The Iron Fey: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

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The Iron Fey: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

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Category: Teens
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Loralei Haylock
Reviewed by Loralei Haylock
Summary: Slow to start, but soon catapults you into a brilliantly imagined world, populated by frightening faeries of every variety. A really enjoyable read.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 384 Date: February 2011
Publisher: Mira
ISBN: 978-0778304340

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Meghan Chase has always found her life slightly odd. She's never fitted in at school, where bullies relentlessly target her, nor at home, where her family always seem slightly surprised to find her there – except her little brother, Ethan, they barely remember her as soon as she leaves the room. Her only friend in the world is Robbie, her happy-go-lucky next door neighbour, who can always make her laugh. Meghan thinks turning sixteen will signal a change in their fortunes – she'll be able to drive, get them out of hickville once in a while.

But then mysterious things, part of Meghan's life since her father literally disappeared when she was six, start happening more frequently, and Meghan starts seeing things that aren't there. When Ethan is taken and replaced by a cruel impersonation, a changeling child, Meghan has to open her eyes to a world she never even knew existed – the faery world. But, once you start seeing the true nature of the world, you will always see it. Sometimes, ignorance is bliss…

It took me a while to get into this one. Frankly, Meghan's human life and teenage trials I found completely banal. I was practically screaming at her in my head to grow a backbone and stand up to the bullies. So they photoshopped your head onto someone else's naked body. So what? It didn't really inspire any great empathy from me.

But, grow a backbone is exactly what Meghan did when she entered the faery world, and suddenly she became a much more likeable character. And wow, the faery world was amazing. Kagawa clearly knows her stuff when it comes to the various different species of the Fey, and they were colourful and terrifying and leapt out at you from the words on the page. Every time I sat down to snatch a few moments to read, it was like being transported into the colourful halls of the Summer King's Court.

And it only got better throughout. At first Meghan relies a little too much on her two bickering guardians, her best friend and the gorgeous, but cold Winter Prince, Ash. But as her help starts to dwindle for various reasons, and Meghan has to start finding her own way, leading to a suitably climactic battle, and an end that at once is satisfying enough to not drive you mad, but equally open enough to leave you hankering for the next instalment. Really excellent stuff.

My thanks to the publisher for sending a copy.

If you like faeries check out Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely series, and for those interested in the legends behind some of the creatures in the story, Carol and Dinah Mack's Field Guide to Demons, Fairies, Fallen Angels and other Subversive Spirits is an enjoyable read.

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Buy The Iron Fey: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Iron Fey: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa at


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