If you haven’t started on this series, you’ve been missing out. I listened to all of The Lunar Chronicles on audiobook this year. This YA series takes old fairy tales, and gives them a modern, futuristic twist that brings them all together.
Cinder is a cyborg, having been in a tragic accident when she was little. She works in the market as a mechanic, and one fateful day, Prince Kaito comes to her stall to get his android fixed. This sparks a friendship (and perhaps a romance?) between a regular citizen and the soon-to-be Emperor of the Eastern Commonwealth. Earth is under attack from “The Plague” — a disease that kills a person within weeks of contracting it. No one knows where it comes from or how to cure it. When Cinder’s evil stepmother gives her up for the cyborg draft for medical testing, Cinder finds out some very shocking news about herself. This starts an epic journey and Cinder gains many friends — and enemies — throughout the process.
Scarlet is a young farmer whose grandmother disappears one day. She’s determined to find her, and on the way, she meets a genetically modified man named Wolf. He’s mysterious and Scarlet isn’t sure she should trust him. Cress is a spin on the old Rapunzel story, locked up in a satellite to do evil Queen Levana’s bidding with her impressive hacking skills. Queen Levana rules Luna (the Moon), and she is well-known as a cruel leader who killed her own niece, Celene, the rightful Queen of Luna. Princess Winter is her step-daughter, cursed with Lunar Madness and never to be Queen due to her lack of royal blood. Over time, all of these characters, and many more, meet up with Cinder and choose either to follow and help her, or work against her for their own benefit.
The story is very fast-paced and easy to read, but has the same feel-good plot points like the fairy tales. It has it all: action, romance, humor, politics, and fantasy. The last book in the series, Winter, just came out this November, so now you can read through all 5 books without torturous waiting, like the rest of us did. Lucky you!