Cinder

by

Marissa Meyer

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A cyborg is a human being who also has mechanical or robotic body parts. Cinder is a cyborg who has a prosthetic hand, a prosthetic foot, and a mechanical brain interface that allows her to control these parts of her body. Many Earthens (citizens of Earth) view cyborgs as inferior to humans or more expendable; for example, Cinder’s stepmother Adri doesn’t believe that Cinder can feel love. The government also drafts cyborgs as forced scientific research subjects, choosing random cyborgs for letumosis research on the principle that cyborgs owe their lives to scientists and should be willing to sacrifice themselves to help society as a whole.

Cyborg Quotes in Cinder

The Cinder quotes below are all either spoken by Cyborg or refer to Cyborg. For each quote, you can also see the other terms and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Bravery and Sacrifice Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Feiwel and Friends edition of Cinder published in 2012.
Chapter 1 Quotes

“They say you’re the best mechanic in New Beijing. I was expecting an old man.”

“Do they?” she murmured.

He wasn’t the first to voice surprise. Most of her customers couldn’t fathom how a teenage girl could be the best mechanic in the city, and she never broadcast the reason for her talent. The fewer people who knew she was cyborg, the better. She was sure she’d go mad if all the market shopkeepers looked at her with the same disdain as Chang Sacha did.

Related Characters: Prince Kai (speaker), Cinder/Princess Selene (speaker), Chang Sacha, Sunto
Related Symbols: Cinder’s Mechanical Foot
Page Number: 10
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 2 Quotes

Irritation hardened in Cinder’s gut. She might have pointed out that Pearl and Peony could have been given ready-made rather than custom dresses in order to budget for Cinder’s as well. She might have pointed out that they would only wear their dresses one time too. She might have pointed out that, as she was the one doing the work, the money should have been hers to spend as she saw fit. But all arguments would come to nothing. Legally, Cinder belonged to Adri as much as the household android and so too did her money, her few possessions, even the new foot she’d just attached. Adri loved to remind her of that.

Related Characters: Cinder/Princess Selene, Adri, Pearl, Peony, Iko
Related Symbols: Cinder’s Mechanical Foot
Page Number: 24
Explanation and Analysis:

The cyborg draft had been started by some royal research team a year ago. Every morning, a new ID number was drawn from the pool of so many thousand cyborgs who resided in the Eastern Commonwealth. Subjects had been carted in from provinces as far-reaching as Mumbai and Singapore to act as guinea pigs for the antidote testing. It was made out to be some sort of honor, giving your life for the good of humanity, but it was really just a reminder that cyborgs were not like everyone else. Many of them had been given a second chance at life by the generous hand of scientists and therefore owed their very existence to those who had created them. They were lucky to have lived this long, many thought. It’s only right that they should be the first to give up their lives in search for the cure.

Page Number: 28
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 4 Quotes

Lunars were a society that had evolved from an Earthen moon colony centuries ago, but they weren’t human anymore. People said Lunars could alter a person’s brain—make you see things you shouldn’t see, feel things you shouldn’t feel, do things you didn’t want to do. Their unnatural power had made them a greedy and violent race, and Queen Levana was the worst of all of them.

Page Number: 43
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 15 Quotes

And maybe she’d been right to do it. Maybe it was Cinder’s duty as a cyborg to sacrifice herself so all the normal humans could be cured. Maybe it did make sense to use the ones who had already been tampered with. But Cinder knew she would never forgive Adri for it. The woman was supposed to be the one to protect her, to help her. If Adri and Pearl were her only family left, she would be better off alone.

Related Characters: Cinder/Princess Selene (speaker), Adri, Peony
Page Number: 131
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 20 Quotes

She was indeed beautiful, as if someone had taken the scientific measurements of perfection and used them to mold a single ideal specimen. Her face was slightly heart-shaped, with high cheekbones barely flushed. Auburn hair fell in silken ringlets to her waist and her unblemished ivory skin shimmered like mother-of-pearl in the sunshine. Her lips were red red red, looking like she’d just drunk a pint of blood.

A chill shook Kai from the inside out. She was unnatural.

Page Number: 183
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 25 Quotes

“Because she was a shell.” He picked his hat off the desk and analyzed it while he spoke, his fingers tracing the herringbone pattern. “I’d agreed with the laws in the past, thought the shells were dangerous. That our society would fall apart if they were allowed to live. But not my little girl.” An ironic smile twisted up his lips. “After she was born, I wanted to run away, to bring her to Earth, but my wife was even more devoted to Her Majesty than I had been. She wanted nothing to do with the child. And so my little Crescent Moon was taken away, like all the others. He stuffed the hat back onto his head and squinted up at Cinder. “She would be about your age now.”

Related Characters: Dr. Erland (speaker), Cinder/Princess Selene, Queen Levana
Page Number: 245
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 36 Quotes

On the fifth step, she heard the bolts snap. The wires tore loose, like tendons stretched to the max. She felt the loss of power at the base of her calf, sending a blinding warning signal up to her brain.

She fell, screaming, and tried to block her fall with her left hand. A shock of pain jolted up her shoulder and into her spine. Metal clattered against stone as she crashed down to the gravel pathway. […]

His eyes drunk her in—a gleam of metal fingers, the wires sparking at the end of her battered metal leg. His jaw fell, and he looked momentarily as if he might be sick.

Related Symbols: Cinder’s Mechanical Foot
Page Number: 365-366
Explanation and Analysis:

“Was it all an illusion?” he asked.

Pain lanced through her chest, squeezing the air out of her. “Kai?”

“Was it all in my head? A Lunar trick?”

Her stomach twisted. “No.” She shook her head, fervently. How to explain that she hadn’t had the gift before? That she couldn’t have used it against him? “I would never lie—”

The words faded. She had lied. Everything he knew about her had been a lie.

Related Characters: Prince Kai (speaker), Cinder/Princess Selene (speaker)
Related Symbols: Cinder’s Mechanical Foot
Page Number: 367
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 38 Quotes

Releasing the new prosthesis, Cinder covered her ears and buried her face against her knee. The draft. All those cyborgs. So many people convinced that it was the right thing. That it was better them than humans. Once a science project, always a science project.

And he’d only wanted to find her.

Page Number: 382
Explanation and Analysis:

If she didn’t try to stop Levana, what would happen to Kai? Though she tried to block out the question, it continued to plague her, echoing in her thoughts.
Maybe Dr. Erland was right. Maybe she had to run. Maybe she had to try.

She felt for the prosthetic limbs in her lap and wrapped her hands around them. Lifting her head, she looked up at the grate in the prison door. The guard had never closed it.

A tingle passed down her spine. A strange new electricity was thrumming beneath her skin, telling her she wasn’t just a cyborg anymore. She was Lunar now. She could make people see things that weren’t there. Feel things they shouldn’t feel. Do things they didn’t mean to do.

Page Number: 386
Explanation and Analysis:

As her hands stopped shaking, she slid the stiletto knife out from the new titanium-plated finger and maneuvered the blade against her wrist. The cut was still fresh where she’d started to remove her ID chip before, so they would not be able to track her. This time, there was no hesitation.

Soon, the whole world would be searching for her—Linh Cinder.

A deformed cyborg with a missing foot.

A Lunar with a stolen identity.

A mechanic with no one to run to, nowhere to go. But they would be looking for a ghost.

Related Symbols: Cinder’s Mechanical Foot
Page Number: 387
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Cinder LitChart as a printable PDF.
Cinder PDF

Cyborg Term Timeline in Cinder

The timeline below shows where the term Cyborg appears in Cinder. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Resourcefulness, Kindness, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...her son Sunto not to play so close to Cinder’s booth because Cinder is a cyborg. Cinder continues to disconnect the wires between her mechanical foot and ankle, before cleaning her... (full context)
Chapter 2
Power, Greed, and Evil Theme Icon
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
When the press conference ends, Pearl suggests that Cinder volunteer for cyborg plague testing. A year earlier, the cyborg draft was created: the government draws a cyborg’s... (full context)
Chapter 3
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Resourcefulness, Kindness, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...go. Plus, even if she went, no one would dance with her since she’s a cyborg. (full context)
Chapter 13
Bravery and Sacrifice Theme Icon
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...Cinder that she’s got some of the most complex technology he’s ever seen in a cyborg. She asks if that has anything to do with her immunity, and Dr. Erland says... (full context)
Chapter 14
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...simply adjusting her spine. Cinder waits for him to tell Kai that she is a cyborg, but he doesn’t. (full context)
Chapter 19
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...not want to be one of them. Plus, to be Lunar in addition to being cyborg makes her a complete outcast. Dr. Erland tells Cinder that she can’t let Queen Levana... (full context)
Chapter 21
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Resourcefulness, Kindness, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...regret saying no to Kai’s invitation, knowing that she would likely reveal herself as a cyborg and embarrass herself and the prince at the ball. Cinder also doesn’t want anyone to... (full context)
Chapter 24
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...single girls in the city, but Kai asks why not her. She thinks because she’s cyborg, Lunar, and a mechanic, but she simply says that he doesn’t want her. He tells... (full context)
Chapter 25
Bravery and Sacrifice Theme Icon
Power, Greed, and Evil Theme Icon
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
...Dr. Erland then says that Cinder’s gift is starting to return to her, overwhelming her cyborg system, which is why she’s been experiencing pain. Eventually, it won’t cause this reaction, and... (full context)
Chapter 27
Bravery and Sacrifice Theme Icon
Resourcefulness, Kindness, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...a voice comes over the speaker, informing Cinder that Adri has labeled her a runaway cyborg—their orders are to apprehend her by force and return her to Adri. (full context)
Chapter 29
Power, Greed, and Evil Theme Icon
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
...is dead. Cinder says it’s not her fault that Peony died, or that she’s a cyborg, or that she’s a part of the family. Cinder says that she can earn the... (full context)
Chapter 30
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...her even though she’s just a poor mechanic—but she knows that telling him that she’s cyborg and Lunar would be too much. She fidgets with her gloves but decides against taking... (full context)
Power, Greed, and Evil Theme Icon
Stereotypes and Discrimination Theme Icon
Resourcefulness, Kindness, and Perseverance Theme Icon
...princess. Pearl starts to laugh, realizing that Kai must not know that Cinder is a cyborg. Pearl says that if he knew the truth, he would never have given Cinder a... (full context)
Chapter 31
Power, Greed, and Evil Theme Icon
...sarcastic jabs until Pearl says that she’s going to tell Kai that Cinder is a cyborg. Cinder bristles and says she could have asked Kai to dance with Pearl—he agreed to... (full context)
Chapter 34
Bravery and Sacrifice Theme Icon
...she can and approaches Kai, wondering if Pearl has already told him that she’s a cyborg. (full context)
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...why she didn’t tell him. For a moment, Cinder thinks that he knows she’s a cyborg—and that he’s dancing with her anyway, that he might still like her. But soon, Cinder... (full context)
Chapter 36
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...down the stairs, a look of disgust on his face. He picks up the rusted cyborg foot and asks Cinder if everything was in his head. Cinder assures him that she... (full context)
Chapter 38
Secrecy and Manipulation Theme Icon
...Queen Levana. He’s been searching for her for many years, knowing that she was a cyborg teenager because her body was badly damaged in the fire that Levana set. Cinder suddenly... (full context)