Welcome back! We are on the last (insert sob here) installment of The Lunar Chronicles, Winter.
Having all been united (except for Scarlet- shes still imprisoned on Luna), the team has successful derailed the marriage between Emperor Kai and queen Levena by kidnapping Kai and escaping off in the Rampion to plot their next moves; head to Luna, rescue Scarlet, and overthrow Levena while instating the true Lunar Queen in her place, none other than our beloved Cinder (or Princess Selene as is her true birth name). Jacin has betrayed them, selling them out to Sybil and almost foiling their whole plan. He returns to Luna where he is reunited with his Princess Winter.
Meanwhile, Scarlet is imprisoned on Luna, the plaything of the mentally fragile Princess of Luna, Winter. Scarlet feels defeated, having been tortured by the Lunar Court, she now only has Winter for company. Caged and alone she fears she may never see her friends again. Winter is the step daughter of Levena, kept alive and (mostly unharmed) by Levena due to a dying wish from her late husband, Winters father. Winter despises the royal court, their cruelty and disdain for shells and humans, the cruel ways they use their Lunar gift to manipulate others. She saves Scarlet by asking to keep her as a pet in her menagerie of animals. Winter is psychologically fragile, damaged even. She refuses to use her lunar gift, hates to see how easy it is to manipulate others free will, and staunchly refuses to manipulate anyone which results in her, ahem, insanity. It is a clearly documented side affect of not using the Lunar gift, that it eventually drives the person mad. She is thrilled with the return of her best friend Jacin after the kidnapping of the Queens betrothed and through him eventually learns of the plan by the others to overthrow Levena and instate Cinder (Selene) as Queen.
Having always been jealous of her beauty and the way in which the people of Luna love her, Levena (becoming more and more unhinged as the book wears on) orders the assassination of Winter, by none other than Jacin (she is so twisted that Levena). Jacin, unable to follow through on orders (hello, its SO obvious they love each other- just say it already!), arranges for Winter and Scarlet's escape into the outer sectors of Luna.
Cinder and her gang eventually put into motion their plan which involves returning Kai to resume his marriage to Levena, arriving (semi)undetected to Luna, rescuing Scarlet. staging a coup, assuming control of the throne, and gaining access to the cure for the plague. Of course, nothing goes quite to plan (when does it ever?!).
Overall, I was very satisfied with how this series turned out. Watching the evolution of all the characters, who all not only were involved in the journey of establishing interplanetary peace, but also individual journeys of identity was very gratifying. There were enough twists and turns to keep the story line interesting and fresh. I have to say, my most favorite story line to follow was the evolution of the relationship between Cress and Thorne ( I know, I know, I've said it like a million times, but I seriously LOVE these two together, the way they bring to the surface parts of themselves not shown to anyone).
Do yourselves a favor and pick up this series (if you haven't already) and give it a read, If you have been reading along with me, what did you guys think? Love it? Hate it? Tell me your thoughts in the comments and we can totally fan-girl!
Come back next week for the prequel to this series, Fairest.