Sunday, July 3, 2011

Happiness is...a good book. (Summer Reading edition #6.)

My apologies for being a day late.  I figured this weekend would be a little bit of a struggle but I didn't think any issues would come up until Monday.  Oh well!

The Iron Queen
Author: Julie Kagawa
Pages: 358
Age Range: 13+
Published: 2011
Genre: Fantasy
Cover Score: ****
Overall Grade: ****
Rating: PG-13

This is the third installment in the Iron Fey series so while I’ll try not to give away any major spoilers for this book I can’t promise there won’t be spoilers about the previous two. Consider yourselves warned.

Meaghan Chase, half mortal daughter of King Oberon of the Summer Court, and Prince Ash of the Winter Court find themselves exiled from the Nevernever after standing up to their respective parents and declaring their love for each other.  Forced to find refuge they first try the mortal world but realize that neither will be comfortable or truly safe there and instead seek the protection of Leanansidhe, Queen of the Exiles.  But their days of peace are few in number.

The Winter and Summer Courts have formed an uneasy alliance in order to fight the Iron fey who are destroying the entire realm of Faery. Knowing Meaghan has unique powers stemming from her lineage as well as her previous battles with the Iron fey, the Courts offer to remove their earlier exiling in exchange for her help.  But the Iron fey are aware of her powers as well and send offers of their own inviting her to come and rule as Queen.

Meaghan and Ash return to the faery realm and are re-joined by Puck, exile from the Summer Court and Meaghan’s former best friend. Ash and Puck resume their mutual dislike of each other and competition for Meaghan’s affections while the three journey to find the new leader of the Iron fey and their source of power. 

Meaghan is forced to make many difficult decisions and come to terms with her powers and who she is and decide who and which life (her mortal or her fey) is most important.

These are fun fantasy tales full of familiar characters and mythology but with some interestingly modern twists particularly involving the Iron Fey who are influenced by technology rather than dreams and imagination as the old ones are. There are some fascinating (and frightful) creatures, epic battles, humor and romance. I read the first book and enjoyed it enough to pick up the second though it wasn’t one I’d fallen in love with. However my love has grown with each new volume.  It’s still not one I would consider one of my all-time favorites but it is definitely enjoyable and well-written.  Recommended for fans of Twilight and such though of a slightly higher quality than most of its ilk. There was no truly happy ending here but the final page offers the promise of a fourth installment later this year.  Iron Knight, you are now on my TBR pile. Do not disappoint!

Book 1-Iron King
Book 2-Iron Daughter
Book 3-Iron Queen
Book 4-Iron Knight (release date Oct 25, 2011)

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