Title: Winter (The Lunar Chronicles #4)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Published: November 10th 2015 by Feiwel and Friends
In Winter we hit the ground running. Our crew has just kidnapped Kai from his palace/wedding in New Beijing and are hiding out in the Rampion from not only Luna, but Earth as well. Their planning has finally come to a head and they must begin their war against Levana and put Selene (aka Cinder) on the throne. The fact that the evil Queen can literally control their minds only complicates things a teeny bit. *Cough*.
Ohhhh my goodness, guys. This book was crazy. 823 pages of ZERO downtime. Everything that could possibly happen did happen. I seriously had anxiety for the entire book. It was 5-star material right up until the end. But do not fear! In all fairness, I think my issues with the book will be in the minority, and I can almost guarantee if you are a Lunar Chronicles fan reading this review, you will not be disappointed with Winter.
I love the Lunar Chronicles characters. I especially love that Meyer turned some pretty pathetic fairy tale women into TOTAL BADASSES. Cinder is my favorite. I think she feels the most human. Which is funny, because she’s a cyborg. She has the perfect balance of uncertainty and confidence that allowed me to believe in her. We did finally have some character development in Scarlet which I was grateful for because she was incredibly irritating to me up until this book. Somehow her character stopped being so ridiculously rageful and impulsive when she started to care for Winter and I enjoyed her so much more for it. Thorne is just the best, and he does not disappoint. His charm and humor serve as the comic relief between all of the insanity that is the plot. And let me tell you, each and every character goes through the freaking ringer in this book. In case you’ve forgotten, we now have Cinder, Kai, Wolf, Scarlet, Cress, Thorne, Iko, Jacin, Winter, AND Levana’s perspectives to bounce around. Meyer seamlessly balances all 10 of them in a manner that would make GRRM proud. Let me just wrap this section up for you by saying: All of the characters you loved in the earlier books you will love even more in Winter. And your hatred for Levana will go through. the. roof.
Since I’ve never written a Lunar Chronicles review, I want to point out here that I greatly appreciate that Meyer acknowledged the entire world. We get to see glimpses of all of the earthen leaders and travel to different parts of the world, which is one thing that is often neglected in YA dystopian-ish novels set on earth. But I digress. In Winter, we travel to Luna! If you’ve read Fairest, you’re already somewhat familiar with Luna, but now we travel much deeper into the infrastructure and how it lends to Levana’s total control. This also allows us to witness the suffering of the outer sectors and how completely delusional Levana is for thinking her people love her even a teeny tiny bit. Ironic because Winter is supposed to be the delusional one, eh?
My biggest issue and the reason I can’t give this book a very high rating was Meyer’s “happily ever after”. I am aware that these are fairy tale re-tellings, and fairy tales have happy endings. But seriously, after everything that happens, everyone survives and gets to walk into the sunset with the perfect significant other? COME ON. I know this is slightly terrible of me because it’s not like I WANT any of the characters to be killed off. But the fact that none of them were feels like a cop-out to me. I think this is the literary critic in me speaking more than the reader. But I can’t shake the belief that an author can’t be afraid to sacrifice their characters to create a more powerful book, and Meyer failed me in that. But the ending was sweet and satisfying and I have no complaints about the explanations or any notion of plot-holes, I’m just being picky.
I’ll write again soon! Until then, keep reading!