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Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

The Iron King (Iron Fey, Book 1)
Author: Julie Kagawa (Website)
Release Date: 2/1/10
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Age Group: Young Adult (14+)
Source: Borrowed (Public Library)
Overall Feelings: Awesome! Awesome! Awesome!

"Meghan Chase has a secret destiny—one she could never have imagined…
 Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan's life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school…or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she's known is about to change.

But she could never have guessed the truth—that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she'll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face…and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart."

Plot & Ending: I have to wonder, are there Angels on my side or somethin'? Because I've majorly scored in the book acquiring department. Come on, three five smiley reads in one week?! It's just too good to be true...

The Iron King really surprised me, in a good way though. I picked this up at the library out of sheer curiosity. I was wondering what the hell all the buzz was about. I admit, I was a little skeptical. But, as my mom always says, never judge a book by it's cover. And boy was she right!

Iron King incorporates some of my favorite elements of an urban fantasy/paranormal romance read. It has a massive problem, like one that cannot be ignored for any reason. There's forbidden love. An amazing heroine. A deep, dark prince as the heroine's love interest. Doesn't that sound awesome already?

Nevernever is where this story takes place. An enchanting, hidden faeryland filled with cunning and dangerous fey. There's the Seelie and Unseelie courts. Outraged, ruthless queens. A gorgeous king. A drop-dead beautiful prince, one of many. A half-human, half-fey princess, one that everyone wants to use or kill. And an evil force out to slaughter them all. Talk about a fascinating read, right?

I just have to write about this...Queen Mab's entrance...the temperature drops, she walks in, cold and composed, her dark, ink black hair flowing to her waist, her entourage entering after her, icy, ethereal princes walk in as well...Oh, my! Wonderful!

I started reading this book a few hours ago and did not put it down until I finished the very last page. That's about three or four hours of intense, concentrated reading. But, it was absolutely worth it. To check the reality, I haven't read any fae/fairy/fey novels since Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely (which, I haven't gotten around to the fourth installment just yet; I can't afford a copy right now) and Cyn Balog's Fairy Tale.

This one really knocked my socks off. Why? Because it swept me away from the moment I turned page one. It is that good. The mystery behind Meghan's father's kidnapping did me in and once I got started I couldn't manage the simple task of putting it down.

As for the ending...I'm outraged at Ash being so calm, so seemingly uncaring of Meghan's current predicament.

*this may be a little bit spoilery, so you may not want to read this next part*

I mean, her becoming a prisoner of the Unseelie Court Queen, Queen Mab, should worry him or upset him, right? Yet, I know that his actions and emotions are all part of it...all lead up to something. I'm also curious about the state of the Iron fey, how they're faring after...well, after. Sorry, don't want to say too much.

All in all, this was a delicious read. I cannot wait to read The Iron Daughter (though, sadly, I'm having some trouble obtaining the sequel *sighs*)!

Characters: Another biggie that won me over about this book is the characters. Ash, oh, Ash, how I adore you! Once Ash came into the picture, my reading pace picked up speed at a remarkable rate. I appreciated the fact that he didn't fall all over Meghan in the beginning, who is another fascinating character, that it took some time before I got to see some embracing, some development in their romance. It just added to the...appeal of their relationship. As I said, Meghan fascinated me. I felt like I could walk a mile in her shoes any day. There's always a point, as a teenager, where you feel like you're ignored and unloved, even if it isn't necessarily true. So, to me, her character is ultra relatable. Puck, Meghan's best friend, managed to annoy me and crack me up all at once, but I guess that just adds to his charm. Next to Ash and Meghan, Grimalkin has to be my favorite of the lot. His sarcasm just lightened the mood for me, like whatever the characters were dealing with at the moment didn't seem so grim or so serious. I laughed a lot because of him.

I'm really attached to the characters, but I don't know what sort of label I can give them. Maybe that's the point...they don't fit into a slot or a label. (:

"Oh, we're playing nice now? Shall we have tea first? Brew up a nice pot of kiss-my-ass?" --Puck (227)

"'Bravo,' said Grimalkin, peering down from Cold Tom's chest. 'The Winter prince and Oberon's jester agreeing on something. The world must be ending.'" --Grimalkin (253)

"I dropped the bag with a shudder. 'Is that why Mab wants me?' I asked Ash, who still stood a few feet away. 'As a weapon?

'Ridiculous, isn't it?' Grimalkin purred. 'She cannot even use glamour. She would be a horrible assassin." --Meghan and Grimalkin (253)

"'No one touches her,' Ash said, his voice coated with frost. 'Touch her, and I'll freeze your testicles off and put them in a jar. Understand?" --Ash (274)

Cover:  I like it alot! It's like this big, intricate, tangled mass of marvelousness (don't know if that's a real word)! The vines and thorns are cool. I love the font, how it looks like a thorny plant. I think the model resembles Meghan pretty strongly, which I don't find too often in books. Plus, she's pretty too.

I'm actually very sad that I don't have this one yet. Hmmm...maybe I can get my mom to cough up some money or order it for me...ANYWAY, don't miss out on the Iron Fey series; it's very much worth your time! Trust me.


Ελλάδα said...

I really enjoyed getting inside Ash's head, and it made me fall more not less like I was a little afraid of.
The banter between Ash and Puck is amazing and keeps this moving when it could be a bit slow. Add Grimalkin to the mix, and you get a book that I couldn't put down.