Thursday, October 10, 2013

Audio Book Review: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Title: Scarlet
Author: Marissa Meyer
Publisher: Macmillin Audio
Release Date: February 5th, 2013
Rating: 4/5

Cover Impressions: 
Pretty.  Not quite as interesting as the cover for Cinder, but it fits the theme well and I do love that color red.

The Gist:
While Cinder attempts to escape from prison and her upcoming execution by Queen Lavana, Scarlet Benoit is desperately searching for her missing grandmother. She meets up with Wolf, a street fighter with a mysterious tattoo that may be connected to the disappearance and the two plan to take on an entire gang of mercenaries.  As Scarlet searches for the truth, she uncovers secrets about her grandmother, her family and their mysterious connection to the missing Lunar Princess. 


I listened to both Cinder and Scarlet as an audiobook.  I have to admit, I found the whole Sci-Fi/Fairy Tale Mash Up  little predictable in Cinder.  I felt like Cinder was always two steps behind and I was just waiting for her to catch up.  In Scarlet, however, the plot did not follow the fairy tale quite as closely and I found it to be much more suspenseful.  I had a vague idea that eventually the characters would find one another but I really was in the dark about how the rest of the story would develop and how the grandmother and wolf elements would be incorporated.

The romance develops quickly, but is not instant and, by the end, is very believable and sweet.  I am a big fan of multi-faceted characters and Wolf certainly fits the bill - one never really knows where his loyalties lie. I loved the character of Thorne; thief extraordinaire and lover of all things female, he was an excellent addition to the cast of characters and added some well-needed comic relief.  Scarlet was not my favorite from the very beginning and I found myself anxiously awaiting Cinder's chapters, but she did grow on me.  In fact, when she finally met up with Cinder, I was cheering on her take-no-prisoners attitude and giving her kudos for being the only character to tell Cinder off.
Meyer still doesn't shy away from killing off important characters.  One particular death left me sad and angry in a way that only the best books can.  The manner of deaths vary and are often gruesome.  Scarlet features some very tense scenes involving some truly terrifying characters.  The pacing is well done and I was on the edge of my seat for much of the book.  This novel clearly set up for the third installment in the series but had a strong enough plot to be satisfying all on its own.
Scarlet featured quite a few accents and the narrator of the audiobook did a very good job of the distinguishing the characters without allowing them to overpower the dialogue.  I was very happy to note that there is a marked difference between the voices of Scarlet and Cinder.  

Time to start counting down the days until Cress is released!

Teaching/Parental Notes:

13 and up
Gender: Both
Sex: Kissing
Violence: Gunplay, Knifeplay, Mind Control, Torture, Animalistic Attacks
Inappropriate Language: None
Substance Use/Abuse: None


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