Target Audience: Teens/Young Adults
***Contains Quite A Few Spoilers***
I honestly can't find any fault with this book, which has to a be a rare occurence for me, i usually manage to pick on something, but i honestly can't!
I'm a big fan of faerie stories and admittedly i like it when one comes along that surprises me by adding an unexpected twist, in this case the Iron Fey are introduced, which i have to admit (despite the title) i didn't quite comprehend exactly who the Iron Fey were until they appeared.
But before i get onto that, i think i'll give a brief description ans summary of the actual plot:
Meghan Chase is a 15, soon to be, 16 year old girl who has never really fit in, and whose only friend is Robbie whose been in her life since forever. After an incident in the computer lab at school, Meghan finds herself humiliated at school and her birthday is then ruined when her four-year-old half-brother Ethan is switched for a changeling.
Determined to bring her brother back, Meghan enters the land of the Nevernever with Robbie in order to bring him back, but things are a lot more complicated than they seem and Meghan has more than one person after her...
Story wise, i found the pace absolutely breathtaking, yet not so insanely fast that i lost track of the events as they unfolded on the pages. Just when i thought i knew where the plot was going, another twist was flung up and i felt surprise at the turns it took so many times that i actually stopped trying to guess what was going to happen next because it was pointless (in a very good way).
Another difference i noticed was the authors ability to merge both science/computing with the Fey, something that i've wondered about for a while. The idea was amazing and in the wrong hands could have been a disaster, but it wasn't (just check out the character named 'Virus', think computers and you'll get the idea!) I loved the idea of human thought influencing the world of the Fey in such a way that you end up with Fey that are Iron/computer orientated, and in such are deadly to the Seelie and Unseelie courts.
For all those romance fans out there, there's the wonderfully complicated relationship between Meghan (the halfling daughter of the Seelie king) and Ash (the son of the unseelie queen), and although star-crossed love has been done countless times, there was something about those two characters that made it different in a beautiful way that i can't quite explain.
When considering the chracters i absolutely loved them all. Meghan was warm, brave and so damn stubborn (but in a good way) i admired her determination to do what she had to do, and her relationships with both Puck and Ash were brilliantly told. Puck was the classic protective best friend, with a rather strange twist to him and Ash was the dark, mysterious, icy prince whose heart begins to thaw as the book progresses.
Oberon and Titania were brilliant in their own way too, and i loved the literary refrences to 'A Midsummers Night Dream'. Although my overall opinion of Oberon is that he can be a selfish jerk at times!
Anyways, to summarise, this is a MUST READ, no doubt about it. Myth, faeries, romance, war and one amazing cliff-hanger ending will have you longing for the next in the series!