Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Ironskin by Tina Connolly

Title: Ironskin
Author: Tina Connolly
Publisher: Tor Books; First Edition edition (October 2, 2012)
Length: 304
Format: hardcover

Description from book:
Jane Eliot wears an iron mask.

It's the only way to contain the fey curse that scars her cheek. The Great War is five years gone, but its scattered victims remain—the ironskin.

When a carefully worded listing appears for a governess to assist with a “delicate situation”—a child born during the Great War—Jane is certain the child is fey-cursed, and that she can help.

Teaching the unruly Dorie to suppress her curse is hard enough; she certainly didn't expect to fall for the girl's father, the enigmatic artist Edward Rochart. But her blossoming crush is stifled by her scars and by his parade of women. Ugly women, who enter his closed studio...and come out as beautiful as the fey.

Jane knows Rochart cannot love her, just as she knows that she must wear iron for the rest of her life. But what if neither of these things are true? Step by step Jane unlocks the secrets of a new life—and discovers just how far she will go to become whole again.

My Thoughts:
      There are a lot of covers out there today that have the girl in the pretty dress theme, but Ironskin just has something extra. There is a mystery on the front cover and I had to pick it up for looks alone. Jane is a commendable heroine. She is trying to help poor Dorie who "suffers" from a fey malady like she does. Having experienced pain, ostracism, stares, and rejection; she hopes to save Dorie from a similar fate. Jane is a girl who deeply cares about the troubles of others despite her fey curse being that of rage. She constantly has others' best interests at heart and toward the end of the book displays real back bone in the face of her worst nightmares. Dorie was one of, if not my favorite character in the entire story. There was just something about her. She was innocent, willful, independent, and adorable in a strange and endearing way. Then there was Mr. Rochart whom did nothing for me. He was somewhat likeable in the beginning, but everything went downhill from there. I don't want to give too much away, but Jane could do better.
      The storyline was a very interesting one. There was the dynamic of Jane helping Dorie, Jane's relationship with Rochart, and her past and the subsequent hatred for all things fey. Her and Dorie's relationship was beautiful and heartbreaking all at the same time. It was simple to understand, yet complicated in action. However, when she interacted with Rochart and things of fey nature or the fey wars I got a little confused. There was so much that should have been explained in detail. The premise behind the fey and their interactions with the human society was extremely unique, but unfortunately was not explored in this book. Due to this fact parts of the book seemed to "wander" and didn't flow cohesively. The inevitable showdown at the end of the book was somewhat rushed and anti-climatic. I didn't quite see the ending going down like that. In the end I admired Jane even more, but one main character in particular (?) could have died and I would have been fine. In the end this beautifully covered book was just ok. The potential to wow readers with a whole new world just didn't live up to my expectations. I give this book a 3 STAR rating.

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