Cress: A Thorn on the Crescent Moon

Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3), by Marissa Meyer • Feiwel & Friends • ★★★★ • Goodreads • SPOILER ALERT!
I liked this book, but I’m a little disappointed because I wanted to love it. I hope I’ll love Winter, because from what little of the princess that I read here, I already enjoy her presence. Despite the clear references to Snow White, my first impression was actually that of a slightly demented Alice (the Wonderland Alice) and I already adore her for that.

The biggest enjoyment I got out of this book was getting to know Thorne through Cress and how Thorne reacted to Cress’s encounters when they only had each other. I think a close contender to that level of enjoyment was seeing the fall of Sybil Mira. DAT BIATCH.

Obviously, the biggest revelation I love was the one between Doctor Erland and Cress because it’s no secret that bitter twists and plots are some of my favourite bookish things. It’s not that I’m heartless, but I kind of enjoy how imaginary tales and fictional relationships can cause such a psychological tremor. Ice cold brilliance - my cup of tea.

Cinder and Kai in this book sort of bore me to tears, but I suppose this is Cress after all. Iko remains chipper and lovable, even with wires and electronic juices spewing out of her.

The Chinese honorifics (-jie, -mei, -daren) in this series continues to be a fly buzzing around my head. Pretty annoying. It’s not that they are spelt wrong or things, but it's just... they do not fit the status or ranks when used. I reckon only Bristol-daren is used the most accurately, from what I remember. It’s usually the -jie and -mei that bothers me. If one goes according to how Wikipedia describes Chinese honorifics, maaaaybe it will pass (but have we not learnt in school that Wikipedia is not a legit source). But for a person of even the slightest Chinese knowledge or descent, it’s very awkward, such as…

  • For Cinder (as a disguised official) to address Adri as -jie is bizarre. I would opt for Linh-furen, which works as it’s quite literally Mrs. Linh. (Using Linh-dajie could work if that official was being "overly" friendly.)
  • For Konn Torin to address Cinder as -mei is also awkward. They aren’t close enough for that. I would opt for Linh-guniang, which is also Ms. Linh. (Since using Linh-xiaojie will be overly ambiguous.)
There are a few posts addressing this if you just Google. Personally, I feel that there is not much research done into this portion of the series because let’s face it, there’s not a lot of instances in which these honorifics appear. I had wanted to give this problem a miss because I felt like I was nitpicking in a fictional world -- BUT the capital is New Beijing, it doesn’t get any clearer than that. (Let’s not go into how the Commonwealth’s rulers are named Rikan and Kaito, neither of which sounds Chinese at all. BUT I also understand the counter-argument that this is not the Beijing as we know it...) Also, I really love my Chinese history and also tales retold from historical events so I think I’m a little far from being biased. :p

THAT ASIDE, as long as I pretend not to see those honorifics, the story still stands strong on its own. I am looking forward to reading Winter, where hopefully there will be shit going down or shit hitting the fan. Either way, fun times await!


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