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Ironside Paperback – 6 Aug 2007
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When pixie Kaye declares herself to Roiben on the day of his coronation, he is forced to send her on a seemingly impossible quest. Now Kaye is forbidden to see or speak to him 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 makes a rash decision to reveal the truth to her mother - that she is a changeling left in place of a human child. Her mother's shock reaction sends Kaye running back to the Faerie realm in search of her human counterpart in a bid to return her to Ironside. But Kaye once again finds herself a pawn in the games of the Seelie Court. Queen Silarial wants Roiben's throne and she will use any means necessary to get it! In this twisted game of wits and power can a pixie outplay a queen?
About the Author
Holly Black spent her early years in a decaying Victorian mansion where her mother fed her a steady diet of ghost stories and faerie tales. An avid collector of rare folklore volumes, spooky dolls, and crazy hats, she lives in West Long Branch, New Jersey, with her husband, Theo. Together with illustrator Tony DiTerlizzi, she is the creator of the bestselling Spiderwick Chronicles series of children's books. For more information, visit www.blackholly.com.
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Corny and Kaye have met up with Luis and his brother Dave who is addicted to a Fairy drug called 'Never'. Luis can also remove curses and charms from humans which is just as well because Adair has cursed Corny.
Silarial is now Queen of the Seelie Court and is a nasty piece of work.
Holly Black never fails to write a good book about the Sidhe and how capricious, spiteful and malignant they can be.
Highly recommended for lovers of this genre.
Things have been uneasy ever since Roiben assumed the throne of the Unseelie Court, and with the threat of war in the air and Roiben's coronation drawing near, everyone is on edge. Changeling Kaye Fierch knows that she loves Roiben, but she feels increasingly unwelcome and out of place in the Unseelie Court. So the night of the coronation, determined to prove herself to Roiben and the rest of the court, she makes a formal declaration and pledges herself to him as his consort. However, faerie custom demands that a quest be undertaken before anyone can sit as the Lord's consort, and Roiben grants Kaye an impossible task: to find a fairy who can tell an untruth. Now she is forbidden from seeing or speaking to him until she completes something she knows cannot be done.
Kaye doesn't know where to go, because she has been feeling uncomfortable at home as well, knowing that she stole a human child's life. In a moment of desperation, she tells her mother the truth: that she is a changeling that was switched with Ellen's real daughter, the real Kaye, and she vows to retrieve her from the Seelie Court and return her to Ellen. She feels that this, at least, is something she can do, even if there's no way she can complete Roiben's quest.
But with all the tension between the courts there is nowhere safe, and in venturing into the Seelie Court to find her human counterpart, Kaye puts herself within reach of Lady Silarial. Silarial wants Roiben's throne, and she's willing to do anything, including using Kaye, to get it. Once again Kaye finds herself in the middle of Faerie politics, but this time Roiben's not there to save her, and she may not have a way out.
In my personal experience it is rare that a sequel ever lives up to the first book, but IRONSIDE does just that. Full of court rivalry, deception and betrayal, sword fights and murder, faerie curses, new romances, and even characters from VALIANT, IRONSIDE is another wonderful foray into the dark, gritty world of Faerie and will not leave readers disappointed. It will make you laugh, it will make you cry, it will make you pound your pillow in frustration and clap your hands in delight. My one and only complaint is that this is the last book set in this amazing world.
Reviewed by: Andie Z.
During Roiben's coronation, Kaye makes the rash decision to declare herself to him, in front of the whole court. Tradition forces Roiben to accept this declaration by handing Kaye a quest. But the one he chooses, to find a faery who can tell an untruth, is an impossible feat, for such a faery does not exist. Kaye sees this quest as an act of betrayal by Roiben, suggesting that he set her such a task precisely because it was unachievable. Not able to see Roiben until she has fulfilled her quest, Kaye feels rejected. It is perhaps this rejection that makes her decide to tell her mother the truth - that she is really a pixie who was exchanged with a human child and left in her place. Feeling as though she does not belong in either the world of faerie, or the mortal world, Kaye enters back into the realm of faerie in order to find the human girl she was swapped with, so that she can be reunited with her mother.
But the faeries of Kaye's world rarely play fair, so it is not long before Kaye realises that, yet again, she is being played like a pawn in a battle between the faerie courts.
Although I did enjoy IRONSIDE, I did not find it as exciting as TITHE, hence only 4 stars for the rating. Personally, I felt that the pace of the book died down during the middle part, almost to the point that it became a chore to plod through. Perseverance paid off, however, and the pace picked up again towards the end. Because there were also characters from the second book, VALIANT, by the end of IRONSIDE you felt as though you had gotten complete closure of all the characters. As the end book in a trilogy, IRONSIDE has certainly done a very good job.
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