Winter by Marissa Meyer
(The Lunar Chronicles #4)
i read the first 3 books in this series Cinder, Scarlet and Cress in early 2014 so i have been waiting a long time for this finale! Initial thoughts were holy shit 824 pages, what a beast. About half way through i was glad that it was so long as i was not ready to be done with it.
This story follows Princess Winter who is our villain Queen Levana's step daughter. Winter is a young girl (age not disclosed) id guess around 16 or 17. When her father died Levana swears to him that she will look after and protect Winter. As Winter becomes a young woman Levana feels threatened by her beauty, so much so that she glamours her into cutting her own face. Winter refuses to use her Lunar gift of manipulating people and she doesnt use her glamour to hide her scars as a direct result of this she has lunar sickness which causes hallucinations and general madness.
In this final installment the gang (Cinder, Kai, Iko, Scarlet, Wolf, Cress and Thorne) decide to fight back and dethrone Levana to ensure Selene (Cinder) gains her rightful throne. As Kai is set to marry Levana in order to sign a peace treaty between Earth and Luna and secure the antidote to cure Letumosis, an earthen disease created by Levana. Cinder forms a plan to rage a war from the outer sectors of Luna and to ultimately overthrow Levana.
After reading Fairest, a novella that details why Levana turned into the evil dictator we know and love, i couldnt help but feel sorry for her. All she ever wanted was to be regarded as beautiful and to be queen. Her older sister Channery (Cinders mum) manipulates Levana into putting her hand in the fire resulting in her having quite severe burns in which she uses her glamour to constantly hide. Levana becomes bitter and sets out to become queen no matter what, when she kills Selene in order to eliminate a heir to the throne she becomes queen by default. Chaos and rebellion ensues.
I am very fond of the friendships and romantic relationships between each of the characters, particularly Cress and Carswell Thorne which i have enjoyed from the previous book. The introduction of Winter was masterfully crafted and her romantic interest Jacin was perfect, i loved the dynamic between them. I usually detest books with too much romance but these books are so subtle with it, its really well done.
The ending felt a little rushed and i was left with a gaping hole in my heart knowing that this was the final book and id never know what became of the characters or the relationship between Earth and Luna!
I gave this book 4 stars based on the abrupt ending but ultimately it was rather faultless!