It is nice to see a sci-fi novel aimed at girls. Fantasy and sci-fi tend to be male-dominated fields, but "Cinder" tries to bridge the gap between girl fic and science fic.The Good:I really like how Meyer set the story in an Asia country. Current fiction tends to be British or American. This was a very pleasant twist. Prince Kai was not just "the boy" He possessed his own story, attitude, feelings, and character. So many books just have the stand-in hottie, and he does very little outside of filling the role. But Meyer avoided that pitfall and brought Kai to life.Themes: Not only was the Cinderella-theme used in a wonderful, "based-on" approach, but the themes of disease, war and oppression make a wonderful addition to the book.The Meh:I never really understood Cinder. I felt that she was the weakest character in the book. Some of the ballroom scenes were just really awkward as well, and I felt that her attitude was a huge turn-off. Kai was really jilted by her. And I understand that she felt very unloved, and might see intimacy as an issue, but her character was so uninspiring and flat that I just couldn't drum up the sympathy for the character.In fact, I disliked the entire last 15% of the book. It built up, played out well, then just crashed under the author cramming in the last bits and pieces, making the ending dense and overall killing the natural flow of the book.The BIG TWIST. Yeah, not a big surprise. I am very interested in the next installations. This wasn't a terrible book, but I was expecting a bit more from this one.