Monday, January 7, 2013

Book Review: The Iron King (Iron Fey Series #1)

The Iron King (The Iron Fey, #1)The Iron King (The Iron Fey #1)
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.

(Photo and Description from Goodreads. Source )
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Published: February 1, 2010


Kat's Review

I've been eyeing this series for a long time now.  Every time I walked into a bookstore the books were staring back at me, urging me to pick them up.  I held off, mainly because I haven't read many faery stories, and didn't know what to expect.  When I finally decided to give the series a chance, I was pleasantly surprised.

This book sets up the characters nicely, right from the start.  Meghan's brother sees monsters in the closet, her best friend appears as though out of nowhere at the most opportune moments, and Meghan is still trying to cope with the mysterious loss of her father, while dealing with being an outsider at school.  When her brother is taken and replaced with a changeling, Meghan ventures into the Nevernever with her best friend and faery, Puck, at her side.  All in the first four chapters!
After learning that she is the daughter of the King of the Seelie, or Summer, court, she participates in a festival called Elysium, where she meets Prince Ash of the Unseelie, or Winter Court.  In true romantic tragedy-style, Meghan falls in love with the enemy.  The novel follows her attempts to find her brother, adjust to her new identity, and begin to sort through her feelings for both the Winter Prince, and her best friend, Puck.  It also introduces the Iron Fey, a new breed of faery who thrive in the realm of iron and technology, and who are deadly to traditional faeries.  Meghan must go looking for the Iron King, Machina, in an attempt to save her brother.
I like that the author lets the reader know that there's something strange going on early in the book; it made me want to know more and kept me turning the pages.  Her characters are pulled straight from myth and legend, but Julie Kagawa manages to modernize them for today's reader, while maintaining their ancient essence.  This is important, because it allowed someone like me, with little familiarity of faery myths, to follow the story without getting lost in the mythology.  Her characters are likeable, and I enjoyed Meghan's stubbornness and tenacity.
What makes this book truly an original is the way Kagawa is able to join reality and fantasy.  In the novel, the Nevernever exists because of human belief in fairy tales, songs and legends.  As science and technology take over, and only that which can be proven holds a place in the hearts and minds of humans, the realm of the Nevernever shrinks and dies away.  This is reminiscent of how the ongoing pace of "progress" and unchecked technological advances are eroding the natural world and creating ecological crises.  I really enjoyed this book, and moved on to the second in the series immediately after putting this one down.


Rating: A Good Read. 

This book is worth putting on your to read list.  I will definitely be reading more from this author. I've already finished two more books in the series, and am halfway through the fourth.

1 comment:

  1. I read this series last winter and just bombed through it. It just got better and better with each book. Check out Kagawa's Immortal Rules next. Totally different but fantastic.


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