by R.C. Lewis
published by Hyperion
genre: YA, Fairy-tale retelling, Sci-Fi, Fantasy
**received e-arc from publisher and netGalley
Summary (Goodreads): Princess Snow is missing.
Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back-but that's assuming she wants to return at all.
Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.
When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane's arrival was far from accidental, and she's pulled into the heart of a war she's risked everything to avoid.
In her enthralling debut, R.C. Lewis weaves the tale of a princess on the run from painful secrets . . . and a poisonous queen. With the galaxy's future-and her own-in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival.
My Thoughts: Yes, there are similarities between this and the first Lunar Chronicle books. It's very easy to get past considering they are both re-tellings of another story. Neither is an original. Also, while not graphic in detail this story does deal with some serious topics.
While I thought Essie was a great main character my favorite had to be her seven drones. We get to know two of them better than the rest but they all have unique personalities. It is clear that they mean as much to Essie as she does to them.
Instead of the normal fairy princess, we have Essie who lives on a mining planet and earns her way by cage fighting. She can definitely take care of herself and making sure everyone knows it. I do wish her abilities would have either been more fleshed out or something more stable. Not having any clue but being able to use them perfectly when the need arises didn't work for me.
Then there's Dane. He got better as the story progressed but the romance between him and Essie never really caught for me. I think the author put him in a bad spot from the beginning and it was harder for me to forget what he did to Essie than it was for Essie.
Overall, I enjoyed this story. The author did a good job building up unique planets that make up Essie's world. You get a chance to experience them all and see how different they are. The characters fit into the retelling aspect. The King and Queen fit the evil roles, I just wished we had gotten more time with them to flesh out their characters. Rather than just saying "hey evil" with very little show.
As expected with most fairy-tales there is an HEA for the Essie/Snow and Dane.