About the Book

Title: Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3)
Published: 2014
Series: The Lunar Chronicles
Swoonworthy Scale: 6

Cover Story: Rapunzel, Rapunzel
BFF Charm: Heck Yes
Talky Talk: Three’s Not a Crowd
Bonus Factors: (More) Fairy Tale Fusion, Superpowers
Relationship Status: Already Dreading the End

Spoiler Alert: This is for the third book in a series; if you want to check out Megan’s review of the first book—Cinder—you can do so here. And if you want to check out my review of the second—Scarlet—you can do that here.

Cover Story: Rapunzel, Rapunzel

Out of all three of the books in the Lunar Chronicles, this is one most obviously inspired by a fairy tale. The long blonde braid practically screams, “Let down your hair!”

(Disclaimer: My book actually has this cover, which would have been WAY less interesting to do a Cover Story blurb on.)

The Deal:

The ragtag team made up of Cinder, Scarlet, Wolf, Captain Carswell Thorne and Iko (in the form of a spaceship) have escaped to orbit around Earth and are spending their time training and plotting. They’ve come up with a flimsy plan to overthrow Queen Levana, which involves crashing her wedding to Emperor Kai. And because they need all the help they can get, Cinder attempts to contact the young, blonde Lunar technician who helped her in the past. Little do they know that the technician is much closer than they think.

Cress has been imprisoned in a satellite orbiting Earth for seven years. Her main job is to keep the hundreds of Lunar ships hovering above the planet a secret, but she also does various other tasks as assigned, many of them involving hacking and watching news feeds for information on Cinder and her crew. What her superiors don’t realize, however, is that she’s long been working against the Lunar monarchy and is actually protecting the Rampion from being seen by both Lunar and Earthen prying eyes.

When an attempted rescue of Cress goes terribly wrong, the group is split up. In order to carry out their plan, and with the date of the wedding looming, they are forced to find their way back together, regardless of the odds or the obstacles in their path.

BFF Charm: Heck Yes

BFF Charm Heck Yes - sparklier and shinier than the original BFF Charm

Cress is yet another fantastic addition to a series full of wonderful characters. She’s a little sheltered, a little shy, but she’s never been broken by the reality of her imprisonment or beaten down by her lot in life. In fact, she’s used every bit of what she has in her prison and the resources she was given to turn herself into a vital member of Cinder’s team—long before they ever meet in person.

Swoonworthy Scale: 6

In order to avoid spoilers, I had to average out the swoon in this book. And with three different relationships in various stages of development, the levels of swoon fluctuate throughout Cress. I will say, however, that at least one relationship reaches a level that pleased me to a great extent.

Talky Talk: Three’s Not a Crowd

It would be easy to think that a series that, over the course of three books, introduces three different main characters and a multitude of secondary ones, might become muddled and confusing. This isn’t the case with Marissa Meyers’ Lunar Chronicles. Each book helps to build a world that feels utterly realistic, even with its cyborgs, moon people with mental superpowers and androids who long to be human. And the action never pauses, either. With each consecutive book, I feel myself getting more and more sucked into the story. Meyer’s writing and plot building, although not the most complex, has only gotten better with each story.

Bonus Factor: (More) Fairy Tale Fusion

Artistic drawing of colorful fairy tale characters all piled together

Cress continues the alternative fairy tale character progression begun in Cinder and continued in Scarlet with a new and unique version of Rapunzel. In this case, her tower is a  high-tech satellite in orbit above Earth.

Bonus Factor: Superpowers

Although Cinder starts to use her powers in Scarlet, she’s still only learning all that she’s capable of at the start of Cress. Through training and practice, however, her skills grow, and by the end of the book she’s a force to be reckoned with. I can only imagine what she’ll be able to do in the fourth book (Winter).

Relationship Status: Already Dreading the End

You’re not the end to the series, Book, but you’re close—and I’m already getting choked up by the fact that our time will soon come to an end. The story you and your sisters have spun for me is so entertaining, I’m certain I’ll have withdrawls for months once it’s finally all over.

FTC Full Disclosure: I received a free review copy from Macmillan. I received neither a trip to Luna—which might be a good thing—nor money for this review. Cress will be available Feb. 4.

Mandy (she/her) is a manager at a tech company who lives in Austin, TX, with her husband, son, and dogs. She loves superheroes and pretty much any show or movie with “Star” in the name.