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Short Description for Scarlet Scarlet Benoit and Wolf, a street fighter who may have information about her missing grandmother, join forces with Cinder as they try to stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana in this story inspired by Little Red Riding Hood.
- Published: 05 February 2013
- Format: Hardback 454 pages
- ISBN 13: 9780312642969 ISBN 10: 0312642962
- Sales rank: 13,173
Reviews for Scarlet
Great World-Building Yet Somewhat Disappointing Follow-Up
I, like many other Marissa Meyer fans, have waited longingly for over a year to read Scarlet. I did not even request an ARC of the novel because it came out a day before my birthday, and it made the perfect gift. (There is no denying that the temptation to get my hands on an ARC was strong.) When the book came in the mail, I petted it - LITERALLY petted it! It has ridden in my purse for a week, just so I can snatch moments to devour the pages. It was a whirlwind romance. Sadly though, it did not sweep me off my feet. I'm so sorry, Scarlet - it's not you, it's me.
No, I mean it, it really must be me. Scarlet had all of the fantastic qualities that Cinder had: strong heroine; Iko; fantastic mix of sci-fi and fairy tale (Meyer is beyond genius in her execution of this); Iko; deliciously evil villainess; Iko (you see where I'm going with this). Little Red Riding Hood is even one of my favorite fairy tales! Scarlet and Wolf had all of the makings of interesting literary characters, but I found myself resenting the time given to their story. The banter between Cinder, Captain Thorne, and Iko (and all combinations thereof) was delightful. Maybe it was just me wanting more of Cinder and her story that disrupted my enjoyment of the novel. Scarlet wasn't a bad character - she was just as strong and determined as Cinder. I just had trouble connecting with her after I spent so long waiting to rejoin Cinder on her journey. I can say that Wolf is far too broken of a bad boy for my taste, and maybe it was the mom in me that wanted to smack Scarlet for taking him along.
All griping aside, Meyer's world-weaving is genius. The most fun part of reading Meyer's works are figuring out where her storytelling intersects with the original fairy tales. I started reading the novel asking myself questions like, "Does Wolf want to eat grandmother?" and "Where is the huntsman?" I did not find all of my answers, but I can tell you without giving anything away that Little Red Riding Hood lives on grandmother's farm, and the Big Bad Wolf is a street-fighter with a Big Bad Secret that could potentially affect the entire world. Grandmother is also in possession of some secrets of her own, which wove the story in Scarlet well into The Lunar Chronicles. I loved being introduced to more of this futuristic Earth, and I honestly cannot wait to read Winter, which is supposed to be set on the moon.
The fact that Scarlet did not completely work for me makes me no less a fan of The Lunar Chronicles, and I can still happily say it is the one of the most imaginative series currently being published. I'm dying to give Marissa Meyer another chance to make me swoon with Cress. Scarlet is an important building block for the series as a whole, and I will definitely reread it at a later date to see if my bad-naturedness truly played a part in my feelings about this book. I encourage you to check out these two blogs that gave Scarlet very high ratings: A Reader of Fictions and The Starry-Eyed Review.
3.5 Stars by Kayla Beck
Futuristic Fairy Tale - absolutely captivating!
Scarlet Benoit's grand-mère, Michelle, has been missing for two weeks. The townfolk of Rieux, France, think that Granny Benoit is crazy and not to worry. But to miss her granddaughter's eighteenth birthday? Scarlet knows that something is wrong. To top it off she found Michelle's ID chip - bloody and abandoned. Already suspicious and scared to death that something drastic has happened to her beloved grandmother, there's a stranger in town with a mysterious and dangerous vibe. Scarred and dishevelled, Wolf wants work as a farm hand but Scarlet doesn't trust him - he's never even had a vegetable before! Add in a tattoo, super strength and a career as an unbeatable street fighter, Scarlet fears that he's behind the mysterious disappearance of her grand-mère.
In a simultaneous storyline picking up just moments after Cinder being thrown into prison, the newly found lost Lunar Princess is making a break for it. An unlikely ally comes in the form of a cell mate named Captain Carswell Thorne and together they try to find out the mysterious circumstances around Cinder's life before she was a cyborg mechanic from New Beijing.
Picking up just after Cinder left off, I thought it was fantastic how this story evolved during this novel. It's so easy to forget that Cinder is a sixteen year old girl. She acts with a lot of maturity and a level head - even in the midst of a prison break! I love how her character is growing and I'm excited to see what happens next for her now that she's embracing her Lunar heritage. Her new companion Carswell Thorne (excuse me - that's Captain Carswell Throne) is a laugh. He reminded me a little of my four favourite fictional captains (Brannigan from Futurama, Reynolds from Firefly, Harkness from Torchwood and Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean). I loved his comic relief and the snarky, snarly sarcastic banter exchanged between him and Cinder. The addition of some of my favourite characters from the first book, Iko and Kai, really added to the excitement.
The new story of Scarlet and Wolf was interesting. There's a lot of new drama regarding their relationship and the disappearance of Michelle - who is more than just a granny from a small vegetable growing farm. Everything is ramping up in terms of story - I loved how the seemingly separate lives of Cinder and Scarlet are connected. There's a lot of action and a dash of romance too. I can't wait for the third book to be released. I love Meyer's style and her intelligent, capable heroines. by Kate
I can't really go into everything I loved about Scarlet because it would be as long as the book. Seriously. All the characters, all the POVs, all the anguish and suspense and utter torment are SO worth it. I feel like my heart has been ripped out of my chest, and I'm sure you'll feel the same way as I do. I have no idea how I'm going to function for a year as I wait for Cress. Literally. I'm like, listless. I can't stop thinking about this book. Maybe it was the fact that I read it in half a day, that it was too much all at once? Ya, so don't overdose on this book. Space it out a little, like give it two days.
I'm just going to focus on characters because I don't want to give too much away about the story for those who haven't read the first book.
Cinder: I missed her. I was worried that I wouldn't enjoy this book as much because it wouldn't just be her and Kai's POVs anymore, but don't worry! There's just enough of her in this. I feel like she's got a lot of growth ahead of her as she tries to figure out the ethics of using her gift. What she does in this book will be just the tip of the ice berg. Plus she is so friggin badass. She doesn't take **** from anyone.
Prince Kai: I feel SO bad for him in this book as he struggles with his feelings for Cinder, whether it was all a glamour or if he really likes her. I'm not going to go into any more because he only has a few chapters, the last of which will probably kill you.
Scarlet: Another character who won't take **** from anyone. She's a girl on a mission (to find her grandmother) and she's not going to let anyone stop her. I love her red hoodie, I love her hair, I love her attitude, I love her relationship with Wolf, I just love her. It seems to me like she's got her priorities straight, and she won't let anyone dissuade her when she's got her mind fixed on something.
Captain (Cadet) Carswell Thorne: I'm semi-confused about who he's supposed to be in this fairy-tale adaptation, but he comes across as very Flynn Rider-ish to me, so hopefully I've pegged him right. This guy is hilarious, and his relationships with Cinder (him purposefully bugging her, Cinder making scathing remarks back) is spot on and perfect. It doesn't feel threatening to the feelings that Cinder has for Kai. I'm not sure how that will change in the books ahead.
Wolf: I was so confused with his story line because new things were introduced, and he kept adding more information, and Scarlet found out other things about him, so that when there's this big reveal, it's like BAM! Death. In a good way. He was the source of mystery in this book.
I just want to note that the pacing is very different than Cinder. The first book set everything up: the world, the characters, and the conflict. Scarlet picks it up, has tons of action mixed in with some slower, more reflective moments. It's the perfect balance, and it's the perfect second book. It manages to satisfy some elements from the first book while introducing new conflicts and mysteries for the next books. Cinder was to The Fellowship of the Ring as Scarlet is to The Twin Towers. That's the best analogy I can come up with. The whole time you'll be leaning into the book, waiting for the moment when the two storylines will collide. And they do, so perfectly. I would give this book a 6/5, but that would screw up my rating system. So 5/5 for my favourite series. I can't wait for Cress. by Janita Van Dyk