Grace's Reviews > The Iron King

The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
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Apr 22, 12

bookshelves: fantasy, magic, ya

Pros: Author has a good imagination and is able to create different worlds with incredibly picturesque creatures.

Cons: Characters are incredibly weak.

This is not a book where the end ties up all the premises in the beginning. This is simply an adventure book into a pre-created world (albeit very picturesque and descriptive) by which a normal, extremely poor girl (or so she thought) finds that she is the daughter of King Oberon (of the faeries) tries to find her half-brother and bring him back. Sort of like Hunger Games, wherein the main character tries to substitute herself for her sister, but in no way was this action in the Iron King as persuasive. You don't really get that she would do anything for her brother, and she's sort of weak to begin with, so that's even more unpersuasive. Also, she had a chance to "consider" her choices, so her going was just not very convincing. Am I getting the point across that her motivation was not convincing at all?

The likelihood of an alliance between Puck and Ash is also similarly unconvincing, especially since it is brought on by Meghan, the weakling. While, her weakness is probably realistic (I mean, how many of us would go stomping into worlds with which we're not familiar?), it is not conducive in a character that gets embroiled in all sorts of adventures. Seriously, if you're going to be cowering all the time, the "sudden" courage to do things is not really very convincing.

Also, the fact that Puck would throw everything away to help her...I'm not understanding why Puck really likes her in the first place. Also, she won't leave Ash, but will leave Puck, the boy she grew up with, when he's passed out cold? Yeah, real nice.

Apparently, this is the first in the series and the lowest rated one, so I might give the others a go, since they're rated quite high, but this first one did not convince me as to the validity of their quest, the characters did not stand out (except for Puck), there's no reason why Grimalkin would tag along for the ride. None of the characters' motivations really go together with their pre-established characters, and it just seems like they were forced together for the sake of this book. Meghan's obsession with Ash, the "terrible and beautiful boy," is a bit gag-worthy. I mean, we get that she's a normal girl who had a crush on some stupid, brainless jock. I guess she's just too normal to be a kickass heroine. She definitely is not kickass or heroine-like. She's kind of a brainless person to whom things happen. I mean, over and over again, Puck or Grimalkin warn her to not do things, and she still does them anyway (brainless). She's drawn to a creepy boy who wants to kill her. She forgets about her childhood friend so she can be with the creepy boy. She makes crappy, death-bringing bargains even though people warn her not to. If I were Oberon, I would have drowned her first.

However, the writing is not overly wordy and terrible, and was convincing enough for me to want to read the whole thing. However, characters were crappy -- I'm convinced that everyone gushing over Ash are into the whole teeny-bopper emo thing, or whatever is the current fad. Puck is probably the only likable character, but he's not in half the book.
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