In the real world, when you vanish into thin air for a week, people tend to notice. After his unexpected journey into the lands of the fey, Ethan Chase just wants to get back to normal. Well, as "normal" as you can be when you see faeries every day of your life. Suddenly the former loner with the bad reputation has someone to try for-his girlfriend, Kenzie. Never mind that he's forbidden to see her again. But when your name is Ethan Chase and your sister is one of the most powerful faeries in the Nevernever, "normal" simply isn't to be. For Ethan's nephew, Keirran, is missing, and may be on the verge of doing something unthinkable in the name of saving his own love. Something that will fracture the human and faery worlds forever, and give rise to the dangerous fey known as the Forgotten. As Ethan's and Keirran's fates entwine and Keirran slips further into darkness, Ethan's next choice may decide the fate of them all.
After his last jaunt into Fairy, Ethan Chase wants absolutely nothing more to do with the fey. He just wants to spend his time with his new girlfriend, Kenzie and try and pretend the other world doesn't exist. But when his nephew, Prince of the Iron Realm, Keirran goes missing, he finds himself dragged back into the thick of things with the fey. Somehow it became up to him and Kenzie to stop Keirran from the unthinkable when it comes to his methods of saving his love. If they fail, Keirran could cause a war that won't only effect the fey realms, but spill over into the human one as well.
I could literally spend this entire review talking about how much I loathe Keirran. I wasn't his biggest fan in the previous installment, but in THE IRON TRAITOR he hit an all time low in my book. Sure his actions are supposed to be about sacrificing everything for love, but it sparked more of selfishness in my opinion. As much as I hate to say it, I feel like his parents, Ash and Megan set a really bad example for him. Their love was forbidden, but they found a way, so of course now Keirran won't let anything stand in his way. The big difference however was that Ash and Megan did not set out to ruin anyone else in their determination to be together. Sure, you could argue in the long run that they did hurt others as their being together allowed Keirran, the catalyst to be born into the world, but they didn't set out that way. Keirran several times throughout the book turns cold and forbidding. I honestly do not understand why any of them stuck with him, especially Annwyl. But I'll get into the rest of the characters later. I know I've read books with characters that are much worse than Keirran, but there is just something about him that infuriates me. Don't get me wrong, I love Julie's writing, but I'll be honest that there were a few times while reading this book that I had to force myself to continue on because I was so angry with him. But then again, that right there might actually be a testament to her skill at crafting a character that elicits such a strong response.
As far as the rest of the characters, Annwyl just struck me as weak, honestly when she only put up token complaints whenever Kierren was off doing something horrible in search of saving her. But I tried to mostly overlook that as I can't imagine what it would be like to be fading like she was. But then again, Kenzie wasn't doing so hot either, and who knows how much longer she will have herself, yet she doesn't allow or expect anyone else to save her. Speaking of Kenzie, I absolutely adore her. She's so strong and amazing, and I just love how she and Ethan are together. She softens him without making him into a wimp. And Ethan, while I adore him, well he needed a bit of softening. Sure, his life has been anything but easy, but he really needed someone to get his head out of his butt to show him being angry and standoffish to the world was not the solution, and Kenzie was that person. They definitely have a swoon worthy romance, only stepping this book up yet another notch.
From what I understand, this series is supposed to be a trilogy, but I'll be honest that I'm not really sure how everything could possibly be wrapped up in just one more book. Sure there was a little forward momentum with the prophecy surrounding Ethan and Kierren, but I still feel like there's a long way to go yet, especially with the way things ended in this book. Talk about a brutal cliffhanger! But I guess that just means that trilogy or not, the next book will be one heck of a ride. Once again, Julie Kagawa has pulled off one heck of an amazing book with THE IRON TRAITOR. Take my word for it, this book is one heck of a read that will suck you in right from the start and not let go.
(Receieved a copy from the publisher via Edelweiss)