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Monday, April 1, 2013

NICOLE'S REVIEW: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Title: Scarlet
Author: Marissa Meyer
Format Acquired: Hardcover
Publication Date: February 5 2013
Publishing House: Feiwel & Friends
ISBN: 9780312642969
Source of Copy: Purchased from Fully Booked


Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second 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. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information about 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 Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

 (Image and information courtesy of Goodreads; Summary lifted from actual book)


Because of the way Cinder ended, I've been anxiously awaiting the second book's arrival at our local bookstores. I didn't expect Meyer to throw another character into the mix. I wanted the book to focus on Cinder and her alone. It made me unsure if I wanted to continue this series because I just wasn't sold on Scarlet. As it turns out I couldn't resist getting the second book and I'm just so glad that I did.

Scarlet is a totally different heroine from Cinder, whereas Cinder is a little bit lost and unsure of herself, Scarlet is tough and knows exactly what she wants. She's on a mission to find her grandmother and she's going to do whatever it takes to get her back which means crossing paths with the Wolves - a gang of criminals who are actually soldiers under the Lunars' command. Along the way she meets Wolf, a member or ex-member of the gang, and he decides to help her on her suicide mission which takes them to the Wolves' den in Paris. 

I loved Wolf, he's just so adorable, if you could call him that. He may be a big, tough-looking guy who's an excellent and ferocious fighter but really, he's just a big softie inside. His looks are incongruent to his attitude and that somehow endeared him more to me. I just loved his interaction with Scarlet and his determination to help her find her grandmother despite the cost to himself. 

Cinder makes an appearance as well; she's breaking out of jail along with Thorne - another prisoner she met charged with robbery who just so happens to have stolen a ship - who admittedly is an interesting addition to Cinder's gang. She's just found out that she's the long lost Lunar Princess and that the Lunar queen is out to get her and she totally has no idea what to do with that information. She's on her way to look for Michelle Benoit - Scarlet's grandmother - to see if Michelle can answer qustions on her past and maybe clear up a few mysteries. She does this all while trying to dodge the authorities. She is an escapee after all. 

One thing I love about Scarlet and Cinder is the world-building. Meyer does a fabulous job of it, making it so easy to imagine the world they live in; technology, aliens, mind control powers. Another is how you can see the original storyline - Cinderella for Cinder and Red Riding Hood for Scarlet - incorporated into the books with other elements added into the fray. I just loved how everything was well thought of and blended together smoothly and how the characters are all somehow intertwined in this whole messy situation.

One thing I was hoping for was more Kai and Cinder but oh well, maybe in the next books. If you're looking for a retelling of our childhood fairytales with dystopian elements look no further than Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicles where bad guys really are bad and you can't help but root for the underdog.



  1. Great review! I still haven't read Scarlet, though of course I had to buy it the second it came out. I'm waiting for the publishing date of Cress to be closer, cause I can't deal with the wait, but your review really made me itch to open the book :)

    About the different characters - Meyer has mentioned from the beginning each book will center around an additional character (Cinder/Scarlet/Cress/Winter). I'm really looking forward to see how she'll deal with all these characters, as for each one she needs to add a romantic interest, as well, and those are lots of characters. So that's exciting.

    1. Thank you! I finished Cinder early, before there was any announcement on the characters - I kind of bought it when it came out. Same thing happened with Scarlet. Hurr. Hope you enjoy the book!