plots introduced we've been set up for a bomb of a last book.
And so, with all these marvelous characters and the new themes and twists they bring, there's lots of trouble, laughter and revelations. The pretty much keep coming down until we're buried under a pile of epic waiting to be built into the most kick-butt ending to a series if I ever saw one. Also leaving me with a big load of book hangover that unfortunately my sister had to live through.
I am therefore left to conclude that the 560 pages that are Cress are some of the best 560 pages I've ever spent my time reading. It's fun, it's fast, it's flirty. Marissa knows how to take an idea and flip it inside, outside and upside down to make it her own, and then translate it into the language of the fangirl. I am blown away, and am undoubtedly left wanting more. The wait for Winter is gonna be painful, but until then at least we have Cress to drool over.
Happy Release Day CRESS! Make sure you all pick up this book if you haven't yet! What are your thoughts? Have you read this yet? Need to pick up Cinder first? Talk to me! XOXO,


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