My rating: 5 of 5 stars
As I mentioned in the past review as this is not the first book in the series there will be major spoilers, even though I’m not spoiling anything from this book.
Whether I agree or not, many people find that Scarlet is their least favorite book in the series. As a result, I worry that they may not continue with the series at that point which would be a major mistake. Cress is an absolutely fantastic book and will hit you in the feels more times than I can count.
While they may not be my OTP, Cresswell is probably in my top five or 10 favorite ships. I’ve never really sat down and tried to figure it out. It’s like trying to figure out which puppies in an entire room full of puppies are the cutest. Impossible. As much as I love Wolflet and Kaider, there is just that extra something that Cress and Thorne have.
For those familiar with the Disney movie, Tangled, their relationship is very similar (in my opinion). I absolutely adore the two of them together. While Thorne is a bit of a player, confident, a wanted criminal… he goes on this major character arc over the course of the series. Cress has this romanticized, hero view of him and he realizes that he wants to live up to that image.
I laughed so hard when Thorne barreled into the hallway yelling Cress and then ran right past the room. It both tugged at my heartstrings so much and made me roll my eyes. One of my favourite lines was “You came for me” because it just shows the new, unsure feelings between them while simultaneously showing that they’re much deeper than either truly realizes yet. My heart melted.
It is fantastic to see how the characters grow and evolve over the course of the series. Kai starts out as a prince and completely unprepared for his responsibilities. He is thrust into his role much sooner than anticipated and he has to grow up really quickly. He has the weight of an entire people on his shoulders.
All Cinder ever wanted was to be a normal person and she finds out that her life is even more abnormal than she realized. Not only is she a cyborg, but she’s Lunar. Not only is she a Lunar, but she’s royalty. She has just as much if not more on her shoulders than Kai does. She is the one that people have been putting all of their hopes and dreams on for over a decade.
Cress has been stuck in a satellite by herself with no human interaction for a large portion of her life. Her whole life she had to escape into fictional stories in her own head because of her real life. She never learned to stand up for herself and she’s not used to the real world. It was nice to see little elements of her bravery throughout the story despite the fact that that is not her nature.
Sadly, we don’t really get to see any development from Scarlet or Wolf. Their stories in Cress are relatively non-existent. Despite the fact that they were the focus of the second book, I do think that it was a negative for me that one of the main pairs was essentially completely overlooked in this book. At the same time, I also have that feeling for Winter and Jacin in regards to the first two books and most of the third. We get little glimpses of them and spend a small amount of time with Jacin, but overall I don’t feel like I know their characters whatsoever.
The author does continue the world building but the writing is predominantly focused on the characters and the plot. There are some really nice glimpses into small villages or communities in other places than we’re used to. I think it is a nice blend between story and world so that these books are very accessible. It’s not heavy world building that might make readers hesitant to dive into such rich, dense worlds (like high fantasy might be).
Overall, I think this is a fabulous novel and I would highly recommend the entire series to people even if science-fiction is not normally what you gravitate towards.