book review: fairest + stars above by marissa meyer

hi! I’ve decided to put the two novellas in The Lunar Chronicles together. I read the series according to the date of release. So I read it in the order of Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, Fairest, Winter and lastly, Stars Above. If you are interested in the book reviews of the rest of the books in the series, you can click on the respective titles.


fairest_cover-jpegFairest by Marissa Meyer
Series: Lunar Chronicles
Published January 27th 2015 by Feiwel & Friends
Genre: young adult, fantasy, science fiction, romance

links: Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

Overall Rating: 4/5★

Goodreads summary:

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.

Fairest is the story of Queen Levana, the evil ruler who hides herself behind a veil whenever she’s in front of reflective surfaces and large crowds. The reason and events that led to her being such a manipulative and cunning queen is a heartbreaking one yet it doesn’t get rid of all her wrongdoings.

My strongest two emotions while reading Queen Levana’s story is pity and frustration. I was genuinely upset and felt injustice for her. She was so easily overlooked and overshadowed by her beautiful sister that nobody bothers to see who she really is. The tragedy that caused her invisibility was truly upsetting and in some way or another, I find myself understanding her. It musn’t been easy for her, and it’s no surprise that she became a malicious ruler.

In this incredibly short novella, the amount of times I want to just violently shake Levana to her senses is countless. I don’t think I’ve read another character who is this frustrating and delusional. The frustration kicks in once she starts making use of her manipulative powers.

Like every villain, Levana has her own back story. Though I felt sorry and am able to understand her feelings, ultimately, her reign over Lunar remains and she has no turning back (for me, at least) while she’s plotting the demise of the Earthens.

I would recommend reading Fairest after Cress because if you read it any earlier, it would diminish the excitement and surprises that is offered in Cinder, Scarlet and Cress. Your feelings towards Levana might also be different as well. Personally, if I read Fairest before any of the three books, I wouldn’t feel as great for Levana as I do now.

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Stars Above by Marissa Meyer
Series: The Lunar Chronicles
Published February 2nd 2016 by Feiwel & Friends
Genre: young adult, fantasy, science fiction, romance

links: Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

Overall rating: 4/5★

Goodreads summary:

The enchantment continues….

The universe of the Lunar Chronicles holds stories—and secrets—that are wondrous, vicious, and romantic. How did Cinder first arrive in New Beijing? How did the brooding soldier Wolf transform from young man to killer? When did Princess Winter and the palace guard Jacin realize their destinies?

With nine stories—five of which have never before been published—and an exclusive never-before-seen excerpt from Marissa Meyer’s upcoming novel, Heartless, about the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland, Stars Above is essential for fans of the bestselling and beloved Lunar Chronicles.


The Little Android: A retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid,” set in the world of The Lunar Chronicles.
Glitches: In this prequel to Cinder, we see the results of the plague play out, and the emotional toll it takes on Cinder. Something that may, or may not, be a glitch….
The Queen’s Army: In this prequel to Scarlet, we’re introduced to the army Queen Levana is building, and one soldier in particular who will do anything to keep from becoming the monster they want him to be.
Carswell’s Guide to Being Lucky: Thirteen-year-old Carswell Thorne has big plans involving a Rampion spaceship and a no-return trip out of Los Angeles.
The Keeper: A prequel to the Lunar Chronicles, showing a young Scarlet and how Princess Selene came into the care of Michelle Benoit.
After Sunshine Passes By: In this prequel to Cress, we see how a nine-year-old Cress ended up alone on a satellite, spying on Earth for Luna.
The Princess and the Guard: In this prequel to Winter, we see a game called The Princess
The Mechanic: In this prequel to Cinder, we see Kai and Cinder’s first meeting from Kai’s perspective.
Something Old, Something New: In this epilogue to Winter, friends gather for the wedding of the century…

This is me coming to you 10 minutes after I’ve finished reading Stars Above and me feeling all the emotions and with adrenaline coursing through my veins.

Other than the wedding chapter, The Little Android and The Mechanic, every other short stories are about the different characters. The backgrounds of Scarlet, Wolf, Cress, Thorne, Winter and Jacin were so different, yet because of the same person or cause, they are all integrated together. I enjoyed reading them but I didn’t particularly love them. Except for the wedding chapter, that was glorious. I want more weddings now actually, three more, that’s all I’m asking.

Also, after reading their individual stories, I felt more hatred for Levana. She was incorrigible and so power-hungry and jealous that she uses such horrible ways to get what she wants.

 Without spoiling you on The Little Android, I only can say it didn’t go down the way I expected it to which I’m having mixed feelings about. It’s definitely a change – good or bad, it’s up to you.

Did you correctly predict the couple who were going to get married? I did but, I was hoping it was another pair. But oh wells, it made me love that couple more cause the groom was incredibly sweet to the bride. Made me fangirl so hard.

On a side note: I had such a difficult time turning the pages of Stars Above especially after reading Winter because Winter has such thin papers. It was so distracting.


I would love to know your thoughts on Fairest and Stars Above!


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(my aesthetic for stars above’s something old, something new)

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2 thoughts on “book review: fairest + stars above by marissa meyer

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