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Review: Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Cover of Fairest by Marissa Meyer
3.5 Stars

In a prequel to Cinder, Marissa Meyer explores the life of the Lunar queen everyone loves to hate. Levana. Why does she act the way she does? Why is she such a raging bitch? Fairest gives some insight into those questions.

I'm finding this hard to rate. On the one hand, it is well-written and exciting and everything that I expect from this series. On the other hand, it's Levana. Oh my gosh! I despise this character!

I tried hard to find something to like and to see her as more of a victim than a victimizer and that worked for maybe the first part. Then she started being herself and I could not stand her!

The whole family is twisted and insane. Maybe that goes hand-in-hand with their Lunar "Gift." Levana actually looks pretty good compared to her parents and even her older sister Channery. But whether they've inevitably twisted her or whether it's a matter of genetics, she slowly starts manipulating everyone around her to get what she wants.

From the story of how she won her first husband to the story of how she became Queen rather than Queen-Regent, I just got more and more agitated as I listened. Even when people are trying to explain to her why she can't just order them to love her, she just doesn't get it. In fact, she's usually not listening but instead trying to figure out a new way to manipulate them.

A terrible incident from her childhood is alluded to throughout the whole novella. It's pretty obvious what happened from pretty early on. The details are chilling when they're finally revealed. Unfortunately, it wasn't enough for me to cut her any slack. I still can't stand her.

So this long rant about my dislike of a fictional character should actually say something about the quality of the writing. I'm obviously drawn right into Marissa Meyer's world. Narrator Rebecca Soler did an excellent job, as always. I got chills every time I heard her say, "Come here, baby sister." *shiver*

This really isn't the place to start with this series, despite the fact that it probably is the the first in the story timeline. If you've enjoyed the other books in the series, go ahead and pick it up. It is worth it to know more of Levana's back story. It feels like a good lead-up to Winter, the next book in the series, as well.

Read or listen to an excerpt.

My review of Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress.

Find author Marissa Meyer on her website, her blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

Buy Fairest at

I have an affiliate relationship with Malaprop's, my local independent bookstore located in beautiful downtown Asheville, NC; and Better World Books. I will receive a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase books through links on my site. My opinions are completely my own.


  1. I agree that Levana is not a sympathetic heroine. I learned a lot from reading this though. I didn't realize Channery was evil too till I read Fairest. I don't remember any kind of negative allusion to her in Cinder or the other books. Also I thought it was good to learn more about Winter before the final book. One question this book left me with--how is Cinder going to be able to rule these people? Luna seems like such a messed up place!

  2. Ok I'm glad I read your review. I already thought she Levana was a loathesome character with no redeeming qualities so it will be 'interesting' to learn about the rest of her family lol. And I'll get my butt into gear and read Cress, so I'm ready for Winter!


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