Cress is the third book in Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles series. This is an imaginative, clever series that uses fairytale motifs in a futuristic setting. The first book, Cinder, was about a cyborg with a big secret. The second book, Scarlet, was about a girl with a red hoodie who also has a secret, and who falls in with a street fighter named Wolf. This book, Cress, deals with the stories of Cinder and Scarlet as well as a computer genius named Cress, who is imprisoned in a satellite orbiting earth. Together, they attempt to stop the evil Lunar Queen from marrying Prince Kai and taking over the Earth. Somehow, when I type this, it sounds silly – but it isn’t.
I was a big fan of the first two books. You can find my review of them at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. Cress is no different from the other books in terms of tone and quality. All three books have strong romantic elements, dynamic female heroines, and imaginative world-building. The books also excel at seamlessly incorporating the fairy tale stories into the slightly steampunk futuristic setting.
The problem I had with Cress was that at the end of the second book, the main characters of Cinder and Scarlet finally join forces. I was looking forward to them working together in Cress, but almost immediately the team is split up again. By the time I settled into one groups’ story, the viewpoint shifted to another group. The pacing was frustrating and distracting.
By far the best part of the book was the romance between Cress and Captain Thorne. Cress has a crush on Captain Thorne that she developed by reading about his exploits. When she meets him, he turns out to be different from what she thought, but as the two get to know each other better the romance is touching and sweet and satisfying.
If you have an interest in this series, you will definitely want to start with Cinder. This isn’t a series to jump into. In fact, it’s been long enough since I read Scarlet that I had forgotten some crucial stuff and I wanted a “Previously On..” section. I do love this series and although Cress had it’s flaws, I can’t wait to read the last book, Winter, which takes on Snow White. Cinderella, Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, and Snow White kicking ass together? Sign me up!