Author: Marissa Meyer
Series: Lunar Chronicles #2
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy, Dystopian
Release Date: February 5, 2013
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
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. 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 to make Prince Kai her husband, her king, her prisoner.
First Sentence: Scarlet was descending toward the alley behind the Rieux Tavern when her portscreen chimed from the passenger seat, followed by an automated voice: “Comm received for Mademoiselle Scarlet Benoit from the Toulouse Law Enforcement Department of Missing Persons.”
Before I start this review, I have to let you guys know that Scarlet is the second book I’ve given a full 5 stars to, ever, Anna and the French Kiss being the first one. Like Anna and the French Kiss, Scarlet has a flaw, but the overall book is just so good that I could care less. If you had asked me right after I read Cinder the first time if I thought that I’ll like, or love, the sequel to Cinder, my answer would definitely be a resounding no. However, after re-reading Cinder and enjoying it a lot more, I gave Scarlet a chance, and boy, I’m so glad I did as you can see from my rating.
This time, instead of only focusing on Cinder, Scarlet focuses on both Cinder and Scarlet (Scarlet is based on little Red Riding Hood if you can’t tell by the cover). If you read my review of Cinder, you’ll know that Marissa Meyer incorporated Sailor Moon into her Lunar Chronicles series. Scarlet reminds me of Raye, aka Sailor Mars, from Sailor Moon. They are both headstrong, stubborn, and mouthy, but you can’t help but love them for who they are anyway. There were moments where I was cheering for Scarlet and other moments where I just wanted to tug all my hair out because of her, but again, that’s just a part of her personality.
“When you greeted me with a gun on your doorstep,” he said, “it’s nice to know you meant it.” (216)
And Iko. She left such a good and lasting impression on me in Cinder and I didn’t expect her to ever make an appearance in Scarlet, but she did! Yay! You wouldn’t ever guess what role Iko plays in Scarlet in a million years, but man, what Iko did in the end was pure genius. Yes, you’re so smart Iko.
I obtained my copy of Scarlet from a book signing in NYC where Marissa Meyer attended, and one thing she mentioned was how she shuffled the chapters of Scaret around so each character wouldn’t outshine the other in those particular chapters. After reading Scarlet I thought she did this perfectly – while I was reading a chapter focused on Cinder, I wasn’t hoping for a chapter focused on Scarlet to appear in the next chapter; I was just enjoying what character I was reading about at that particular moment. It takes hard work to pull that off, and believe me, Marissa Meyer sure managed to pull it off. I’m sure others would agree.
“No,” he murmured, shoulders sinking. “No, I don’t think they’ve killed her. Not yet.” (264)
There were also so many plot twists in Scarlet that I didn’t see coming, and boy, that is so rare for me. I can spot a plot twist coming from a mile away and easily predict it (which was why I didn’t really enjoy Cinder the first time I read it). Marissa Meyer threw at least two crazy plot twists at me, leaving me feeling empty and hollow, thinking but that wasn’t supposed to happen! How is she going to solve this?!, eagerly reading on to find out what Marissa had up her sleeves. Let’s just say I’m pretty happy on how Scarlet ended.
And just a side note, page 203 is the page where I recognized Marissa Meyer’s true geniusness. Seriously. That page!
Scarlet’s brow was creased as she inched toward him. “Do that again.”
He took a half a step back, eyes glinting with sudden nerves. “Do what?”
Overall, if you haven’t read Cinder yet, then what are you waiting for? Go grab your own copy now! Trust me, it’s totally worth your money. If you haven’t read Scarlet yet, but have read Cinder before, I recommend you read The Queen’s Army first before starting Scarlet. You’ll see why you should read that first once you finish Scarlet. And now, off to wishing Cress would come out in bookstores asap…