Genre: YA science fiction
Length: 550 pages
Setting: orbiting Earth, Africa and China, immediately after the events of Scarlet
Summary: Short version: With the help of Cress, Cinder stops the wedding between Kai and Levana
Long version: Cinder, Scarlet, Wolf, and Thorne have escaped on the Rampion into Earth orbit. They are contacted by Cress, a Lunar banished to a satellite in Earth orbit. When they attempt to rescue her, the thaumaturge Sybil attacks. She kidnaps Scarlet and takes her back to the moon. Cress and Thorne are sent to Earth in the satellite and Jacin, a Lunar guard, ends up on the Rampion. Cress and Thorne make their way through the desert back to Cinder and Wolf. Cinder comes up with a plan to stop Levana’s wedding to Prince Kai. She’s going to kidnap Kai and then reveal herself to be the rightful heir to the Lunar throne. The plan is implemented with only minor problems.
Final thoughts: I really liked this book. I’m not sure what made it better than Scarlet. It was a retelling of Rapunzel. Cress was Rapunzel, locked in a satellite looking down on Earth. She is rescued by Thorne, her knight in shining armor. Unfortunately, they’re caught by Cress’s minder, Sybil, who banishes them both. They survive the landing on Earth, but Thorne is injured and loses sight in his eyes (I had forgotten that was part of the Rapunzel story, but luckily the quote before that section reminded me) ,No one is quite sure of what to do to stop Levana. They all agree that Levana becoming Kai’s husband and Empress on Earth would be terrible. When Cinder comes up with the plan to kidnap Kai, it takes everyone’s skills to put it into play. Cress may be shy and naive, but she’s a whiz with computer systems. She thinks she’s a useless shell, but she’s been running the Lunar spy operation and keeping Lunar ships hidden for years. Wolf is pretty much taken out of the equation worrying about his alpha, Scarlet, on the moon. Unlike the others, he knows what Levana’s capable of. She delights in torturing people – typically by making them torture themselves. How do you protect yourself from someone (or a race of someones) who can so easily manipulate your mind? Perhaps we’ll find out in the last book.
Title comes from: The new character introduced
Reading challenges fulfilled: book #3 for 2020 and an M in my Author Reading the Alphabet Challenge (I’ve read three books, and I already have to use the author instead of the title)
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