Review Detail

4.0 1
Young Adult Fiction 5170
Cress My Heart and Hope to Die, This Book Is the Best
Overall rating
 
4.7
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Coming to nearly 600 pages, Cress is a much more ambitious novel than either of its predecessors. The book’s length is the most obvious change, but that length is required to encompass the ever-swelling scope and intensity of the Lunar Chronicles. Meyer’s series has been one of my favorites from the beginning, but it’s just been getting better as it goes along. Meyer has planned everything out from the beginning, and it shows in the strength and consistency of the plot.

What I Loved:
With Cress, the cast adds another new main character, Crescent Moon, or Cress for short. She’s my least favorite of the three heroines thus far, and probably destined to be my least favorite overall. Still, her character is marvelously done and the retelling of Rapunzel creatively-crafted. For readers frustrated by the increase in the cast for Scarlet and wished for just a couple of viewpoints, Cress will be even more frustrating. Personally, I think this roving third person point of view is pretty much the only way that Meyer could effectively have told this tale.

Though the leads in the Lunar Chronicles are not the best-developed characters, they are, to a one, memorable and easy to relate to. They’ve all got their flaws and their charming qualities. Even more importantly, the six lead characters all have very distinct personalities from one another. Cinder is not Scarlet is not Cress; the same goes for Wolf, Thorne and Kai. Putting together such a large, diverse cast and so much plot and world building is tricky. The way that Meyer builds on more with each book, adding characters slowly, is inspired, and saves the reader from the infodumping that would have been necessary had the series opened with such a large cast.

One of my criticisms in Scarlet was the instalove between Wolf and Scarlet, and, if that worried you, fear not. There’s not too much about their romance here, because Scarlet’s a reasonable girl and doesn’t want to rush into something that quickly. I love Meyer so much for that. The rest of the romances are delightful as well, largely because they’re kept to the back burner where they burn slowly. There’s a bit of sappiness from Cress, but give the girl a break, because she’s spent all of her post-pubescent years alone in space; she has an excuse for being hormonal and wanting a fairy tale romance. Can you imagine if all you knew about love was from television programs? Except for the fact that I’m not entirely sold on one of the ships, I approve of everything she does here.

The reason that I think Cress continues to improve upon an already exceptional series is the upping in the plot. Both Cinder and Scarlet, though set in a unique landscape, are fairly straightforward from a plot perspective. They don’t have much in the way of surprises. They’re pretty predictable, as fairy tales tend to be. With Cress, the larger plot arc really begins to kick into high gear, and, in this volume, Meyer actually managed to surprise me several times. Everything’s really coming together, and Winter will blow my mind wide open, I have no doubt.

What Left Me Wanting More:
I just don't ship Cress' ship. I don't. I wish I could but I can't. Everyone else loves it though. *sighs*

The Final Verdict:
Basically, I need Winter right now, and I sort of hate myself for reading this so early, because it makes the wait that much longer. I trust Meyer to end the series on a strong note, because everything has been so well thought out and the series has been on a steady incline in quality.
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