October 29, 2013

REVIEW: The Iron Traitor (The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten #2)

The Iron Traitor (The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten #2), by Julie Kagawa
Published October 29, 2013
e-galley obtained from NetGalley
YA fantasy/paranormal
To Buy: 
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Rating:  5 STARS

(From Goodreads) In the real world, when you vanish into thin air for a week, people tend to notice.

After his unexpected journey into the lands of the fey, Ethan Chase just wants to get back to normal. Well, as "normal" as you can be when you see faeries every day of your life. Suddenly the former loner with the bad reputation has someone to try for-his girlfriend, Kenzie. Never mind that he's forbidden to see her again.

But when your name is Ethan Chase and your sister is one of the most powerful faeries in the Nevernever, "normal" simply isn't to be. For Ethan's nephew, Keirran, is missing, and may be on the verge of doing something unthinkable in the name of saving his own love. Something that will fracture the human and faery worlds forever, and give rise to the dangerous fey known as the Forgotten. As Ethan's and Keirran's fates entwine and Keirran slips further into darkness, Ethan's next choice may decide the fate of them all.

I have to tell you - while I was reading The Iron Traitor, I was an all over the place, emo mess. There was some of this:

 ...followed by some of this (like, when Ash showed up):

...and then I was all:

...and then finally:

Seriously. Just like that. 

So, Ethan is thrust right back in the middle of where he didn't want to be when Annwyl and Meghan come to him at different times to tell him that Kierran, the Iron Prince and Ethan's nephew, is missing. Ethan and Kenzie set off on a trip through the mortal world, the Nevernever and the Between in order to find Kierran and then to help him, sometimes reluctantly and with great consequence, on his mission to save the person he loves. Unfortunately, the price for this help may be higher than Ethan was willing to pay.

I could just wrap up all my silly gifs in one word - AWESOME. The Iron Traitor was a mind-blowing, heart-stopping trip to crazy town, and I loved every single minute. Ethan has come a long way since the beginning of The Iron Prince (The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten #1). In it, his anger and disappointment at his sister was infecting every facet of his life. He turned his back on his Sight. He shunned all attempts others made at trying to be friends. He really wasn't a very likable guy. 

In The Iron Traitor, Ethan is shedding his nasty exterior - albeit, slowly - and coming to terms with who he is and who his family is. A lot of that has to do with Kenzie's influence. She's the girl who didn't take any of his crap, and he fell in love with her because of it. She pushes him beyond what he thought he was capable of. Kenzie is the bomb. 

And then there's Kierran. Kierran, Kierran, Kierran. I think he smiled 0.75 times in the entire book. There's several reasons for this - the woman he loves is dying, he's slightly estranged from his parents, and he essentially made a deal with the devil. He had good reasons for making very bad decisions. But, my heart hurt so much for this kid for the entire book.

As in The Iron Prince, we catch glimpses of our very favorite friends from The Iron Fey. We see Meghan, Ash, Puck and Grim, but all the appearances are sadly too short. Puck hangs around the longest while helping Ethan, Kierran and Kenzie out on the final leg of their mission. Sadly, Ash is the one we see the least of. But, when he does show up, you totally take notice.

I love Ethan and Kenzie together. They have a unique relationship. Ethan's always pretending to be uber tough and Kenzie tries to make it seem as if everything happening to her just rolls off her back. Both of them are crazy which is why they're so perfect together. Their moments of sweetness and vulnerability gave me a much needed break from the extreme angst. 

Can I just say a word about the ending? This about sums it up:

The cliffhanger is totally off. The. Hook. I know why Julie Kagawa did it. It really was the perfect ending. That doesn't mean it made me feel happy. Waiting for the resolution is going to be painful. In a wonderfully, bookish way.

The Iron Traitor is everything I love in an epic book. It has love and death, big battles, creatures of all shapes and sizes, old friends and new enemies. How can you say no to all that?

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