Julie Kagawa
The Iron Knight
Iron Fey, Book #4

Review brought to you by OBS Staff member Annabell

Note: Some spoilers!

Synopsis: Ash, former prince of the Winter Court, gave up everything. His title, his home, even his vow of loyalty. All for a girl… and all for nothing.

Unless he can earn a soul.

To cold, emotionless faery prince Ash, love was a weakness for mortals and fools. His own love had died a horrible death, killing any gentler feelings the Winter prince might have had. Or so he thought.

Then Meghan Chase—a half human, half fey slip of a girl— smashed through his barricades, binding him to her irrevocably with his oath to be her knight. And when all of Faery nearly fell to the Iron fey, she severed their bond to save his life. Meghan is now the Iron Queen, ruler of a realm where no Winter or Summer fey can survive.

With the (unwelcome) company of his archrival, Summer Court prankster, Puck, and the infuriating cait sith Grimalkin, Ash begins a journey he is bound to see through to its end— a quest to find a way to honor his solemn vow to stand by Meghan’s side.

To survive in the Iron realm, Ash must have a soul and a mortal body. But the tests he must face to earn these things are impossible. At least, no one has ever passed to tell the tale.

And then Ash learns something that changes everything. A truth that turns reality upside down, challenges his darkest beliefs and shows him that, sometimes, it takes more than courage to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Review: The Iron Knight is the final installment in the Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa. I have read each of the previous novels and was not an extreme fan as so many others have become. I thoroughly enjoyed Ash and Puck. Grim was by far my favorite character throughout each of the novels but Meghan, the so called heroine, was so much of a moron until Iron Queen, I had spent more time imagining slapping her than caring about what happened to her. Iron Knight though is my favorite novel out of the series.

Ash sets out to find Grim who is the only one who can find the Seer. The Seer is the only one who can direct Ash in how to gain a human soul so Ash may keep his vow to Meghan and reunite with her. Puck tags along for the adventure, much to Ash’s annoyance and they happen upon an unexpected alley in the Big Bad Wolf along the way. But even more surprising, is the SHOCKING twist of who the Seer really is and the part the Seer plays in Ash’s life as well as his quest to find a human soul.

The Iron Knight is told from Ash’s perspective and is filled with back to back action from beginning to end. In so many ways, the final installment can be considered as a “guys” book but as a big lover of action, I enjoyed the battles throughout the novel. Puck continues to throw in his comical quips and I had a lot of fun with Ash and Puck’s constant banter.

The story delves in deeper into Ash’s past and his thoughts about his regrets and his mistakes. Ash’s character is completely exposed and his soul bared. For the fans of Team Ash, you will see him as you’ve never really seen him before in the previous novels: completely vulnerable, frustratingly indecisive, and at certain times broken. I had enjoyed reading Ash’s journey from a cold, numb Prince of the Unseelie Court to being transformed by love. Out of all the characters, his was the best developed in depth.

Puck is also shown more in depth in the final installment. His feud with Ash finally comes to a head when they venture into the Seer’s territory. You see Puck as vulnerable as you will ever see him and as heart broken. He has always loved Ash as his best friend and brother even though they are from different sides. So much of what happened between him and Ash is revealed and the readers are thrown into their pain, grief, regret, and ultimately love the two have for each other underneath it all. But don’t worry, Puck is still mischievous, sarcastic, and determined to amusingly annoy those around him the way only Puck can do.

Meghan once again is useless in the novel but thankfully, she barely makes an appearance, something I appreciated very much! Grim is still as rude, blunt, and sneaky as he has always been. I love that darn cat! The Big Bad Wolf was a great added character. He was terrifying, fierce, and hilarious with his war with Grim.

There were only a few problems with the novel. So much of the span of the novel is spent with Ash, Puck, Grim, the Big Bad Wolf, and the Seer journeying to The End of the World so Ash can gain a soul. It drags out too much causing some of the scenes between the characters to read very flat, including some of Puck’s quips. There are alot of scenes that were basically useless to the progression of the story. There were many pages I skimmed through because there was no real need to read them. As much as the twist with who the Seer really is, it became a bit much when Ash becomes so indecisive as to whether he should be with Meghan based on what he learns. The indecision was dragged out beyond what was necessary and caused the story to feel far too heavy with melancholy.

The Gauntlet Ash has to face at The End of the World before he can get to the Guardian was one of the best action packed parts. The trials that the Guardian gives Ash to face to prove whether or not he deserves a soul, were somewhat anticlimactic. There were a good amount of scenes that could have been condescend or even taken out and the story would not have suffered without them. The decision the Seer makes closer toward the end was predictable and too dramatic for my tastes. I actually was happy with the decision the Seer made because the character was completely irritating. The Seer was more of a nuisance than actual help, getting into trouble often and needing rescuing.

The ending was nicely wrapped and will leave fans wonderfully satisfied.

Outside of the flaws, The Iron Knight is without a doubt the best of the four novels within the Iron Fey Series. Filled with insane action, delightful humor, fierce and comedic casts of misfits, and the aged ole’ story of love conquering even death-The Iron Knight proves it’s a novel worth reading.