Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
Scarlet is the companion novel/sequel to Cinder. It follows up on some loose ends from the previous book, but it mostly focuses on a new protagonist, who is aptly named Scarlet.
Red Riding Hood mythology: Scarlet is a twisted version of Red Riding Hood, and oh, those twists are heavenly. Marissa Meyer does just as good of a job with Scarlet as she did with Cinder.
The pacing: Scarlet’s story is frequently interrupted with snippets of Cinder’s, and somehow, it works. The story still chugs along at a reasonably fast pace, despite the alternating chapters taking place in two different countries.
Scarlet as a character: Scarlet is so different from Cinder, which will be great when they come together in book three. Scarlet is kind of quiet, but she holds a fierce loyalty to the ones she loves—specifically, her grandmother. She’s selfless and has a big heart. I enjoyed having
Thorne: Arguably the best new character in the series, Thorne accidentally ends up accompanying Cinder on a whirlwind escape from prison. This guy is totally unpredictable, and more than a little strange, which makes him a fascinating person to read about.
What Didn’t Work:
The romance: A little over halfway through the book, a sort-of romance develops between Scarlet and another character. The romance seems to come out of nowhere, and feels more toxic than swoony. I know many people disagree with me on this, but I just couldn’t stand the love interest. I’m not into characters that are tortured souls and nothing else.
Scarlet is a solid addition to the Lunar Chronicles series. It’s just as suspenseful and exciting as Cinder. Plus, there are even more Creepy Moon People! If you’ve read Cinder, you absolutely must pick up a copy of Scarlet. You won’t regret it.