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The Iron King
by Julie Kagawa
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 becmes strangely protective of her, Meghan seses 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. -(summary from book cover)
My Thoughts: Poor Meghan has the worst 16th birthday ever. Her little brother Ethan is kidnapped and a changeling is left in his place. Her pal Robbie is not who she has always said he was – he is actually Puck, her guardian. Puck leads Meghan into the faery world to find Ethan. Once there, Meghan finds out she is actually a faery princess. She falls in love with Ash, the dark and mysterious Winter Prince. Along with Puck, Ash, and a cait sith named Grimalkin, Meghan sets off on a journey to find Ethan and bring him home. What she discovers is a world that is both beautiful and deadly…and dangerously close to falling at hands that are more powerful than any in all of the fey world.
This book is like a shiny, sparkly jewel up on my shelf. Or like a beautiful rainbow. It is such a classic way to build a story…a girl with no friends ends up becoming a fairy princess. But it works so well, yet again.
Meghan Chase is very likeable as a character. She is very brave and adjusts well to the news that she is a princess. Still, she is a teenager, and teenagers fall in love. She falls hard for Ash, and I can’t say I blame her. After all, he is a dark and mysterious prince that rides a beautiful horse! Their romance seems doomed in the beginning, as their two respective kingdoms do not seem to get along very well. But despite this, they cannot seem to keep from falling in love, and I absolutely loved it.
Of course, there’s always a Puck-like character, isn’t there? The best friend, the one who is always there, the one that doesn’t get the girl…poor guy!! He risks everything over and over and over for Meghan, and by the end of the book, she is head-over-heels in love with Ash. I have no idea where this series is going to take this triangle, but for now, I am loving it.
I love the Nevernever…how it is so beautiful and so deadly at the same time. That is what I love about faery books. Not the Tinkerbell stuff, but the ‘real’ faery stuff…the ones who are manipulative and cunning and evil and stunningly beautiful. There are several times where Meghan finds herself in some beautiful place only to nearly get killed or eaten or bitten. The characters are awesome. The main characters are so rich and complex, yet real…and the secondary characters are such fun, whether it is what they are made of or what kind of creature they are. I think it must be so cool to have an imagination so vivid and wild, like the author’s, and it makes the story so entertaining for us as readers. (Grimalkin reminded me a bit of the Cheshire Cat from Alice In Wonderland. Anybody else?)
Ms. Kagawa did such an excellent job of making this book thrilling and engaging from the absolute start to the very last word. I love the way the end had some resolution, but also left wide open spaces for the next books in the series. There were no cliffhangers, which was wonderful for me. I do not like cliffhangers, but I loved the end of this book.
This book is wonderfully appropriate for the YA audience and also brilliantly entertaining for the older audience that enjoys YA books. When I finished it (in just a few hours), I was very sad that I didn’t have The Iron Daughter ready to start right away. I recommend this book to everybody everywhere and you should read it immediately. And then let me know how much you loved it! Cause you will.