The iron daughter follows on not long after the events that took place in the iron king. Megan is being held in the Winter court by Queen Mab due to t...moreThe iron daughter follows on not long after the events that took place in the iron king. Megan is being held in the Winter court by Queen Mab due to the bargain Megan made with Ash to save her brother. Ash has been absent this whole time leaving Megan alone and confused wondering if Ash really did care for her or not, was this all just a game to him in order to get Megan to the Winter court? When Megan does finally see Ash he is distant, aloof and rude to her which makes Megan even more confused because she loves him, why is he being like this? It soon becomes clear that Ash is only trying to protect Megan, if his mother or Rowan (Ash’s brother) knew how either Megan or he felt for each other they would both be in trouble, as they would use this against them, showing your feelings in the winter court is seen as a weakness. Soon however Megan and Ash are thrown together again when the sceptre of the seasons is stolen from the Winter court by the iron fey. Megan and Ash must find the sceptre and bring it back or war will break out between winter and summer which could have devastating consequences for the whole Nevernever.
Julie Kagawa has done it again and managed to write a book full of action, suspense and romance, that I could not put down. Megan really comes into her own in this book, she is strong, intelligent and fiercely loyal. I really felt for her at the start of the book with Ash gone and then suddenly reappearing but being distant, she had to suffer the cold winter court all alone. I really admired her decision to try and find the sceptre once it was stolen instead of going home (which she could have) because she understood the dire consequences that could result if it’s not returned and she also realised that she is part of this world whether she want to be or not.
You may be wondering like I was for the first couple of pages where is Puck? Well fear not all you Puck admirers Puck is back! I love Puck he is such a fun character, but I am torn between who I want Megan to end up with, it’s clear that both Puck and Ash love Megan. At the start of the book it was Puck then it was Ash, then Puck and then Ash again, oh my either way someone’s going to get hurt. I’ll just say one of them is not going to be happy at the end of the book. I got the feeling that whilst Ash does really love Megan he is still very much in love with his old love which can’t be easy for Megan or Ash. During one of my team Ash phases my heart just broke when Ash told her that it is impossible for them be together because he’s a winter fey and she is summer, it’s forbidden, I found myself shouting at the screen it doesn’t matter you love each other who cares about everyone else!
My favourite sarcastic cat, Grimalkin, is also back as is a surprising new ally that was in the iron king, let’s just say I was not expecting that. There are also new and old enemies revealed, one particular character, whilst they weren’t the nicest still came out of the blue. Throughout the book I got the feeling that there is more to Megan than meets the eye concerning her ability with the iron fey which will most probably be elaborated on in the next book. I also hope there is more on a certain person Megan meets but at first can’t remember who he is (for a reason), you’ll understand what I mean when you read the book.
The ending was great and unexpected I literally have no idea what’s going to happen next, I can’t wait for the iron queen, February 2011 so far away. I also should note I got my hands on a copy of the iron daughter ARC ebook courtesy of netGalley and the publisher (thanks!). (less)
Move over Seth, I have found not one but two new swoon worthy characters that will give you a run for your money, Niall and Irial, thank you Melissa M...moreMove over Seth, I have found not one but two new swoon worthy characters that will give you a run for your money, Niall and Irial, thank you Melissa Marr. Now with that out of the way I can begin my review ….
I have to admit I was a bit skeptical about this book at first when I heard that Ink Exchange was not a continuation of Aislinn, Seth and Keenan’s story but instead focused on Aislinn’s friend Leslie, Keenan’s advisor Niall and the King of the Dark Court Irial. Oh how wrong I was, I could kick myself for having this sit next to my bedside table for months without reading it, shame on me!
Ink Exchange begins with Leslie, a mortal friend of Aislinn’s we met briefly in Wicked Lovely, who has had a difficult life since her mother left. Her father is a drunk and never around and her brother Ren is a drug addict who did an unforgivable thing to Leslie. In order to get some control over her life Leslie decides she needs to get a tattoo (I’m not sure why a tattoo would help but hey each to their own) but she can never find the perfect one. Finally after months of searching she sees one that calls to her, once she see it Leslie knows it’s her tattoo. However, little does she know the consequences that will follow this decision. Suddenly and unbeknownst to Leslie she is being followed by Dark Court faeries, these events worry Aislinn who asks Niall, who has a long history with the Dark King, to keep a closer watch on Leslie. This particular task is difficult for Niall when he is finding it harder to control his growing feelings towards Leslie especially when he knows he cannot touch her as his touch is addictive. With the completion of Leslie’s tattoo she abruptly finds herself bound to the swoon worthy Dark King Irial who needs her in order to feed off human emotions so he can in turn feed his court. Suddenly Leslie is thrown into the faeries world of politics and deceit.
Marr never shied away from dealing with the difficult issues that were dealt with in the book particularly Leslie’s rape which we lean about early in the novel. Marr does an excellent job getting into Leslie’s head, we see her fears and worries, as a reader I really felt for Leslie I wanted to give her a big hug and say everything is going to be alright.
A major theme throughout the novel was that of addiction, Leslie’s father was an alcoholic, her brother was a drug addict and Leslie herself became addicted to Irial, craving his touch. Whilst her brother and father were not able to overcome their addictions, Leslie showed just how strong a character she was by overcoming her addiction and surviving. Leslie understood what was happening to herself and knew she needed to change even though it would cause her pain in the beginning.
For all his faults especially what he put Leslie and Niall through I could not dislike Irial. There were no sinister motivations for his actions they were all based on his need to help his fae. It’s a credit to Marr’s writing that Irial and his court were not simply one dimensional, it would have been easy to put them in the evil box and leave it at that, but there were so many different layers. Whilst some of the things that went on in the court in order for them to survive were unpleasant they were necessary. Irial also softened as he grew closer to Leslie, falling in love with her, a mortal, who he knew he would eventually destroy. On the other hand I felt that some of things Keenan did were improper especially when he knew Leslie was a good friend of Aislinn’s. He also managed to push Niall away which really annoyed me especially when Niall was such a loyal advisor and friend. I loved getting to know more about Niall especially his past with Irial which definitely shaped who he was now. He was so torn between his duty to his King and his feelings for Leslie. In the end Keenan made the choice easy for him.
The ending wasn’t what you could call a traditional ending, but I think that’s really refreshing because things don’t always turn out how you want them to in real life. I could understand Leslie’s reasoning and choices in the end but it still made me a little sad.
Ink Exchange will not disappoint, it’s a dark yet engrossing read that had me captivated from the start. I found Melissa’s magical faery world just flowed off the pages into my imagination. All three of the main characters had depth to them and were well developed. I emotionally connected with all three even though sometimes I didn’t agree with their actions I could understand why they did what they did.
Marr never took the easy route with this story especially the ending which, whilst heart wrenching and strangely uplifting at the same time, was really the only appropriate way to end.
Whilst it’s definitely a darker read than Wicked Lovely fans of Marr will not be disappointed, I know I wasn’t.
*I should also mention for all you Aislinn, Seth and Keenan fans out there they do appear in the novel however briefly.
From the time of her birth Aislinn has always seen the faeries. For Aislinn it’s like a curse which was passed down from her grandmother to her mother...moreFrom the time of her birth Aislinn has always seen the faeries. For Aislinn it’s like a curse which was passed down from her grandmother to her mother to Aislinn. In order to live a relatively normal life Aislinn tries to ignore what she sees but it’s difficult when she sees them just about everywhere and let me tell you some of those faeries are evil! In order to try and live with this Aislinn’s grandmother has ingrained in her since birth three rules she must follow because she must never reveal that she has the sight to the faeries who knows what they will do. One of the only person who acts as a calming presence in her life is her best friend (and maybe something more) Seth. Suddenly Aislinn’s whole life is turned upside down when she notices she is being followed by two faeries, Donia and Keenan who happens to be the Summer King in search for his Summer Queen who Keenan believes is Aislinn. Suddenly Aislinn finds herself talking to the faeries that she has been terrified of her whole life trying desperately to ward off Keenan.
I loved the whole premise of this novel, I haven’t read anything like it before. I found Aislinn to be strong character, even though she managed to keep her sight hidden her whole life and was scared of the faeries she still had the courage to confront Keenan (especially when the subject was about Seth) and revealed her sight to both Donia and Keenan. I couldn’t warm to Keenan, I don’t know what it was and I really didn’t want Aislinn to end up with him I really wanted to see her with Seth. Ah Seth, who doesn’t like a bad boy with piercings and tattoos, but don’t be fooled he may look tough but deep down he is a really great guy who adores Aislinn and would do anything for her. I loved how their relationship developed throughout the novel. The only issue I had (and its small) was how easy Seth believed Aislinn when she told him about her sight, it was like Aislinn: ‘I see faeries and they’re bad’, Seth: ‘oh okay that’s weird I’ll help you and go to the library and read some books about faeries’. I know you’ll say but it’s a fantasy book what do you expect but I guess I thought it would have taken a bit longer to convince him that’s all. Keenan’s mother the Winter Queen was a real piece of work I’m glad to say she got what was coming to her! I also thought it was really ingenious how Marr started each chapter with quotes from books written about faries from the 1800s you could see how she woved the faery lore into her book.
I can’t wait to get immersed into the faery world again when I read the next chapter in the series ‘Ink Exchange’. (less)
** WARNING: Once you start to read this book you won’t be able to put it down, yes it's that good! **
This book hooked me in from the start with the am...more** WARNING: Once you start to read this book you won’t be able to put it down, yes it's that good! **
This book hooked me in from the start with the amazing characters, I absolutely adored Puck, and the enchanting faery mythology, which I just love. From the get go the iron kings sucks you in and doesn’t stop, there is never a lull like in some books, I was on the edge of my seat the entire time.
The imagination Julie Kagawa is amazing! What can I say, the whole world she created was so unique, especially the iron kingdom where she wove farey mythology and man kinds increasing reliance on science and technology together to indicate why the iron kingdom exists and the terrible impact it was and will continue to have on the nevernever.
Meghan was a strong heroine who really developed as a character throughout the book, at the start she was apprehensive and scared travelling through the Nevernever to find her brother but by the end of the book with all the situations she has gone through she is a lot stronger and more confident. I loved how she would do anything for the people she loved, that really endeared her to me. Whilst I really liked Megan as a character Puck was my favourite, he was the joker always there to put a smile on Megan’s face. I mean who doesn’t like a funny boy? Then there is Ash, Megan’s love interest who weirded me out a bit at the start of the novel but as we got to know more about Ash and saw his relationship with Megan develop I began to soften to him (especially when they were in the iron kingdom), then towards the end I was like ‘kiss her you fool! Cant you see she likes you!’ I felt he was a very complex character and I can’t help but think there is still much more to find out about Ash in the next book. Ohh I almost forgot to mention Grimalkin the talking cat! Yes there is a talking cat, loves it!
I can’t wait for the next installment, the iron daughter, only a couple more months until August, but it seems so long away… (less)