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The Iron Jackal

(Tales of the Ketty Jay #3)

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  3,585 ratings  ·  291 reviews
Things are finally looking good for Captain Frey and his crew. The Ketty Jay has been fixed up good as new. They've got their first taste of fortune and fame. And, just for once, nobody is trying to kill them. Even Trinica Dracken, Frey's ex-fiancee and long-time nemesis, has given up her quest for revenge. In fact, she's offered them a job - one that will take them deep i ...more
Hardcover, 480 pages
Published October 20th 2011 by Gollancz
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Average rating 4.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,585 ratings  ·  291 reviews


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Start your review of The Iron Jackal (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #3)
Petrik
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5/5 stars

The Iron Jackal greatly built upon the foundations that have been well-established in the first half of the series.


Despite having enjoyed the first half of the quartet, I was getting a bit scared that the fun and enjoyment of the series would start to dwindle in the third and penultimate installment of the series. I’m so glad to be proven wrong, The Iron Jackal ended up being the most fun book in the series so far. Unlike the storytelling structure in the previous two books, The Iron
...more
Evgeny
Sep 18, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
A buddy read with Sarah.

Imagine a situation which became one huge cliché in adventure, fantasy, science fiction, and thriller literature by now. Somebody asks you to steal/deliver a sealed box for a truckload of money with the condition you do not open the said box.
A mysterious box
Anybody who read more than one book in his/her life or saw a couple of summer blockbuster movies knows there is only one way to deal with the situation that guarantees a long and happy life: refuse the deal on the spot, turn away and
...more
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
My Dear Captain Frey if you Disappoint you're Dead Buddy Read (MDCFiyDyDBR™) with my Favourite The Fearless Canadian who Shall not be Named (mFTFCwSnbN™). Read his review here! ●

Actual rating: 3.5 stars. I was going to go for a 3.25 rating but mFTFCwSnbN™ has a terrible influence on me, as a consequence of which I may be growing a heart and showing signs of unsuspected kindness *shudders*

💀 Friendly warning: I lost my reviewing mojo once again. Read this thing at your own risk.

Sooooooooo, my d
...more
carol.
Nov 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of pirates
One can’t help but delight in the antics of Captain Frey of the airship The Kitty Jay. A swashbuckling rapscallion, he has an ego unsurpassed by his wit or his morals. Lately, however, he has found that his normally self-centered ethics are undergoing an uncomfortable transformation as he discovers he cares about his crew of misfits. The crew’s been together on The Kitty for awhile now, and they are finally feeling flush with success after their most recent exploits (The Black Lung Captain). The ...more
Scott  Hitchcock
Sep 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: steampunk
Book 1: 3.75*
Book 2: 4.25*
Book 3: 4.25*

When I started this series I had the preconceived notion that this would be a fun swashbuckling series and while it is it's certainly much more than that. I would have been fine with it had that been the case but these books would be getting 3*'s as a guilty pleasure.

What makes them so much better is that in each book the author give us more. More empathy for the characters and their motivation. More twists and information on the world. New and different a
...more
Jason
Feb 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2012, e-books
5 Stars

Yeeeeehhhhaaaaaawwww!  This is a steampunk jaunt that is not stop action, chasing, shooting, and firing off witty dialogue. I have loved the Tales of the Ketty Jay and have now given each of Chris Wooding's novels  5 stars. These are freaking fun steampunk novels with a science fiction and old west twist. Yes, just like Firefly, only with dirigibles instead of space ships. These are character novels as much as they are action. Now, three novels into the series, it is hard not to love all
...more
Mayim de Vries
Jun 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
“Welcome to the crew of Ketty Jay. You ain’t a member till you’ve caused at least one major catastrophe.”

At this point, for the reader of the series, Ketty Jay, a hybrid cargo hauler and a combat craft, feels like home and its crew of assorted misfits feels like a family, perhaps not a noble and decent one, but at least one that is loyal, and mordant as an added value.

This instalment brought everything I got accustomed to getting from Mr Wooding: a fast-paced, and light story infused with a he
...more
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Mar 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013

I wouldn't dare to give this anything less than five stars, or Captain Frey would come to mortify me with his demonic cutlass. Oh, and please don't tell him that 'mortify' doesn't mean killing, or that 'narcissist' doesn't mean good looking.

Darian Frey middle name should be 'Trouble' and when the opening chapter contains 'a needless gunfight' , a lot of kicks in the face, a chase around rooftops followed of course by a fall from said rooftops, the reader knows it could only get worse from here,
...more
Veronica
Jun 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Reread 2020: I'm enjoying revisiting these books via audiobook. The only voice I'm not thrilled with is Trinica's but by this point I'm more or less used to it. I like seeing the Ketty Jay crew become the little dysfunctional family that they are. My original four star rating still stands.

Ignore the cheesy cover because no one group of people can manage to get into as much trouble as the crew of the Ketty Jay. This time around the crew is trying to save Frey from an ancient curse. At the same ti
...more
jade
Apr 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: adventure flick fans who love banter, explosions, and a chaotic crew taking care of each other
Recommended to jade by: secretly carol., with the promise that book 3 was the best one and she's right
‘hey! it’s Cap’n to you now. and i’ll have you know that beneath this tough exterior i’m actually fascinatingly sensitive and complex.’

‘yeah, i’ll just bet you are. a fascinating narcissist.’

‘thanks. i am pretty brave, aren’t i?’

after political mishaps in retribution falls, a wild goose chase with ghost ships in the black lung captain, the third book in the series opens with the crew of the ketty jay pulling yet another imaginative heist -- only this time around, the consequences are
...more
Tammie
Things are finally looking good for Captain Frey and his crew. The Ketty Jay has been fixed up good as new. They've got their first taste of fortune and fame. And, just for once, nobody is trying to kill them.

I enjoyed reading The Iron Jackal, the third installment of the Tales of the Ketty Jay series. This book was probably my favorite of the series so far. I enjoyed the humor. It kept me laughing which is always a plus. The air chase in the beginning, the train robbery, the part with the bom
...more
Jokoloyo
May 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A very very fun 5-star book with notes:
1. the plots are predictable, where the aim of author when writing this series obviously to seek maximum action-packed thrills. If you want some real surprises in plots, forget about it.
2. The recipes of the action scenes are the similar with previous books of this series.

with this third book in the series, I am convinced that the author already planned whole series in details for character development. Some promises that author made on first book are paid
...more
Mimi
Oct 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book picks up where the previous one left off, with Frey and crew reaching a tentative truce with Trinica Dracken and her crew. The beginning opens with another shootout and the ending closes with (view spoiler). Frey and crew go on another quest to retrieve a mysterious artifact from Samarla, Silo's home, but this time the stakes are higher than before as Frey's life hang in the balance.

Review moved to https://covers2covers.wordpress.com/2...
...more
Kaitlin
Apr 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-sff-faves
I am having a fantastic reading month so far... pretty much all 5* reads!!

This is the third and penultimate book in the Ketty Jay series and I have to say it's still just as fantastic as the previous two in the series. By this poit we have seen a fair amount of the crew and the characters whom we've come to know and love, and in this book the focus is really drawn to the only character who is still quite a mystery to us; Silo. Naturally the characters of the Ketty Jay all have their own plots a
...more
Nathan
Fantasy Review Barn

I have a bit of a grudge against Great Britain. In 1812 they took the time out of their day to attack my great nation despite already being deep in the muck with Napoleon. And why did they attack us? Well, maybe we started it. And maybe we tried to invade Canada. But still, they could have just left us alone, right?

Or maybe I am just pissy because they have had Iron Jackal on their side of the ocean and have been hoarding it since 2011. In which case I hold no real grudge for
...more
Richard
May 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
8/10

When you pick up a book in this series you’re guaranteed fun. Every book in this series has done the unthinkable in being better than its predecessor and this is no different. Each book builds on the previous with added layers for the characters (some getting more time in specific books than others), an interesting plot, and some well plotted action. Each book starts with a bang and this outing is no different, but don’t think this is merely a dumb action book. The characterisation has reall
...more
Mpauli
Due to my huge December tbr, reviews will come up in 2015
Benji Glaab
Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: library
4.5 🌟⬆️

Yes!!! Chris Wooding nails it again. The man seemingly can do no wrong with this series. I have become very fond of these characters over the course of this adventure. I sincerely love The Tales of the Ketty Jay series. I would probably keep reading these if it was an never ending ongoing series. And I don't mean that in A GRRM ASOIF sense. I mean to say I would never grow tired of this crew and there misadventures. However, only one more tale awaits my favourite band of misfits. A tale I
...more
The Shayne-Train
Feb 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Chris Wooding gets the hat trick! The third book in his 'Ketty Jay' series is amazing, and, in my humble opinion, the best so far.

The ragtag crew of losers, miscreants, have-beens, and weirdos are back and feeling that all-for-one-and-one-for-all love. They've grown, they've gelled into a true family. And just in time for a globe-spanning fight against the clock to save the life of one of their own from a honestly frightening combination of beast, machine, and daemon.

Take your favorite episode
...more
Andy
Feb 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed the first book of the series & in part the second although the captain’s forlorn love marred my overall enjoyment, so hoping this book corrects course with less of the captain being a sap? Ie NO Trinica Pls!

Starts with a chase, which is always good, straight in the deep end! And we’re into the action, with a new acquaintance & old foes along the way..... The real charm for me though is the expansion of the ships crews’ characters as we delve into all their backstories or update th
...more
Meril
Feb 14, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sff
I got this book as part of the First Reads giveaways here--I had it on hold at the library before that--and would have been better off with the library copy as it took me almost 8 months to finish reading this book. I loved the action and adventure and relationships among the crew in the first two books but this book didn't have much of that. Just Frey mooning over Trinica again and everyone making bad decisions. I had the 4th book on a suspended hold but I just cancelled it. Wooding isn't a bad ...more
Darren
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Some time ago I posted a review of Chris Wooding's Retribution Falls, the first in his A Tale of the Ketty Jay series. Although written for the adult market and released through Orion's SFF imprint Gollancz, the publishers have noticed that it had been gaining a lot of interest from teen readers, and that first book is soon to be re-released under Orions YA imprint, Indigo. I really enjoyed Retribution Falls, and on finishing it I rushed out to buy the sequel, The Black Lung Captain, a book I fe ...more
colleen the convivial curmudgeon
I do enjoy this series, but I never quite love it.

Once again, my favorite parts were the character bits - filling in some of the back stories, and watching some of the characters grow. I do sort of wish Frey would grow up a bit more, though. It's like we're sort of meant to believe that he is, but we're never really shown it. At least not in any kind of consistent or meaningful way.

My favorite characters continue to be Jez and Crake, though it was really cool to learn more about Silo.

That said,
...more
Sookie
Oct 25, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi-fantasy
The book starts off exactly like the first two books and pretty much follows a similar pattern to its predecessors. The punches come in the right moment, elaborate action scenes which reminded me of movie scenes and an almost desperate attempt to provide character depth.

Frey gets dared and opens the package he is explicitly asked not to do so. Thus the story begins. This very idea troubled me from the start as Frey continues to do his brash things and the character remains shallow. Jez and Crake
...more
Silvana
The plot and some inner thoughts became a bit repetitive but otherwise still a very entertaining series with lots of wisecracking quips and quite a few heartbreaking moments.

The worldbuilding caught me by surprise. Apparently it kept expanding. There were some whoa moments near the end. The steampunk element reminds me of Doctor Who, with all the weird tech and creatures.

I feel bad that there is only one book left. This series is probably the most fun one I had since Gentleman Bastards. Definite
...more
Mark
Dec 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Book Three of Chris’ bucklepunk series, and things are settling down nicely. After the events of The Black Lung Captain, Darian Frey, captain of the good spaceship Ketty Jay, has been hired by his ex-fiancee, Trinicia Dracken, to retrieve and help offload a valuable artefact from a train.

Things are actually looking up for Frey. His crew have not killed each other, despite chances to do so, and he’s in employment. The Jay’s been refitted and holding together quite nicely, for a change. Such good
...more
Jen
Amazing. Amazing! This series is amazing and it just gets better and better!
Timothy Boyd
Sep 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great Steampunk story. Very interesting characters and a nice world setting. Good action throughout. Very recommended
Wiebke (1book1review)
This was a strange reading experience. I was constantly torn between enjoying the writing and characters, and being annoyed by both.
I couldn't fly through this as I had expected, somehow I had no problem taking breaks in the middle of tense and fast paced action scenes.
In the middle I really didn't like what the author did but by the end I appreciated it more.
I think it's more me than the book, but something doesn't completely work here.
...more
Daniel Burton
Mix together the swashbuckling of The Pirates of the Caribbean, a shade of fast shooting action and espionage--on horseback--of Michael Garrison's The Wild Wild West, and a bit of the personalities from Ocean's 11 (pick 1960 or 2001--it doesn't matter), and drop them all in a world with demons, magic, curses, and airships.

That would give you just a glimpse of what you can expect from The Iron Jackal, the third in Chris Wooding's Tales of the Ketty Jay. It's a fast, energetic ride, a swashbucklin
...more
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Fantasy Buddy Reads: The Iron Jackal [Jun 1, 2020] 7 14 Jun 09, 2020 07:15AM  
Fantasy Buddy Reads: The Iron Jackal [Sept 2017] 55 50 Sep 12, 2017 12:12PM  
On Board the Kett...: The Iron Jackal 1 7 May 27, 2012 06:39AM  

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1,731 followers
Chris Wooding grew up in a small town in Leicestershire, where not much of anything happened. So he started to write novels. He was sixteen when he completed his first. He had an agent by eighteen. By nineteen he had signed his first book deal. When he left university he began to write full-time, and he has been doing it professionally all his adult life.

Now thirty-nine, Chris has written over twe
...more

Other books in the series

Tales of the Ketty Jay (4 books)
  • Retribution Falls (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #1)
  • The Black Lung Captain (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #2)
  • The Ace of Skulls (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #4)

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Nature, in Her infinite awesomeness, can provide solace even when you’re stuck in the house. As a matter of fact, the numbers suggest that...
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“If there was one thing worse than being cheated, it was being cheated by someone who referred to themselves in the third person.” 27 likes
“On reflection,’ Crake said to Frey, as they huddled behind an upturned table, ‘this wasn’t one of your better plans.” 9 likes
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