Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dystopian
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: January 27th 2015
4 OUT OF 5 STARS
“She cried for the girl who had never belonged. A girl who tried so hard, harder than anyone else, and still never had anything to show for it.”
A prequel to the other stories in The Lunar Chronicles, Fairest dives into the backstory of Lunar Queen Levana. A story of love, war and heartbreak, Queen Levana finally receives the depth that any good villain deserves.
There is a saying in writing that “every villain is the hero of their own story”. Now there is some argument about whether or not this is always true, but it certainly is in the case of Levana. She wants what is best for her country, and is striving for it. She is interested in her country, unlike the rest of her family. She is willing to devote herself to what she believes is the greater good.
This is not to say that Levana is entirely sympathetic. She is, at least to some degree, mad. At first she’s desperate for affection, desperate to feel beautiful, which is something anyone can feel sympathy for. However when she uses her lunar gift to force herself on a man things start to go downhill. She begins the novel a bright young girl, and slowly devolves into a disgusting, self-loathing woman worthy of the contempt readers will feel for her during the rest of the series.
It definitely adds more depth to the series. It lets us get into the villain’s head, understand her, maybe pity her but not love her. It is made very clear that she is wicked (something she even thinks of herself on occasion) even if she was not born that way. The book is brilliant, even without a protagonist the reader wants to support. In fact an absolutely despicable protagonist is what makes this short book so wonderful.
Like all Meyer’s books it’s beautifully written, and worth reading before the final installment.