Book Review: Fairest by Marissa Meyer (Spoiler-Free)

January 31, 2018

“Maybe she truly was hideous. But so long as she could deceive everyone, what did it matter?” ― Marissa Meyer, Fairest: Levana’s Story

Mirror Mirror On The Wall….

It’s always fun to read about the villains of the story, isn’t it? I really do wish that more authors would publish novella’s based on their villains. I think it makes the character so much more layered when you learn why they do what they do. In this case, Fairest by Marissa Meyer follows the early life of the Lunar Queen, Levana, from The Lunar Chronicles. If you have read the other LC books then you know that she is a cold and heartless woman who I really hope gets what is coming to her in the final book. The synopsis for Fairest is as followed:

FROM GOODREADS: Mirror, mirror on the wall,
Who is the fairest of them all?

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story – a story that has never been told . . . until now. 

Marissa Meyer spins yet another unforgettable tale about love and war, deceit and death. This extraordinary book includes full-color art and an excerpt from Winter, the next book in the Lunar Chronicles series.

When I went into reading this one, I really didn’t know what to expect. Throughout the first three books of The Lunar Chronicles there is a bit of backstory on Levana, but not much. In fact, we really don’t know much about Luna at all, but this novella has a great insight. Not only do we see why Levana is the way she is, but how the Lunar powers work, how their citizens are, and we finally get more of an insight on Queen Channary.

“Maybe she truly was hideous. But so long as she could deceive everyone, what did it matter?” ― Marissa Meyer, Fairest: Levana’s Story

I mean, we all know that Levana is delusional. The first three books clearly demonstrate that. But did you ever wonder why? I mean, the amount of torment that she goes through is enough to drive anyone a bit mad. However, I don’t think her colorful ideas solely came from her traumatic childhood, I think she had always thought herself to be above others and I never thought she or her sister could be defined as stable. I thought Meyer did a fantastic job writing Levana’s voice and making it as twisted it could be.

As for Luna itself, we had seen snippets of it in previous books, but the entirety of the novella is set on the Moon and I am obsessed. Everything about the setting of the novel was fascinating. The blending of science fiction and traditional monarchy was seamless. All of the characters were well thought out and a lot of the questions I had in the first three books were answered as well. I now understand why the citizens all follow Levana now, the fear is very evident especially because of how they perceived her when she was a child. 

Queen Channary was one character that I didn’t see coming. You hear about the late Queen in the previous books, but not a lot of Earthens knew about her so we didn’t know much. And now that I do…yeah I am so glad she is not in the story anymore. I get why Luna has been going down hill for a while now…yikes. 

IMG_20180123_102842_910.jpg

I liked that the novella was fast paced. When books like Fairest which are meant to be “filler books” I don’t like them to drone on and on, but this one was the perfect length. It not only tied up loose ends from the former books, but also added a bit of foreshadow for the final installment. It is important to read this series in order of publication as I have already clued in on things from Fairest as I am reading Winter. 

This novella definitely does not portray Levana in a better light, but it makes you understand just how dangerous she is. It has also made me even more excited for the rest of the series. Overall I give this book 4 stars. Wasn’t my favourite of the series, but it was a nice little break from lengthy novels that make up The Lunar Chronicles. 

Have you read Fairest? Let me know what you thought!

Happy Reading!

– Haley

 

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