Review: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

The Iron Fey #1

The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

Title: The Iron King (The Iron Fey #1)
Author: Julie Kagawa
Genre:  Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher:  Mira Ink (21st January 2011)

My name is Meghan Chase.

In less than twenty-four hours I’ll be sixteen. Countless  stories and songs have been written about this wonderful age, when a girl finds true love and the stars shine for her . . .



Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan’s life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fitted in at school . . . or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar and her little brother is taken, Meghan senses that everything she’s known is about to change.

She could never have guessed the truth. Meghan is the daughter of a faery king and a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will have to choose between a normal life and her magical destiny – and between her best friend and a darkly dangerous prince.

It’s time for Meghan to enter the faery world . . .

Rating: ****
(4 stars)

The Iron King is the first book in Julie Kagawa’s The Iron Fey series. Mum got me this book because of my interest in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, as some of the characters in the play feature in the series.

This was a really good read.

The main plot of this book, that Meghan’s little brother is stolen away by the fey, reminded me a little bit of The Labyrinth (1986) but without the wishing away of the child. Meghan’s love of her little brother is very clear even before she realises he has been taken. I loved the twists and turns of the plot as we follow Meghan in her quest to get her brother home.

Meghan is a very interesting character. On the surface she appears to fit the good girl archetype, but  she knows her own mind and has a strong backbone. Meghan always tries to do her best. I think she copes really well when she ends up in the faery world, but there were times when I wanted to bang my head on a desk as she made “classic” mistakes – maybe because I read fairy stories as a child and I like reading books about the fae I had an unfair advantage? – but they were believable ones and helped to move the plot forward. I thought Kagawa wrote Meghan’s companions on her quest really well, they had definite personalities. I particularly loved the way Kagawa wrote Meghan’s best friend – he was completely awesome.

Whilst there was a single main plot, there were also several subplots all of which I enjoyed discovering. These subplots also helped to convey the danger of the faery world and its inhabitants, which I thought was a brilliant way to let the reader know just how dangerous the world could be. Kagawa definitely has some interesting and original ideas about the fey which she explores in this book.

If you’re a fan of the faery world then this is definitely a book to try.

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