14 Amazing Books Like the Lunar Chronicles to Read Now!

Cinder and more books like the lunar chronicles

I read The Lunar Chronicles books a few years ago and enjoyed them so much that I read the first three books in the series in less than a week. When I was done, I had a book hangover and quickly started looking for more books like the Lunar Chronicles.  

These books are part fantasy and part sci-fi with strong female characters AND are a fairy-tale retelling as well. This series has it all. If you haven’t read the Lunar Chronicles and you have enjoyed the books below, you can give the Lunar Chronicles a try. 

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**Updated 12/17/2022**

Lunar Chronicles Series in Order // More books in the Lunar Chronicles Series// More Books like the Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer// Fairy Tale Retelling Books Like the Lunar Chronicles // Sci-fi Books Like the Lunar Chronicles //More Books Like the Lunar Chronicles

Lunar Chronicles Series in Order


Cinder by Melissa Meyer

This four-book series is set in the future in a time of disease and war.  This series is part twisted fairy tale, part dystopia, and part sci-fi fantasy.  

Cinderella, Red Riding Hood, and Rapunzel are re-imagined as you have never seen them before. All of them are smart and strong women far from the helpless damsels in distress we know them to be. 

The first in this series of classic book retellings introduces us to Cinder.  She is a cyborg (part human, part machine) who lives with her……..you guessed it….. two step-sisters and stepmother.

Find this book in Books Like Cinder / YA Dystopian Books / YA Romance Fantasy Books / Best Teen Fantasy / Books Like The Selection

Scarlet and more books like the lunar chronicles

Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles #2) by Marissa Meyer

In this second book in the Lunar Chronicles series, we meet Scarlet Benoit whose grandmother has gone missing. She has to trust a street fighter named Wolf, She has to trust him if she wants answers.

And of course, they meet Cinder who has been trying to break out of prison.


Cress (Lunar Chronicles #3) by Marissa Meyer

Cinder is on the run in this third book in the series. Along with Captain Thorne, Scarlet, and Wolf, Cinder is trying to prevent the Queen from invading Earth.

We meet Cress who has been kept alone and is forced to work for the Queen. Fortunately, she has become the best hacker and is able to try and orchestrate her rescue while Cinder is trying to stop the marriage between Queen Levana and Emperor Kai. This book is non-stop action.


Winter (Lunar Chronicles #4) by Marissa Meyer

This is the fourth book in the amazing Lunar Chronicles series. We meet Winter whose stepmother is Queen Levana. Never underestimate the will of a stepdaughter to undermine her evil stepmother. Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter are all looking for their happy endings.

More Books in the Lunar Chronicles Series


Fairest by Marissa Meyer

This book is the story of Queen Levana. We know that she uses glamour to make herself look beautiful and gain power but, this is her story before she met Cinder, Scarlett, and Cress

stars above

Stars Above by Marissa Meyer

This is a prequel to the Lunar Chronicles series with 9 stories that give us more information about our favorite characters from the Lunar Chronicles.

Best Books Like the Lunar Chronicles


Legendborn by Tracy Deonn

Why did I not read this book before now? In a way, I’m glad I just read this because I only have to wait a few more months for the sequel in this young adult fantasy series. If you love YA fantasy books, this King Arthur re-imagining is a must-read.

Bree Matthews’s mother died in a tragic accident and she cannot seem to recover. When she has a chance to attend a special program for bright high school students at UNC-Chapel Hill, she jumps at the chance.

When Bree witnesses a magical attack on her first night there, her world is thrown upside down as she enters the world of the Legendborn. It is a secret society of students with powerful magic who are also descendants of King Arthur! This is one of the best re-tellings I have read.

Find this book in fantasy books for Teens / Books About Secret Societies / Dark Academia

the belles

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

I loved the first book. I finished it and immediately rushed into book 2. The people in the world of Orleans are devoid of natural beauty and need The Belles to use their magical treatments to be beautiful. The most powerful of the Belles is known as the favorite and works for the royal family to set trends and perform beauty treatments.

But what happens when a sick queen and a greedy princess have differing views on ruling the people of Orléans and The Belles of the world? The world-building in this YA Fantasy was wonderful and the descriptions of the elaborate beauty treatments painted a vivid picture. The characters were flawed but wonderfully constructed and the teacup pets were adorable.

Find this book in Books Like the Selection / YA Fantasy

Books like The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer


Gilded by Marissa Meyer

I love Marissa Meyer’s ability to transport us into the world of fairy tales. This haunting Rumpelstiltskin re-telling left me wondering what happens next.

Serilda is very good and telling lies. Her stories make a wonderful pastime for a miller’s daughter even if they do get her into trouble most of the time. When her lies capture the attention of the Erlking, she must accompany him and his undead Hunters back to his home and complete an impossible task. You guess it- she must spin straw into gold.

This story is dark and creepy and also has no clear ending- be forwarded. It is the perfect new story for anyone looking for books like the Lunar Chronicles.


Heartless by Marissa Meyer

Marissa Meyer is the queen of the twisted fairy tale retelling.  This story tells us about the famous queen in Alice’s Wonderland who is always yelling “Off with his head!”. It is original, well thought out, and fun to read.

Like other fairy tale retellings, this is one of the best books like the Lunar Chronicles series.

Fairy-Tale Retelling Books Like the Lunar Chronicles

Spindle splintered

A Spindle Splinter by Alex E. Harrow

This is the story of sleeping beauty like you have never read it before. This is a true twisted fairy tale Zinnia is turning 21 and it is the last birthday that she will have. She has a rare medical condition in which nobody has ever lived past twenty-one. Zinnia has always thought that she is a modern sleeping beauty.

Charm, Zinnia’s best friend, wants to make the last birthday special but, when Zinnia pricks her finger on the spinning wheel, she finds herself in another dimension with another sleeping beauty.

This modern Sleeping Beauty fairy tale retelling gives power back to the women whose lives are stolen. It is a quick read from ya fantasy books that I loved because the women are no longer helpless.


Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Wow!  This book is an epic adult fairy tale.  It is complex and so unlike any traditional American fairy tale retelling.  An enchanted wood, magic, and mythical creatures grab you and pull you in. This is not a typical damsel-in-distress tale so do not let it fool you.

Agnieszka lives next to a wood filled with dark powers. The village depends on the Dragon to protect them from these dark powers. In exchange, one woman from the village must go and serve him every ten years. To everyone’s surprise, he chooses Agnieszka.

I don’t want to say more about this book and ruin its magic. But, if you love fairy tale retellings or are looking for books like ACOTAR, this is a perfect pick.

A Curse so Dark and Lonely

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmererir?source=bk&t=beyondth06 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=ab68078db1465da19076d014e383dea9& cb=1590787287915

This is a fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast and I read it for a buddy read with some bookstagram friends. I love that the modern retelling of some of the classics give more power to the women in the story.  

I enjoyed this first in the series of YA fantasy romance books although it is a lot tamer than the ⁣other books in the series.  It is not a typical Beauty and the Beast retelling because it has more of a  love triangle but, I don’t want to reveal more.⁣ It’s the first in the series about Prince Rhen and his kingdom.

Find this book in Books Like Cinder / Books like A Court of Thorns and Roses,


Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire

Everyone knows the Wicked Witch of the West but not everyone knows how she became that way. She wasn’t always bad. This is the story of a girl who would grow up to become one of the most hated villains in history.

I think of Professor Snape from Harry Potter in the same way. If you love witches and root for the bad guys, this is a book like Harry Potter for you. Like the Broadway play, the movie adaptation of this will be a must-see.

Find this book in Books Like Harry Potter / Books Like Cinder

bear and the nightingale

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine  Arden

This YA fantasy book which is based on Russian folklore was a slow build.  I wasn’t sure about it until about halfway through when I couldn’t put it down.  In fact, I went out to buy the sequel (The Girl in the Tower) immediately because I needed to find out what had happened. 

Vasya lives with her family on the edge of a Russian forest where they hear stories of the Blue-eyed winter demon and honor household spirits. When Vasya’s dad brings home a new stepmother who forbids these practices, misfortunes follow. Vasya now must use the gifts that she has kept hidden all these years.

adult fairytale retellings

24 Captivating Fairy Tale Retellings for Adults & YA

If you love fairy tale retellings and you are looking for more books like Cinder, check this out.

Sci-fi Books Like the Lunar Chronicles


Matched by Ally Condie 

Think of matched as The Giver with a love triangle. In the future, Officials choose who you will marry according to who will be your perfect match.

When Cassia’s match comes in, she sees Ky Markham’s face on the screen before it turns black. She is told it was a glitch and is given another name as the person who is her ideal match.

Cassia slowly starts to doubt everything she has been told about her perfect society and falls in love with Ky. It causes her to reconsider everything she knows about her world and its rules.

Find this book in Young Adult Dystopian Novels / Books Like the Selection / Books Like Cinder

Ready player one

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

In 2045, most people spent their days in the OASIS, a virtual reality world. When the elusive creator of the OASIS dies and leaves clues behind, the first person to solve the riddles will be in control of the entire OASIS and a massive fortune.

When Wade Watts solves the first clue, he might fight for his survival to win along with his group of misfit friends. Love, a fight for survival, and a group of loyal friends all give me Lunar Chronicle vibes.

Find this book in YA Dystopian Books / Best Sci-Fi Books / Books Like the Hunger Games

hunger games

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

This is the first book in the Hunger Games series and it is epic! In the aftermath of what was once North America, there are 12 Districts surrounding the capital.

Each year, each district sends one boy and one girl to fight to the death in a competition called “The Hunger Games”. Katniss Everdeen volunteers as a tribute to save her younger sister, Prim, from certain death in the games where it is kill-or-be-killed.

This sci-fi book has everything but at its heart, it is a book about family, love, and survival. This young adult book has a heart while making you turn the pages!

Find this book in Books Like the Hunger Games / Young Adult Fantasy Series / Books About Sisters / Sci-Fi Books / Books Like Fourth Wing / YA Dystopian Novels

sci fi header

Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time

If you love the Lunar Chronicles and are looking for more books like Cinder, check out this list.

More Books Like the Lunar Chronicles

The Uglies

The Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Tally is about to turn 16, the time when every teen will undergo radical and high-tech surgery to make them unnaturally beautiful. Before the surgery, teens are sequestered because of how ugly they are to look at.

When Tally’s best friend runs away to live with a group of people who have rejected the surgery, her life takes a spin. She must choose to track down her friend and betray her or live as “an ugly” for the rest of her life.

It took me a while to wrap my head around just how messed up this society is but I couldn’t stop turning the pages.

Find this book in Young Adult Dystopian Novels / Books Like The Hunger Games

Red Queen

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

I have been on some weird dystopian kick recently – which is funny because I had to be forced to read the Hunger Games. Now I can’t seem to stop! I’m sure I’ll switch gears this summer, but I love this young adult fantasy novel.

In this world, those with red blood are common and those with silver blood are elite with superhuman abilities. In the war against Silvers and Reds, Mare Barrow is special and so is this book. The ending was a total shock! I couldn’t put it down.

Find this book in Books like The Hunger Games / Young Adult Romance fantasy books / Books like ACOTAR / YA Dystopian Novels / Books Like The Selection

Lunar Chronicles Merch

What books like The Lunar Chronicles are we missing?

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