Monday, 19 March 2012

Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

The Iron King (The Iron Fey #1) by Julie Kagawa
Released: 1st February 2011
Publisher: MIRA Books
Rating: 4/5

Goodreads description:

Meghan Chase has never fit in at her small-town high school, and now, on the eve of her 16th birthday, she discovers why. When her half brother is kidnapped, Meghan is drawn into a fantastical world she never imagined--the world of Faery, where anything you see may try to eat you, and Meghan is the daughter of the summer faery king. Now she will journey into the depths of Faery to face an unknown enemy . . . and beg the help of a winter prince who might as soon kill her as let her touch his icy heart. The Iron King is the first book in the Iron Fey series.

My thoughts:

I didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I did, but I loved it! I LOVED the sort of adventure/quest aspect of it, it reminded me of Eragon or Percy Jackson in that way: action-packed and full of problems to solve and obstacles to overcome. I've not read a good fantasy book for a while so I really appreciated that element.

I loved how Julie Kagawa stuck to traditional fey lore with the Unseelie and Seelie courts and yet adapted it with the including the Nevernever and other such things. I loved the sort of moral to the story with the iron fey being because humans have become so technically minded and not all imaginative and fantastical any more, that was really clever. I loved how closely the fey world is tied to the human world and yet how derisive the fey are towards humanity. 

Character wise I really liked Puck and Grim. What IS it about sarcastic cat characters that is SO appealing? I love Mogget in Sabriel and what's-his-name in the Inheritance series (It's been a while since I read it) so Grim was an excellent character. I love how you never know what his motivations are, or what he's upto or anything. I loved how Puck was the  same Puck from Midsummer Night's Dream, he really is a total trickster but h could be serious when needed. He provided some much needed light relief in the book.  I liked Ash too, of course, as a love interest and a character. He's definitely the sort of love interest that appeals to me, but I wish he'd stayed all frosty for a bit longer. He thawed a bit too quickly for my liking, and the romance between him and Meghan was again a bit too quick. I like long, dragged out affairs. Meghan...we had a bit of a love/hate relationship. She was SO stupid sometimes and so frigging reckless. She knows she's going into Faerie and that it's dangerous so she packs one change of clothes and a can of coke...what the hell??? Where's your sleeping bag girl! Your survival kit! Trail mix! WHAT ARE YOU PLAYING AT? I also hated the way she kept rashly making deals with various fey, offering them 'whatever they wanted' and saying that she'd 'do anything' and THANKING them despite being repeatedly told TO NOT DO ANY OF THAT. I wish she'd been a bit more level-headed. 

So overall, I loved the plot, I loved the world-building, I loved most of the characters but I wish the romance had panned out a bit differently (personal preference) and I wish I'd liked Meghan more. I am totally addicted to this series now though, at the time of writing this  I've just finished The Iron Queen (OMG the *end*) and have the Iron Knight ready to go on my Kindle. You really get sucked into the plot and I desperately want to know what happens, and this is a great achievement for the author.


  1. Love this series! Every time I read a review on any of the books from this series, I want to go back and reread them all.

    The second book was my least favorite, but it picks up like crazy with the 3rd and 4th! Can't wait to see what you think about the rest of them :)

  2. LOL, Grim is by far the most FANTASTICAL character in this book! I agree about Meghan, but she does grow in the next books, which I was glad about. :) And oh, boy, do I love me some Ash! *goes off to daydream about him*

    Great review, Cait! :D

  3. Hahaha "what IS it about sarcastic cat characters that is SO appealing?" I have no idea, but I KNOW WHAT YOU MEAN. I'm not even a cat person, there's smething about them that kinda freaks me out. But Grim? I LOVE HIM. And oh geez. Puck. There is never enough of that mischievous fey <3

    I wasn't a huge Team Ash girl in The Iron King and it took me FOREVER (like, a year or more) to finally continue the rest of the series, but from the get go with Iron Daughter, I was shipping the Meghan/Ash love <3

    I am SO eager for your Iron Queen review!! *sobs* I am so glad you've become hooked on this series, Cait! Excited for The Immortal Rules aswell? *giddy* *wants it now now now*

    Brilliant review!!

  4. I loved this whole series!

  5. I still haven't started this series because I don't want to hate it and be ridiculed. I think Meghan is going to irritate the hell out of me! One of these days I'm going to pick it up. The fact that you liked it gives me hope.

    1. OMG Jenny, if ANYONE ridicules you for not liking it, we will SLAP THEM. hard. Seriously though, give it a try. I think you might have the same issues with Meghan that I did-but you should definitely try it =]

  6. Grim was definitely one of my favourite characters in this book, and I get what you mean with Meghan, I did want to bash her over the head a couple of times when I read The Iron King. Great review! :)

    1. I definitely wanted to bash her multiple times!!


    I love this series! :) Seriously, it only gets better from this point! I understand what you're saying about Meghan because that girl is DAFT sometimes but she does grow a ton. In TIQ, she's actually pretty awesome. Warning though, you are going to want to hurl heavy objects (like a car) at her in the beginning of the next book. UGHHHHHHHH. It gets better though LOL.

    And Ash! Puck! GRIM! They all completely won me over and the whole adventure feel of the series is awesome and a welcome change. I'm so glad you liked this one! :)


  8. Reading your review, I wonder if I'll feel the same way. Megan sounds kind of like a Bella Swan character - for every moment you find yourself liking her, she then does something that drives you insane and makes you want to shake her. I'll admit, I'm curious to see whom I fall for - Puck, Ash, or both. I'm really glad you liked this one, Cait! Like I said, it's on my TBR...and now a little higher up thanks to your review.

    Molli | Once Upon a Prologue

  9. I'm so glad to hear that you loved this one! The Iron Fey is one of my absolute favorite series and it just gets better with every novel, in my opinion. Happy reading, Cait! :]

    [And I agree with you, GRIM IS AWESOME.]

  10. I totally loved the Iron Fey series. Grim is so awesome! I love him. Not that the other characters aren't great too, but Grim is so entertaining.

  11. I had the same problems with Meghan in this book. She got better eventually...:P. Loved Grim too! He reminded me of Mogget as well, and I just loved the way he spoke. Great review! :)


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