You’d think a book that had aspects of the magic of Labyrinth
, the cool creepiness of The Dark Crystal
, the otherworldness of Alice in Wonderland
, and the medieval fantasy of Willow
would be good, right? Wrong. In fact The Iron King
is a rather tedious and boring read.
It reads like a pastoral novel: The hero—in this case, a heroine named Meghan—and her Sancho Panzas—Ash, Grimalkin, and Robin Goodfellow—get into various scrapes on their journey to rescue Meghan’s half-brother, Ethan. Now in other pastoral novels, for instance Fielding’s Joseph Andrews
, this series of unfortunate events could seem dull if the story wasn’t aided by having funny likable characters. And that’s exactly what The Iron King
lacks. The characters are two-dimensional and aren’t well defined. Meghan’s not very endearing or profound; she’s just an ordinary whiney impulsive teenager. For example, during the aftermath of the climax, as she witnesses all the destruction around her, Meghan mutters, “Wow!”…. Oh boy! I couldn’t help but say wow too! ;)
Megan's character is never developed; she never expresses herself; and there's no chemistry between her and Ash, only a sort of lust. As a reader, I couldn’t quite grasp the reason why Ash likes her. At first glance, Ash is rather aloof. Then we learn about his lost love—a scene I swear comes from Du Maurier’s The King’s General
. And then all of a sudden, there’s a kiss and Ash turns into a lovesick puppy. But I have to give him some credit for his fight scenes at the end—he was like the Energizer bunny that keeps going and going.
I think the characters I liked the best were the pack rats, which is funny because they had no dialogue.
The story’s plot is also rather predictable. Even though it’s never confirmed at the story’s end, I have a gut feeling that the Iron King or Ferrus is Meghan’s long lost human father, though she can no longer remember him, since her memories were taken away as part of her agreement with the Oracle. However, I don’t think I’ll read the rest of this 6 book series to find out. It’s not really worth it. In my opinion, there are better faery stories out there. If you want to read more about Oberon, Titiana, Mab and Robin Goodfellow, try Lesley Livingston’s [b:Wondrous Strange|3064985|Wondrous Strange (Wondrous Strange, #1)|Lesley Livingston|http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51nDO7PStTL._SL75_.jpg|3095990] trilogy.