Title: The Iron King
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: The Iron Fey
E.S.C.A.P.E Score: 30
(see below for breakdown)
MY NAME IS MEGHAN CHASE.
In less than twenty-four hours, I’ll be sixteen. Countless stories, songs and poems have been written about this wonderful age, when a girl finds true love and the stars shine for her and the handsome prince carries her off into the sunset.
I DON’T THINK IT WILL BE THAT WAY FOR ME.
Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan Chase’s life, ever since her father disappeared when she was six. Ten years later, when her little brother also goes missing, Meghan learns the truth—she is the secret daughter of a mythical faery king and a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she’ll go to save someone she loves, 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.
This really is a Classic YA book, which seeing as it was published in 2010 is not surprising. Some may see the fact it contains all the familiar tropes from love triangles to chosen ones as a negative but this was just plain fun. I tend to refer to these books as Cheese burger books. Cheese burgers are not necessarily good for you but they taste awesome! Cheeseburger books don’t have the best writing, or the most complex plots, they can be predictable, but they are fun to read, you enjoy them while you are reading them and that is all that really matters in the end.
It has everything you would expect from a Classic YA Fey based novel. We have Megan, our just turned 16 mostly clueless with moments cunning Choosen one, two hunky immortal beings that happen to look and act exactly like 16 year old boys apart from the unfathomable sexiness and magical powers, and a surly uninterested animal guide that always seems to get teenagers out of the shit they get themselves into along the way. Do the inclusion of all these expected characters and tropes make this any less enjoyable. No they don’t. I loved that I knew I was going to find Megan frustrating, that I was going to grown at the love triangle and root for it too (don’t know what team I am on yet) and that by far I would identify most with the surly presenting, yet actually cares deep down, sassy talking animal companion!
This was FUN! There is nothing wrong with books just being fun and not breaking the boundaries or pushing the envelope, it is ok to just be entertained. And entertain me this did. I liked the incorporation of classic fairy tales and mythology we all know, mixed with Shakespearian retellings to create such a vast world in which Megan finds herself. The plot has a little bit of Alice in Wonderland, a little bit Labyrinth, some Romeo and Juliet and Midsummer Nights Dream etc.
I like how that gave depth to the background characters without overly explaining the relationships or how this world functioned as they were already very well established by other texts. It allowed us to get swept into Megan’s journey while still getting some richness to the world around her.
The overall message from the plot is a bit cringe. Even at the time written, its anti-progress/invention take on going green and getting back to nature is a bit eyeroll. It is however a quick read. I found it entertaining but I wasn’t going in expecting miracles I was going into it expecting 2010s YA and that is exactly what I got! I think I will happily continue with the series as it was fun!
Thank you Dave from TheWriteReads who challenged me to read this as one of my January Friend Picks my TBR.