Tuesday, August 30, 2011
A Modern Faery’s Tale
In the realm of Faerie, the time has come for Roiben's coronation. Uneasy in the midst of the malevolent Unseelie Court, pixie Kaye is sure of only one thing -- her love for Roiben. But when Kaye, drunk on faerie wine, declares herself to Roiben, he sends her on a seemingly impossible quest. Now Kaye can't see or speak to Roiben unless she can find the one thing she knows doesn't exist: a faerie who can tell a lie.
Miserable and convinced she belongs nowhere, Kaye decides to tell her mother the truth -- that she is a changeling left in place of the human daughter stolen long ago. Her mother's shock and horror sends Kaye back to the world of Faerie to find her human counterpart and return her to Ironside. But once back in the faerie courts, Kaye finds herself a pawn in the games of Silarial, queen of the Seelie Court. Silarial wants Roiben's throne, and she will use Kaye, and any means necessary, to get it. In this game of wits and weapons, can a pixie outplay a queen?
Holly Black spins a seductive tale at once achingly real and chillingly enchanted, set in a dangerous world where pleasure mingles with pain and nothing is exactly as it appears.
Ironside is the conclusion to Holly Black’s Faery trilogy and direct sequel to Tithe. It brings together Kaye, Roiben, and Corny from Tithe and Luis from Valiant. Roiben finds himself leading the Unseelie Court. And his love, Kaye, is in danger. To keep her safe, he gives her an impossible quest. As all fans of faery fiction know, faeries can’t lie. Her quest is to find a faery who can lie.
Along the way, Kaye ends up telling her mother who she really is. A faery changeling. Resulting in yet another quest… to find her mother’s real daughter who has been hidden in faery all these years. This leads her back into the dangerous world of Faerie, as she becomes a pawn of the Seelie queen.
Ironside, named for the faery's term for our world, is even more exciting than Tithe and Valiant, with even more twists and turns. When I finished this one, I dubbed it my favorite of the three. But, later, I adjusted that, placing it in second place (just under Valiant). But, regardless, it’s an excellent conclusion to an excellent trilogy, and I highly recommend all three of them. As well as anything and everything else written by Holly Black.