3 Star Review: The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa

“Why are you here, Grim?”
“Is it not obvious?” Grimalkin yawned and looked at each of us in turn. “The same reason I am always here, human. To keep you from falling down a dark hole or wandering into a giant spider’s nest.”

No one in this book would’ve gotten an inch near the false king if it weren’t for this cat. No. One.

While Meghan has grown quite a bit in this book since the previous, I still remain that if Grim hadn’t saved her ass (repeatedly, might I add) she wouldn’t have succeeded. Ironic, considering she resents his presence every time he shows up. Seriously, girl. Have some appreciation.

I can’t believe I actually enjoyed this book. The first time I picked up, I had to DNF it. I rarely leave books. If I’m not in the mood for a certain book, I’ll put it down for a bit. But I don’t flat out abandon a book. I was ridiculously fed up with Meghan’s antics. She’s so prone to jumping to conclusions and saying things just to anger people when she’s pissed off. If you’re going to insult some one, mean it. Don’t fucking act like a child, just because things don’t go your way. Get a grip, woman.

But this time, I began to recognize the level to which Meghan has changed since the first book. She’s actually sticking up for herself, she’s coming into her own as the daughter of the Summer King (and admitting it), and she’s picked up a sword. I’ve been waiting for her to start fighting for herself both verbally and physically. Ash or Puck are always the ones shoving her behind their asses so she won’t get a little scratch.

Summary:

Meghan and Ash have been exiled from The Nevernever. The false King is becoming stronger and his war on the Summer and Winter Courts reaches to dangerous heights. The tree’s have become iron…and the beauty of Nevernever is not as it used to be. Both Mab and Oberon fear for their lives as well as their people. The Summer and Winter Courts want her help. They have a proposition for her.

Meghan is the only one who can defeat the Iron King. She’s both of Iron and of Summer. No Faery would be able to walk within the land of Iron and survive. The very air would kill them. Meghan has agreed to fight their war for them, but along the way she learns that it isn’t their war alone. It’s hers. She’s half faery and it affect those she loves most: Ash and Puck.

The Characters:

Meghan changed some in this book, but not enough for me to be satisfied; particularly because her perspective finishes with book. I had hoped her personality would mature more. I would’ve liked less fused anger and pouting, this time around.

“There are more important things to think about. We should be concentrating on your training, and what we’re going to do about the false king once it’s time. He’s still out there, looking for you.”
I pouted, not liking that statement.

Really, Meghan. Really? The little girl pout is not something a mature girl would do, especially a girl who’s gone through the shit you’ve gone through. Let’s not re-enact the old Britney Spears video where she’s twirling her hair like an innocent little girl.

One more thing to add to the bunch:

Megan Chase, this way.
A faint glow emitted from the center of the ruins, drawing me to it like a moth to a flame. Without saying anything, I started walking toward it.

Yes. Listen to the mysterious unknown voice, Meghan. Nothing bad could happen.

This is a classic example of what not to do and yet she does it. It’s like in those old horror flicks where the girl walks towards a whispering voice, without knowing what the hell she’s getting herself into. And what happens to those girls?

As for Ash and Meghan, they go through something altogether new. They’re a couple. They kiss. They flirt. They make go-go eyes at each other. I liked this. They weren’t without their dramatic moments, but I liked seeing them together. It was refreshing and wonderful. Ash makes everything better. It’s why I’m giving this book a higher rating.

Puck:

Puck is where the humor comes in. Because even when Meghan tries to be funny, it’s pathetically not. Ash can be funny, but it’s really not in his nature to do so. Puck isn’t as great at deadpan humor as Grim, but he still has quite the lines.

I’m actually surprised with where his character has gone. I’m also slightly skeptical, as well. I’m not sure that he would’ve gotten over Meghan’s betrayal as he seems to have. This book doesn’t take over a huge time line. It’s a very short time frame. In real life, my experience is that people take a while to get over people when they’ve fallen in love with someone. Puck really did love Meghan, more than a friend. I think her rejection should’ve taken a lot longer for him to get over than it did. The circumstances may have been dire, but Puck didn’t seem as heartbroken as I’ve seen close friends go through. We go through our pain with time. While he is a faery, from what I understand of Kagawa’s world, they deal with emotions on a higher level once they fall in love. So I find it a little difficult to believe he was able to so quickly come to forgive Meghan.

Grim:

I don’t need to say much about Grim, except:

“Bravo,” Grimalkin deadpanned, rolling his eyes. “The light bulb finally comes on.”

How do you not love Grim. He’s got a classic type of deadpan humor that fails to amuse.

The Writing:

I love Julie Kagawa’s writing. She’s very consistent in her world building. It’s very hard to pinpoint where she’s made a mistake. I’m sure there’s some, but I can’t recognize any. I do feel she’s a little trigger happy with some words, like tension and adrenaline. Her writing is so fast paced and quick, yet she also gives the reader time to adjust to what’s happening.

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