NetGalley Review: The Iron Knight (Iron Fey #4) by Julie Kagawa
The Iron Knight (Iron Fey #4)
By Julie Kagawa
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- ISBN-13: 9780373210367
- Publisher: Harlequin
- Publication date: 10/25/2011
- Pages: 400
- Series: Iron Fey Series, #4
- Review Source: NetGalley
My name—my True Name—is Ashallayn’ darkmyr Tallyn. I am the last remaining son of Mab, Queen of the Unseelie Court. And I am dead to her. My fall began, as many stories do, with a girl…
To cold faery prince Ash, love was a weakness for mortals and fools. His own love had died a horrible death, killing any gentler feelings the Winter prince might have had. Or so he thought.
Then Meghan Chase—a half human, half fey slip of a girl—smashed through his barricades, binding him to her irrevocably with his oath to be her knight. And when all of Faery nearly fell to the Iron fey, she severed their bond to save his life. Meghan is now the Iron Queen, ruler of a realm where no Winter or Summer fey can survive.
With the unwelcome company of his archrival, Summer Court prankster Puck, and the infuriating cait sith Grimalkin, Ash begins a journey he is bound to see through to its end—a quest to find a way to honor his vow to stand by Meghan’s side.
To survive in the Iron Realm, Ash must have a soul and a mortal body. But the tests he must face to earn these things are impossible. And along the way Ash learns something that changes everything. A truth that challenges his darkest beliefs and shows him that, sometimes, it takes more than courage to make the ultimate sacrifice.
My Take on The Iron Knight:
What an epic finale to what I am sure is a grand series. I must admit, I haven’t read any of the previous novels, but when I saw this title available on NetGalley I knew I had to have it. Since 2010 with the release of the first book in the Iron Fey Series, The Iron King, I’ve heard great admiration from friends and family members about the series. Needless to say, it piqued my curiosity and quickly became a high priority on my TBR pile. Words cannot describe how phenomenally well written The Iron Knight was, and how much it exceeded my expectations. Woven within its pages was a magnificent story of self-discovery, loyalty, friendship, and love.
Unlike the other novels in the series, The Iron Knight is told from the perspective of Ash, the former prince of the UnSeelie Winter Court. The story is his journey and the lengths that he would travel, from the end of the world and every place far in-between; so that he could live happily ever after with the woman he loved, Meghan. His venture to obtain a soul was anything but fun and games. At times he was brutally challenged, leading him to question his choices, his life, and his worth. And if that wasn’t hard enough, Kagawa threw in a clever plot twist, raising a certain woman from Ash’s past back from the dead, creating more tension and turmoil for our love-struck hero. It was definitely a test of his character seeing how Ash would respond to every situation or hardship that was thrown his way. And as the story progressed, readers are able to see his perception of life and his friends change for the better, making him a solid well-rounded character despite his many faults.
The side characters in The Iron Knight are truly some of my favorites form this year. It was definitely a team of unlikely companions and each added something fun and exciting to the story, making it a dark and ominous tale instead of fun or light-hearted. Puck or Robin Goodfellow, Ash’s friend turned enemy, turned friend again, was hilarious to read. He was witty, charming and always had a smart-alecky comment for every sticky situation. Although he was in love with the same woman as Ash, he helped the “ice-boy” with his quest and never once questioned why he was doing it. That says a lot about him as a character, and I can’t wait to read a bit of his story in Summer’s Crossing (Iron Fey #3.5). Another surprise character I loved was the legendary Big Bad Wolf. His banter with Grimalkin the cat was fun to read. Each added another level to the story, often offering up their own opinions of Ash’s situation and their distaste for Puck. I thoroughly enjoyed their love-hate relationship and I think others will find the comical duo pleasantly entertaining.
Overall, The Iron Knight is one of those books you expect to be great and it turns out to be so much more. It’s fresh, enjoyable, adventurous, sprinkled with myth and fables, and makes for one impressive finale. Julie Kagawa is a one-of-a-kind writer and her presence on the page commands your attention. I am really looking forward to diving into the rest of the novels from this series to see how such a world began. If you haven’t had the pleasure of reading The Iron Knight, I implore you to give it a try.
5 out of 5 Controllers
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“You’re here,” I murmured, reaching out to touch him, hardly believing this was real. “You came back.” Ash’s breath hitched, and he put his hand over mine.
“I came home.” –Meghan and Ash
“I have come from the End of the World… From the River of Dreams, through the gauntlet and the Briar and the Deep Wyld, in order to stand before you today. I have but one request – to take my place at your side. To resume my duty as your knight, and to protect you and your kingdom for as long as I draw breath.” –Ash
“I remembered this perfectly; every shining moment with Ariella was forever etched into my mind. What we’d had, what we’d shared, everything. I’d built a shrine to her in my memories, carefully tended with grief and anger and regret. I knew every inch of our relationship, the passion, the feeling of emptiness when we weren’t together, the longing and, yes, the love. I had been in love with Ariella. I remembered what she’d meant to me once, what I’d felt for her then…and what I didn’t feel for her now.” –Ash
“For years, I protected her, biding my time, until the day she went into the Nevernever after her brother. And then you came along. And I saw how she looked at you. And for the first time, I wanted to kill you as much as you wanted to kill me.” –Puck