The last three months, I was on a blogging hiatus. I missed writing up reviews of several books, but would still like to give my overall thoughts.
Overdue Book Review = Read in August 2012
By Julie Kagawa
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Big Themes: Love Triangle, Quest, Fairy Lore, Humanity
SPOILER ALERT: This review contains many spoilers. Proceed with caution...
Summary: When Meghan becomes the Iron Queen and takes on the responsibilities of her kingdom, she and Ash can no longer be together because her very kingdom is poisonous to him. Ash, the faery ice prince, is determined to find a way to be with Meghan again, even if it means becoming human... and mortal.
What I Liked:
The Big Bad Wolf: I thought his character was pretty cool, but I think I have a thing for bad guys changing over to the good side. I liked the reasoning behind why he was so powerful because it really fit with the world-building that Kagawa had already established in the series.
The Three Trials to Become Human: This was by far the most impressive part of the book for me. The trials were well thought out and purposeful. They really made it clear what Ash was giving up to become human, but also made the reader reflect on what it means to be human. I was about to write this book off as a failure until I got to this part, and it totally saved the book for me.
Slow Pacing: This book took forever to read compared to the rest of the Iron Fey series. It took forever to get to the end of the world. The questing got boring to me, kind of like in Deathly Hallows with all the time spent traveling in the tent with no clear plan or destination. I really began to notice Kagawa's lengthy descriptions and overdone prose.
The Reappearance of Ariella: I didn't buy this at all. She died. In front of Ash and Puck. There were not any hints throughout the entire series that she could possibly be alive. While at first I thought it was a fun added conflict for Ash, now that I've digested the books, I think this was a bit of a cheap trick. I just would have appreciated more foreshadowing that Ariella was someone capable of rising from the dead.
Lack of Voice: I was eager to get Ash's point-of-view in this novel, but I felt like his voice was not recognizably different from Meghan's. I was expecting a distinct difference, especially considering he's fey and from a totally different background. As well as from royalty. And male. I think there was likely a lot of pressure on Kagawa to get this book out (and I remember reading that this book was written for Ash fans), but I wish she'd spent a little extra time on Ash's voice because I think that would have made this a better book.
Overall Rating: I'd give this book three stars. If you want more of Ash sacrificing everything for the girl he loves and a lovely happy ending, you should definitely check this book out.