Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa


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.

Bravo to Harlequin Teen for publishing this surprising book. Bravo to them again on the beautiful cover - can you believe how gorgeous this book's cover is? I bought this book back in February when I went to B&N to get the new Deanna Raybourn just because I loved the cover so much. I finally got around to reading it the other day and noticed that it seems as if everyone is also reading (and reviewing) this book lately. 

I recently saw a review for it on Writings Of A Wicked Book Addict (obviously a kindred spirit - click HERE to read her review) and would like to reiterate one of her points: this book would be a wonderful companion for students to read along with Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. Really, teachers should add it to their booklists as it compliments Dream with a contemporary YA vibe that would appeal to teenagers. I'm certainly no teenager, thank God, and even though Shakespeare makes me cross-eyed I certainly enjoyed The Iron King. It's a modern fairy tale, less urban than Holly Black's fab Faerie trilogy and a little more wholesome but no less compelling. I would like to note that as a fan of Rob Thurman's Cal Leandros series, I was delighted to see a less adult version of Robin Goodfellow in this book. Puck goes from being a pervy used car salesman in Nightlife to a smitten high school student/royal bodyguard in The Iron King while not losing the best parts of his personality. Awesome.

It was pretty obvious yet sneaky the way Julie Kagawa manages to fit in a cautionary tale about technology and where it's going in both our world and in Faerie. In the Iron King's lands, acid rain actually will burn holes in you and rats become your best buds. Tech becomes something like what you'd see in The Terminator or The Matrix or (God help me) in Transformers, where ordinary conveniences have been turned into an absolute nightmare. Halting the progress of the Iron King's damage to Faerie has become priority number one to Meghan Chase and her friends and which I assume will continue in The Iron Daughter, Kagawa's second book, out on August 1st.

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