Publisher: Harlequin Teen
- Middle book. Okay, I really enjoyed this book, don’t get me wrong, but I do think that it suffered very slightly from Middle Book Syndrome. You all know the signs – things happen in the first half of the book, but not much happens that’s truly important – it’s all kind of leading up to the second half of the book – and the big ending that propels you into book #3. While I definitely loved the book (and I felt like the character building in the first half of the book was definitely necessary), I wasn’t quite blown away by it because I felt myself waiting – waiting for the really good stuff to happen (which it did in the second half!).
- Reminders of book #1. Julie Kagawa is a master of reminding us of everything that has already happened in her series without making it all feel like a boring re-hash. I was immediately reminded of everything important that happened in the last book, which meant that I didn’t have to stumble around trying to remember why this or that part of the plot was important. You could almost read this as a standalone (but you should NOT – definitely go read the first book if you haven’t already!! In fact, read the original Iron Fey series first).
- Ethan. I fell even more in love with Ethan in this book! I loved that he was a bit more approachable in The Iron Traitor, but didn’t completely lose his edge (the scenes with Kenzie’s friends made me laugh). I loved seeing him trying to navigate having a real relationship with Kenzie – something he never thought he’d do. I especially loved how he struggled with his feelings about his family – the feelings of loss that he had because his sister had left them, his conflicted feelings about Keirran, his desire to keep his parents from being hurt further. All of these things made me sympathize with Ethan and kept me firmly on his side throughout the book!
- The other characters. Kagawa gave us more of the characters that we came to know and love in book 1! Kenzie and Ethan’s relationship is still going strong, and we get to see even more of Kenzie’s strong, plucky personality! I loved their relationship – they fought in this book, but the fight was resolved in a realistic way and it didn’t drag on (I hate it when characters I love are in long fights over small issues just to add romantic “tension” to a book). I also felt like we got to know and love Annwyn a lot more in this book – and we got to see some of the history behind her relationship with Keirran, which made it a lot easier to sympathize with him when he was making truly bad decisions in order to save her.
- The ending. If you’re a fan of Kagawa, you know that she likes to end with a bang and she doesn’t disappoint here! My only complaint with the ending is that it doesn’t come as a big surprise since the series has kind of been building up to it, but it still had emotional impact and will leave you desperate to find out what will happen next!