Isamlq's Reviews > The Iron Thorn

The Iron Thorn by Caitlin Kittredge
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's review
Nov 27, 2010

really liked it

It's a good thing this has a little over 500 pages, otherwise it would have been too much. The author throws in everything! And surprise of surprises, I enjoyed it! I am not saying it was perfect. In fact, there is a specific clump of pages I could have just done without. But all in all, IRON THORN was quite satisfying.

One complaint though: the reader shouldn’t be tasked with having to figure out how to say the lead’s name. I mean, “Aoife”. It took me several tries to figure out how to roll my tongue to come up with a believable/right sounding name… and I’m still not sure I was/am saying it right.

Let me just say that the first fifty pages were AWESOME. There is no other way to describe why page after page after page just flew by! To bad the awesomeness stalled around page fifty... only to kick back into gear around p 160!

I really enjoyed the characters in this one. They are, all of them, not as they seem (And I really do mean all of tnem.) Then there's the world that they live in. I also enjoyed all the twists in it (and there are a lot.) So here goes,

She's is a ward of the state. With her mother is in a madhouse, she goes to a school where she disagrees with half the things taught (re: Heretics.) In her blood, it is said, lies madness. A madness that drives her away from her mother. A madness that caused her brother to almost kill her. In a few, she turns sixteen when her madness might be triggered. Madness being just the first step to being virally decimated. Those infected devolve. Add on the fact that Her world is one divided between Rationalists and heretics. The former look down on the latter as “those who reject reality and substituted the fantastical lie of magic and conjuring for science and logic…” Cool, right?

The problem is by the time her world and its background had settled enough in my head she started sounding like a drip: (a.) she is like a lot of teenagers has a love/hate thing going on with her mother. (b.) She hates her situation, complains (to herself) about how everyone sees her in a certain light, but does nothing about it! That is, until her absentee brother pops in the picture. (c.) Then there’s the way she treated her BFF, Cal and later on Dean(!)

Once they get to where they need to go, things get much better (or different?). One, I was expecting a Leviathan/Behemoth i.e. a lack of romance compensated for by other aspects like action or mystery, but that was not the case here. The change in relationship between the characters took me by surprise. It seemed contrived. As if the author felt something absent and decided to plunk the girl into more trouble… (Let’s put them in the impossible situation of having him them like her!) THANKFULLY, that was not the focus of IRON THORN.

I had a Clockwork Angel moment too when Conrad’s role became clear. A girl in search of her missing brother in a steampunk-ish novel. Sounding familiar yet? With nothing held against CA, I am thankful (again) that the similarities are superficial! IRON THORN is so much more. It’s darker and edgier. So dark in fact, that I could practically hear the moans of those in Doctor Portnoy’s care, and the shrieks of those falling from the bridge. So edgy, I could practically imagine the mist around her.

And if steampunk and a missing brother ala-Clockwork Angel aren’t enough to convince you, well, why don’t we throw in some Fey. Apparently her life wasn’t complicated enough… BUT I loved it! The fey aspect in this one raised the creepy factor up a couple of notches (if that's possible.)

With so many things going on, some might be tempted to chuck it. I would have done so, but after page 160 the story just flows. Reading on, I found myself liking the characters more, curious about what they would do and what would happen to them. So, the length of the book makes sense. Nothing short of 500 could fairly contain all the details in the book. In the end, IRON THORN worked for me. The boring part (pp 50ish-150ish) was mind numbingly boring… but that was offset by the good parts which were absolutely just that~ good!

I am looking forward to the rest of this series.
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Reading Progress

November 27, 2010 – Shelved
March 8, 2011 – Started Reading
March 8, 2011 –
0.0% "dark! me likey.."
March 8, 2011 –
0.0% "with what Ive read so far.. im leaning toward 4 stars... *plese keep the rest of the book as good as the first bit*\n Now, how the heck do you say her name? (Aoife)"
March 9, 2011 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Precious (new)

Precious Can't wait to see your review!

Isamlq Precious wrote: "Can't wait to see your review!"

I'm liking what I'm getting so far...

message 3: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Aoife is pronounced Ee-fa. It's a Gaelic name, I'm pretty sure :)

Allison I can second what Rebecca says- I'm listening to the audiobook and the name, as they say it, sounds almost like Eva but with an F instead of a V. When I saw it written, I was pretty surprised!

Veronica I say Oy-fee, haha.

message 6: by Piseog (new)

Piseog It's pronounced EE-FAH. It's a very common Irish name. For once I like to see a name I recognise.

message 7: by Rebecca (new) - added it

Rebecca i googled it lol

message 8: by Lana (new)

Lana Del Slay "Eeef-ah". It's a fairly common Irish name, isn't it?

Kate Cowan Ee-fa? oooh, lol, I've been thinking "Eye-O-fie" this whole time ><

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