Winter by Marissa Meyer


Princess Winter is beloved and despite her scars her beauty is arguably greater than the queen’s. While the princess seems to be meek and tame, she fights back against Queen Levana’s reign of terror in her own quiet way. Winter doesn’t use her powers and it is driving her mad.

Cinder and her compatriots have finally arrived on Luna and are attempting to take down Levana’s empire from within. But in order to do so they need to enlist the Lunar people. This is where Winter comes to their aid as does her loyal guard Jacin.

In this final installment of the Lunar Chronicles we enter the last fairytale, Snow White. Here we learn more about Luna’s dark history, the powers that each Lunar has, and the limits of Cinder’s fury driven momentum.

While I think we have too many characters, I appreciate Meyer’s ability to balance them. Each character receives just enough pages for the reader to understand their motivations, backgrounds and role in the larger picture. Many of these characters could have been left behind and there would have been ways to still reach the finale, but Meyer at least tries to make each individual indispensable to the cause even if that requires some extra suspension of disbelief.

I enjoyed reading this book. I enjoyed the twist on the fairytale and Winter quickly became my favorite character.

“She was prettier than a bouquet of roses and crazier than a headless chicken. Fitting in was not an option.”

I love her fight, her agony, her passion and that she is trying to change the game from within, an attitude that I personally respect. However, I must echo a thought from reading Cress, I dislike that every character is paired up.

“And they all lived happily to the end of their days.”

A classic element of YA books is the love story. It is hard to sell a good YA book without them. It’s like having a romance novel without the sex, it doesn’t make sense. That being said FOUR love stories is excessive at best and makes the reader feel like happiness is only possible when you’ve got a man.

That being said,  while I dislike that the pairing off occurred, I respect how it was done. This is in fact, a retelling of fairytales which each have their own romantic happy ending. And so, to leave out any one love story may have been a difficult choice. Additionally, I admire that each relationship is very different. Because of the staggered introduction of characters we get to see each of these relationships at a different stage. Each partnership has had a different amount of time to mature, and each partnership shows a different aspect of a good real-world relationship. Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter each have found their opposite half. Each man balances out each woman in a different way by having them have opposing life histories, character traits, and viewpoints.

For example, the Cress and Captain relationship is probably my least favorite from an emotional point of view. As a reader I don’t really love these two characters and feel like they were disposable. However, as a deep thinker I appreciate their balance the most. I love that Captain is not a good man. He really is a pirate, but even he recognizes that Cress brings out the best in him. He chooses to be a hero for her something that could not have occurred without the relationship. There is true beauty and inspiration in that moment of character development.

Really that is the essence of what is done well in these books: balance. Balance of characters, balance of time, balance of abilities, and balance between the fairytale and the retelling. It’s a balance I respect even if it left me wanting a bit more.

Overall, I give it a 4/5.

Plotline: 4/5
Main Characters: 4/5
Side Characters: 4/5 (For each one I love there is one that is just okay)
Pacing: 3/5
World Development: 5/5
Writing 4/5

Procrastination and Giggles,
The Red Queen

P.S. This is still all about Iko, that sexy, robotic, hilarious, minx.