Monday, 9 August 2010

Review for The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

Ok I have a slight confession to make. I’ve been procrastinating and trying to put off doing this review for a while for several reasons. The main two being that I don’t want to be verbally attacked and I really don’t know what to say about this book. I guess I better start at the beginning. So I was really looking forward to reading this, in case you’ve been living under a rock for the last few months it’s one of those books that a lot of people are raving about. So I saved if for a weekend when I wanted something really amazing to read and at first I loved it. I loved Julie Kagawa’s writing and I loved awkward dorky Meghan and her best friend Robbie/Puck and things were going great until something happened that really disturbed me. They entered faerie land through the back of a closet. I had a slight sense of Déjà vu at that point and thought I was re-reading The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe and shook it off, but then bits from a bunch of my favourite stories kept showing up. It was like reading a mish mash of Narnia, Alice in Wonderland, A fairytale, Peter Pan, Labyrinth and The Never-ending story all merged into one - rather unabashedly so at that. That seriously lowered this books standards for me because to be frank anyone can coble together a story with bits of all their favourite tales give it a title and put their name to it. So this really didn’t showcase Julie Kagawa’s ability to story tell for me. Whilst reading the middle of this book I wanted to put it down so many times. The Meghan I loved at the beginning of the book turned into a whiny weakling who was constantly getting herself kidnapped or putting herself in unnecessary danger. And the middle was action packed but not in the usual way that I like. It seemed really stupid the amount of times Meghan got into trouble and yet she always miraculously found someway to escape. Because there was so much action going on you barely got any interaction time with the characters making me feel like I didn’t get to know them as well as I would have liked and making the friendships Meghan made seem a little bit unrealistic. Then at the end things changed around again. I loved the ending. Julie finally brings some originality to the book with the Iron fey and Meghan finally develops a back bone. The end of the book really made me want to read the next book The Iron Daughter and so I closed the book very confused about my feelings towards it. I loved both Puck and Ash towards the end and I really began to like Meghan again once she became a bit more kick ass. But the middle of the book was a real let down. I don’t know if I’ll be buying the sequel and I don’t know if I’d recommend this book. I can see why people love it and I can see why people wouldn’t like it. I just hope that with The Iron Daughter Kagawa focuses more on the Iron fey than trying to rip off other great stories, if she does and if Meghan continues to grow as a character it’ll be an amazing read. If she keeps mish mashing other stories and Meghan gets kidnapped numerous times then I’ll probably give it a miss. Over all I give this book a 3.5, you might love it you might hate it, this ones a bit of a risk taker. One to borrow or buy when you’re feeling reckless. My Rating 3.5/5 stars ***1/2


  1. This is what I'm reading right now. I'm only on chapter eight, but I most certainly agree with you. I just got to the part where the book first introduces the "Grimalkin" or you know, pretty much the Cheshire cat from Alice in Wonderland. The only real reason I haven't given up completely on the book is because I received an ARC of The Iron Daughter for review so I'm forcing myself to finish and praying that the next book is better.

  2. Hi Lisa, I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels this way but I’m also sad that your not enjoying the book too. Yeah Grimalkin should have an aka next to his name with Cheshire cat following it up. I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled for your review on The Iron Daughter to see if you liked it any better.

  3. With the first book, I only gave it a 8.5/10. But the reasons I liked it seem to be the reason you disliked it. I loved how my favorite characters from other stories were showing up.

    Iron Daughter was sooo much better though! Don't give up on the series yet!

  4. Yeah I did think whilst I was reading it I bet with all the tie in’s to other books people either love it or hate it. I am keeping my eye on reviews for The Iron Daughter so I can make up my mind if I want to read it or not :)

  5. I totally agree with you. 3.5/5 was a good rating for this book. It was a borrower.

  6. I LOVE The Iron King!

    But I have heard that it does resemble other stories. I'm not too familiar with a lot of the ones people reference so that's probably why I enjoyed it so much. But other than that, I figure that a lot of fairy tales are similar :)


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