I Declare Myself One of the Few People Who Does Not Love This Series
I finally made it through the third book in the Iron Fey series. For a while there it felt as though I would never make it! Since I had a copy of the ARC, I felt it my duty to read it. That said, here's the review.
The elements of book one that were worthwhile and made me hope for the rest of the series either ceased existing or became incredibly irritating through repetition. A perfect example of the former are the pack rats, who I found delightful in The Iron King. They show up only once in the subsequent books (in this book actually), but they get no lines and are mindlessly doing evil. No mention is made of their fate. Of the latter, Grimalkin is an excellent example. I loved him in the first book, because he's so cat-like and judgmental. Now I hate when he shows up. For one thing, there's the fact that every time he appears/disappears the surrounding characters say the same damn thing. Plus, he never does anything without washing his paw/tail or twitching his tail. He's a cat. I get it!
I also liked that Meghan tried when scary times happened. She sometimes had to be saved, but she also helped others when she could, either with wits or magic. In this book, she trains and gets stronger physically and magically. Despite this, she still relies on Puck and Ash to keep her safe. When she does try to act on her own, Ash returns to his "cold, unreachable Ice Prince" self. Her continued/forced reliance on others to save her despite being one of the most powerful characters is incredibly aggravating!
Another major issue I had with this series was that I shipped Meghan with the wrong guy. I knew it was coming from book one, but I can't help it. I don't like Ash. He's lame and overly controlling (see above). Puck isn't perfect by any means, but he is way more like a real person with a personality than Mr. Grumpy I-want-to-be-a-warrior-with-Darcy/Edward-moping-abilities. (Plus, Puck turns into a crow, which reminds me of Nawat in Trickster's Choice! ) Ash says things like "You are my heart, my life, my entire existence." Seriously? Is this a kind of love I should be envious of and aspire to? Ick. Cheesy to the nth degree.
Writers borrow from other writers. It happens and it's not plagiarism to be inspired, which is why people can write sequels to other people's books. Kagawa is trying to create her own unique fantasy world though, which is why I'm bothered by a character that talks (and sort of acts like) Gollum from The Lord of the Rings. The Gremlin named Razor speaks thusly after Grim (the cat) captures him: "Evil, evil, sneaky kitty! Bite your head off in your sleep, I will! Hang you by your toes and set you one fire! Burn, burn!" Replace 'sneaky kitty' with 'tricksy hobbitses' and you will definitely see what I mean.
On the plus side, there's another book in the series. If there's a midnight release party, I will be there with bells on! Ahem. In all seriousness, if you're interested in this series, do yourself a favor and quit after book one.