Friday 29 July 2011

Book Review - The Iron Witch

Title: The Iron Witch
Author: Karen Mahoney
Series: The Iron Witch Trilogy (book 1)
Publisher: Corgi Childrens
Release Date: 20 Jan 2011
ISBN-13: 978-0552563819


That's what they call seventeen-year-old Donna Underwood at Ironbridge High School. A horrific fey attack that killed her father when she was just a child left Donna branded with iron tattoos that cover her hands and arms - and magically enhanced strength, that she now does all she can to hide.

Now, after ten years of wishing for a normal life, Donna finally accepts her role in the centuries-old war against the darkest outcasts of Faerie - the dark elves. Aided by Xan, a gorgeous half-fey dropout, Donna must save her best friend's life - and that means betraying one of the world's greatest secrets and confronting the very thing that destroyed her family.

My Review
I had seen quite a few posts about this one and thought the cover looked very eye catching and different so I decided to give this one a go. I actually lent it to a friend before I got round to reading it, but she returned it quickly and said she couldn't get into it. I lowered my expectations but thought I would still give it a go.
I read this very quickly, in a couple of hours, but it was mainly because i wanted to get through it. The story starts off quite well paced and draws your attention in. the world is created well and there is an air of mystery.
Donna is branded a freak by her peers, forced to wear gloves that cover her arms up to her elbows, the other kids think she is weird, but she needs to hide the strange markings on her arms - after an attack in the woods when she was seven which resulted in her father's death and her mother losing the plot, Donna got seriously injured and so Iron tattoos were crafted in her skin to heal her, these resulted in super strength and other powers, but also strengthened her connection to the fey world. Surrounded by Alchemists and secrets Donna really just wants a normal life.
Xan is a college drop out, attractive, secretive and something about him draws Donna in. With his own connection to Fey, they work together to solve some mysteries. 
Navin is Donna's best friend, yet he knows nothing about her world or her past, but all that will change. Navin was probably my favourite character, he was different - but even so there were moments when I expected him to react or turn out the hero or something and he would just say 'OK' and walk off.  His best friend reveals all sorts of strange truths and he hardly bats an eye.
I found the concept intriguing and parts were well done, however I'm not sure why, but I was bored at points throughout, I only kept reading because I hate to give up on books. 
As it is part of a trilogy some things may be expanded in the later books, but it seemed like we were told facts/information that had no real use at the time. 
There wasn't a lot of action in the book and Donna felt a bit whiny at times, but I didn't hate the book either. It was an OK, one time read and I think many others would love it, but it just wasn't my cup of tea, I'm not sure I'll read the rest of the series. Just wasn't for me.
I feel a bit conflicted with this book as I felt it had great potential but fell a little bit flat. I would recommend you try it for yourself though.

My Rating
I would give this book 5.5/10 Some good points, but overall disappointing for me.


Alexa said...

Aw I'm sorry you didn't enjoy this one. Thanks for commenting on my July RAK post. Happy Early Birthday to you too! :)

barmybex said...

hehe, no problem.
Thanks :D

Liz. R said...

I didn't really love this one either - I though Donna was pretty boring and I just didn't get into the story. Glad I'm not alone!

kaye (paper reader) said...

This seems to be a common theme for reviews that I've read. I think I'll give it a try, but if I see it at the library.

Lan said...

the cover of this book is just amazing. Love the imagery. Have heard many mixed reviews about this one. Not keen on a whiny heroine but I might pick it up at the library. Thanks for the review Bex.

Marg @ Clockwork Reverie said...

I've actually heard other people mention that this one is a bit on the sluggish side with very little action, so I haven't given it too much consideration.

Too many books I've read lately have been really slow to develop. I have really low attention span when it comes to reading, so a story needs to grab me pretty much right out the gate.

Thanks for the review!

barmybex said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one that didn't like it - I thought I would be covered in comments saying I was mad.

Thanks for commenting everyone.
Yeah Kaye - if you want to read it the library is definitely the best option - good luck with it. :D