Jasmine Huang T2

A Science Fiction novel by Marissa Meyer

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Cinder takes place several hundred years in the future. Word War III and World War IV have taken place and Earth is split into 6 countries: the Commonwealth, the American Republic, Australia, the United Kingdom, the African Union, and the European Federation as a result. There is also a country on the Moon, named Luna. Cinder happens in the capital of the Commonwealth, named New Beijing.


The technology on Earth and the Moon is very advanced after 2 world wars. Androids help humans complete tasks, and sometimes, they can become friends like Cinder's android, Iko. Hovercrafts or hovercars are used for major transportation on Earth and sometimes in space. People also use portscreens which are futuristic versions of smartphones.


Lunars were originally a human colony from Earth sent to the Moon, but they gradually evolved and gained a talent for controlling bioelectricity, an energy produced by all living things. They can manipulate it so that people see and feel whatever that Lunar wants them to see or feel. Most Lunars are manipulative and power-hungry because of this. But, Lunars can't control mirrors or cameras, so they hate being around them. If a Lunar doesn't use their gift, they will eventually go insane. Lunars are also immune to letumosis, but this makes them carriers of the disease. They also have advanced technology and medicine, such as the cure to letumosis.

Some Lunars can't control bioelectricity and can't be controlled by bioelectricity, so they are called Lunar Shells.


Cinder, a cyborg, is the best mechanic in New Beijing. This reputation brings Prince Kai to Cinder's shop, asking her to fix an android with important information on Princess Selene, the only hope to overthrowing Queen Levana. That day, Cinder's step-sister Peony, is diagnosed with letumosis, a deadly plague, and Cinder's stepmother volunteers Cinder for the cyborg draft, where scientists test cyborgs for a cure to the plague. Queen Levana arrives at New Beijing Palace a few days before Kai's annual ball and Dr. Erland, the head researcher for the cyborg draft tells Cinder to stay away from the palace. He reveals that Cinder is a Lunar Shell and will be killed by Levana if she finds out about her. Cinder fixes Kai's android and goes to the palace to deliver it, but she accidentally catches the attention of Queen Levana. Levana knows that Cinder is a Lunar and tells Kai that he has 1 month to find all the Lunars in the city and bring them to Luna to be executed. Before the ball, Cinder finds out that Queen Levana is going to marry Kai and murder him to gain control of the Commonwealth, and risks her life by going to the ball and delivering the information to him. Unfortunately, Cinder gives him the information but Levana reveals that she is a cyborg and a Lunar. Cinder tries to escape, but is captured by Levana's guards. Luckily, Dr. Erland helps her escape from the prison. He reveals to Cinder that she is actually Princess Selene and asks her to come to Africa so they can create a plan to overthrow Queen Levana.

Linh Cinder

Cinder is a cyborg that lives with an adoptive family, the Linhs. She doesn't remember anything about her past or former family; she only knows that her parents were killed in a deadly car crash that also made her lose a hand and a leg. Cinder was saved with complex technology by installing robotic parts in place of her missing limbs, and she also now has a control panel that allows her to download information, notify herself if she is unwell, and detect lies. Additionally, she has a bioelectrical security system that keeps her from being manipulated by Lunars and keeps her from manipulating the bioelectricity of others. This has helped her hide the fact that she is Princess Selene, niece of Queen Levana.

Cinder is generally friendly to people and is usually a tomboy. But, she has a soft spot for Prince Kai.

Prince Kai

Kai's mother was killed by letumosis, and his father died from it soon after. He became emperor at a young age, but he has his common sense and his advisor, Torin. Kai is usually kind-hearted, but he hates Lunars for the awful things that they have done.

Queen Levana

Queen Levana comes from the royal family on Luna and will stop at nothing to gain control of the Moon and Earth. She killed Queen Channary and attempted to murder Princess Selene. Levana wants to marry Prince Kai to gain control of the Commonwealth, but many believe that she will try to conquer all the other countries and rule Luna and Earth.

Queen Levana is vain and very concerned about her appearance. She uses her Lunar gift to make herself more beautiful than anyone else. Levana hates mirrors, and if she needs to be on camera, she covers her true appearance with a veil.

My Thoughts

I thought Cinder and Prince Kai were both great characters. Cinder is smart and resourceful, but she still has some vulnerabilities. The way she deals with them makes her an interesting character. I also like how Prince Kai is not a stereotype prince. He doesn't make impulsive decisions and doesn't let people walk all over him.

On the other hand, I didn't like how the foreshadowing in Cinder wasn't that strong. Everything was mostly obvious.

Images are from Lostie815 and wadaka on DeviantArt.