“Even in the future the story begins with Once Upon a Time…”
It had been my greatest book-related wish to reread this series ever since I first read it in December 2015.
I was devastated when I read it and it’s one of my absolute favorite series of all time. It’s number 4 on the list actually, after Harry Potter, Hunger Games and Percy Jackson. Just like I judge every Dystopian Fantasy by comparing it to the Hunger Games, I judge every YA Fairytale Retelling by comparing it to the Lunar Chronicles. The tragedy is, I’ve been disappointed on both accounts, but more so with the fairytale retellings.
None of the retellings I’ve read have ever come close to the ingenuity of this series. They are all either really weird or really disappointing, especially if they are short. Marissa Meyer herself had trouble repeating the goodness of these books. I’ve read her other books, Heartless and Renegades and I was supremely underwhelmed.
These books set the bar high.
Coming back to what I said before, I had wanted to reread this series for about two and a half years and yet couldn’t bring myself to. As I recently discovered what miraculous things audiobooks are, I decided to reread the Lunar Chronicles. Through the audiobooks. It took me two months to listen to all five books.
IT. WAS. DIVINE.
The narrator’s voice captured me from the very beginning and I can’t even begin to describe how much fun it was, listening to her do all of these different accents and characters. She did an incredible job! Rebecca Soler, consider me a fan.<3<3<3
Here’s how long each of the books took:
- Cinder: 10 July – 18 July (8 days)
- Scarlet: 19 July – 26 July (8 days)
- Cress: 27 July – 10 August (15 days)
- Fairest: 10 August – 15 August (5 days)
- Winter: 16 August – 7 September (22 days)
I think my average was 1 hour mostly. Some days I managed to listen for hours and some barely a couple of minutes. It was one of the best experiences ever and I had a fantastic time revisiting these books I loved so much.
They all had their own opening theme music and the best ones were Cinder and Fairest. Fairest’s theme gave me chills, much like the book did the first time I read it.
It was bittersweet and amazing how the narration took me back to places that I had imagined the first time, but more powerfully. I was surprised to realize how well I remembered everything.
My least favorite book in the series is Scarlet and Scarlet and Wolf the least favorite couple. Take note, I said least ‘favorite’. That means I love them all but some more than others. I also realize now that Cinder is probably my most favorite book just because it started it all while Cress and Winter almost tie. Then there’s Fairest. GOSH. Okay, here’s how it is:
- Cinder and Cress tie on the first place
- Winter and Fairest tie on the second
- Scarlet on the third place
Moreover, I LOVE these fan art posters of the characters. SO ACCURATE!
As a couple, Winter and Jacin always give me the most feels. The princess and guard dynamic is too delicious. Cress and Thorne are adorable and I love Cress on a spiritual level because #shortgirls. Cinder and Kai are leaders and so admirable. Wolf and Scarlet happened too quickly and I haven’t fully been okay with that, especially after the reread. They’re cute and all but like I said, least favorite.
Marissa Meyer is clever and you can clearly tell this from how stupendously everything comes together and how the pieces all fit. I was struck dumb the first time and I was struck dumb again this time too. Things like Cinder’s metal foot, all the characters and their names but the name ‘Cinder’ most of all (because it has a clear history behind it unlike most of the names which fit the fairytale narrative and the original stories but don’t have a history to them), all three couples plus Jacin being Winter’s seven companions or dwarves and a million other things like that.
I haven’t come across anything this good ever since, though I’ve been reading retellings constantly in the hopes that I would.