The Iron King: Julie Kagawa

I have fae/faery phobia.  One of my goals for the year was to get outside my comfort zone, so I decided I was going to read a fae book.  Lots of my friends loved the Iron King by Julie Kagawa so I decided to give it a whirl.  Even though I didn’t really care for that vampire book of hers.

General Summary: So, Meghan’s brother gets replaced by a changeling (I know, like the Angelina Jolie movie) and she ends up going to faerie land and finds out she’s a princess and goes on the adventure of a lifetime.  And did I mention she has an awesome b.f.f. named Puck?


Well, I’m cured.  I actually want to read books about faeries now.

Faeries not so scary anymore.

Heaven forbid.

I actually liked this one quite a bit.  It had a lot going for it.  Great characters, adventure, an interesting plot.  Though it did have some faults.  However, for once, the faults didn’t overshadow the great stuff that this book had to offer.

So why did this book end up shining rather than sucking…well, I have lots of theories about that.  Maybe it’s because both the world and character development (for the most part on that one) were well done.  I’ll talk about the world building later on, but it was how world building should be done.  As for the characters…

I liked Meghan.  She was hardly perfect.  She did have her moments of being a damsel in distress, but she was able to figure things out.  And it wasn’t like she was overly powerful or anything.  For example, at one point in the book she manages to get herself out of a bind not through mystical powers or anything, but through her own wits and that’s always a plus in my book.

And I really liked Puck.  He’s just fantastic.  And maybe it’s the fact that he’s so great that I don’t like Ash.  Ash isn’t as cruddy as some other YA heros, but he is pretty cliche.  And yeah, maybe he is a little bit more physically attractive than Puck, but you know what this book shows you why one shouldn’t be shallow when it comes to book boyfriends.

In addition to the characters, I really liked how fast paced this one was.  Occasionally, I’d get confused and I thought portions of the story suffered because of this.  However, overall the pacing worked.  Save for one sort of critical thing, the climax.  I felt the the development of the villain was very weak.

Best Feature: Holy world building, Batman!  Finally.  Fucking finally.  A book with great world building.  I am a fae novice.  Okay, so I’ve read a couple of fae related books, but not fae focused books like this.  And I have to say, gimme more!  Which is weird because used to this would be the sort of book that annoys me, but this one.  Nope.  Nope.  It was perfect.  Just perfect.  I loved how Kagawa world builds.  She gives you just enough information, but at the same time she doesn’t info dump.  Fantasy authors, this is how it’s done.

Worst Feature: Insta Love.  It’s very unfortunate that this YA trope makes an appearance when there was already a great potential love interest in Puck.  Puck is the type of character that YA love interests should strike for.  He’s smart, snarky, and hes’ not instantly drop dead gorgeous.  He has that oh my God you’re hot and I was a moron not to recognize it early effect (a.k.a. the Michael Moscovitz effect). Ash, well, he’s hot I guess in a typical YA asshole type of way.  But whatever.  It’s all about Puck.

Appropriateness: There’s some crude language and a cruel prank.  Oh, and some fantasy violence.  Other than that though, nothing that inappropriate.

Blockbuster Worthy: Um, yeah.  This is one fantasy I would so like to make the big screen.  Here’s who I’d cast:

Meghan: AnnaSophia Robb.  She sort of looks like a faery princess, right?

Puck: Rupert Grint.  Um, yeah hot red head.  Do I need to say more?

Ash: Alex Pettyfer.  I know that Ash is suppose to have black hair, but Alex can do tortured soul pretty easy (or at least douche easy).

Overall Rating: I’m giving this one a seven out of ten.  For the most part I loved it, but boy the insta love and the villain were sort of annoying.  I will recommend this series though, especially is your fae phobic like I am.


2 thoughts on “The Iron King: Julie Kagawa

  1. I'm glad you liked it. I've her mixed reviews about the second one in this series, though I hear it picks up again with the third. So we'll see. I'm definitely going to be checking out the fae sub genre in YA more though. This is a perfect gateway book.

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