Thursday, November 03, 2011

The Iron King

Title: The Iron King (Iron Fey Series, #1)
Author: Julie Kagawa
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
ISBN: 9781426847806 (EPub edition)
Pages: 280 pages
First Published: 2010

Actually, my first impression when I read half of this book was "oh, okay, there's nothing special there", girl unpoppular, girl has guardian/protector, girl turns sixteen, girl has hidden power, girl goes to somewheresomewhere, girl meets whatever, girl finds out the truth, then girl has to fight something (change girl to boy, and sixteen to eleven, and dare say you don't know what I mean!) We all read one too many of these kind of stories. But that was not the point. The point was, that I couldn't stop reading it. Maybe it was because of the Shakespearean tiding, or the childhood memories of fairy-tales, or school-girls' dream of prince charming or maybe it just because of the well-written quick-paced and detailed wonders of the journey that keep me turning pages.

Meghan Chase
This is the girl I've been talking about. She's just about to turn sixteen when all the frenzy things come to sight. Her brother was kidnapped and replaced by fairy and got to go to Nevernever to get him back. Later, she found out that she was King Oberon's daughter.

Robin Goodfellow / Puck
As Robbie in mortal land, he was Meghan best friend and alway called her princess. As Puck in Nevernever, he was King Oberon's Jesters signed to protect his daughter with one particular task, never to let her know anything about the fairyland. He choose to fail this task when Meghan's little brother was kidnapped and Meghan beg to took him back. He faced his King wrath and doomed to be a caged raven until Meghan decided to rescue his brother alone in the unseely court and forced the King to set him free to protect her once again. He goes with Meghan through high and low until severely injured, unconcious and had to be taken care by the tree dryad. Totally unharmful prankster, except for one time he goes too far that made Prince Ash sworn to kill him.

His Majesty King Oberon, Lord of the Summer Court, Ruler of the Seely Ground
Yeah..yeah..yeah... whatever. Knocked up Meghan's mother one day, and then there was Meghan. Don't think to much of him.

A Cait Sith that offer his service to Meghan in return of "small favor". He's knowledgeable and smart, sometimes even slick.

Prince Ash
The youngest of Queen Mab's son. Once even friend to Puck, until a unforgive-able mischief action made him sworn to have his vengeance. He first met Meghan during his chase for Puck but neglets to realize that she was the half-human his Queen wanted. Later he made a contract with her, that she would come with him willingly to the Winter Court, after he accompany her to find her brother and bring him saved home. But then, strange thing happened, you know, like crazy little thing called loved. Classic.

Her Majesty Queen Mab, Lord of the Winter Court, Ruler of the Unseely Ground
Want Meghan for unknown reason (yet). First suspicion would be to pressed her opponent, King Oberon. But maybe, she knows something more. Maybe she would turn Meghan into a secret weapon or something.

"My name is Ferrum. As you no doubt noticed, I am old. Older than all of the iron fey. I was the first, born of the forges, when mankind first began to experiment with iron. I rose from their imagination, from their ambition to conquer the world with a metal that could slice through bronze like paper. I was there when the world started to shift, when humans took their first steps out of the Dark Ages into civilization. For many years, I thought I was alone. But mankind is never satisfied. Others came, risen from these dreams of a new world. They accepted me as their king, and for centuries, we remained hidden, isolated from the rest of the fey. I realized, beyond a doubt, that if the courts knew of our existence, they would unite to destroy us. Then, with the invention of computers, the gremlins came, and the bugs. Given life by the fear of monsters lurking in machines, these were more chaotic than the other fey, violent and destructive. They spread to every part of the world. As technology became a driving force in every country, powerful new fey rose into existence. Virus. Glitch. And Machina, the most powerful of all."
Yeah..., and his not the Iron King (anymore). I just put it here, because I like his monoloque. :D

I was intrique by the idea of turning Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream into another fantasy story. I had to admitted, that I like Puck since the first time I read it (oh common' the way he keep switching the love poison, it's amusing!! Not to mention Gaiman own twisted story of him ;p ) But King Oberon and Queen Titania... well, not so much.

Queen Mab on the other hand, was interesting. I knew her not from Shakespeare but more in post-mo spirit, a TV series titled Merlin, ring a bell? Here's her picture, quite similar to the book description too.... I think she will play a greater deal in the second book.

Grimalkin was okay, I guess, seen him everywhere, from Alice's Cheshire to Eragon's Solembum. I LOVED when he's sarcasticly said "I am a cat!" :D

Another thing that I think was very fresh idea in a fantasy story, was the introduction of a new kind of fairy, the iron fey, a magical creatures molded by the dream (or nightmare) of mortal's advanced technology. Like Ferrum said, mankind never satisfied, we always dream of a new world. So, if yesterday children dream about snow white and red riding hood, trolls and pirates, flying trunks and flying carpets, todays children might reach out for internet's games, psp and wii, the villain shifted from hungry wolves and evil step mother into software glitches, bugs and computer viruses. But in the end, no matter how or by whom, we all still believed, that dragon -either flesh or metal or binary- could be slayed.

So, by and by, I have no doubt that I would read this series till the end (4 main and 2 addition, glad, they all been released). And along the way, I'll say I really enjoy reading them.


Pengin baca versi terjemahan bahasa Indonesianya negh, tapi kok udah nyari2 kok belum dapet juga ya.... Duh!

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