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Iron Night by M.L. Brennan

Iron Night

by M.L. Brennan

Other authors: Robin Catalano (Copy editor)

Series: Generation V (2)

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568210,933 (4.21)2



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Now that Fort Scott is closer than ever to making his transition to full vampire status, he is training with his brother, Chivalry both physically and for helping with the family business (running most of the north eastern United States). When he finds his roommate dead and mutilated, Fort is drawn into the world of elves. Not cute Keebler elves either. These elves are conducting experiments and for that they need blood sacrifices. With the help of his kitsune pal, Suzume, his scary sister, Prudence, and a pretty half elf, he takes on solving the mystery and ending the killing.

This series is just so good. Fort is torn between his human side and his growing vampire powers and responsibilities. He is also struggling with his attraction to Suzume, because he knows it has no future. In this book we learn more about his family, particularly his mother's plans for him. I am checking out the next one right now. Can't wait to see what happens. ( )
  TheLibraryhag | May 14, 2015 |
So good!! I need next book ASAP. ( )
  BookaholicCat | Mar 4, 2015 |
"Overall, the American Vampire series is shaping up to be one of those that holds an eye-level spot on my shelves, and one I certainly pull out when I’m proving to skeptical friends that urban fantasy isn’t all sparkling vampires and sexy werewolves. IRON NIGHT was a wonderful trip through a continuously creative universe that I plan on visiting again."

See my full review at All Things Urban Fantasy. ( )
  kateminasian | Nov 22, 2014 |
As a unique new voice in urban fantasy, M.L. Brennan impressed me in 2013 with Generation V and her revitalization of the much used vampire trope. Bringing us as readers a still familiar yet very distinct vampire lore, she created in Fortitude Scott, a character worthy of sympathy that many of us could also empathize with. Admittedly, I found myself still thinning about him and Suzume even months after reading it, so much so that fondness for the characters grew add the months past in anticipation of the second novel.

So I was not surprised that I was blown away with how much I loved Iron Night. Again we meet different fantasy species that any fantasy reader has seen before, but they have been reimagined in ways that made then feel fresh and new. I particularly loved her treatment of the elves and half breeds. Fort is learning a lot about the family business the post few months and this also makes for the perfect opportunity to introduce new species into the series without it being overwhelming. The method by which it was done was perfect.

I loved that we got to see Fort and Suzume team up again where Fort wasn’t as big of a weakling. He still has a long way to go to being a real vampire but he isn’t the pushover getting mugged by teenagers that he once was either. Though he is still quite as clueless as ever, men right, when aren’t they?

There are quite the handful of elements taking place in Iron Night that I wasn’t bytes for a second. Indeed, I could have been happily strung along with a whole lot more and been ecstatic. I felt like every scene flowed quickly and seamlessly into the next with no stutters of boredom or desire from me to skin over anything. M.L. Brennan has an amazing sense of humor that I have immediately connected with that it shines through the entire book without taking anything away from the gravity of those sometimes oh so serious moments.

Vampires, trolls, elves, witches, foxes and ghouls. Just put down whatever other urban fantasy you were about to read and pick up Generation V and Iron Night instead. You can thank me later. ( )
  Pabkins | May 2, 2014 |
Having accepted the reality that he is part of the vampire world, Fortitude Scott has made some significant changes to his life. He is now working out seriously several times a week with his older brother, feeding more frequently from his mother, has even found himself a new job and shocker of shockers, a roommate who actually pays his half of the rent on time. Finally, Fortitude has achieved the stability he has longed for but unfortunately for Fort, it's short lived. When he awakes one morning to find his roommate Gage drained of blood, missing body parts and dead, Fort is determined to get justice for him and not allow his powerful mother to sweep Gage's death under the carpet. Fort's investigation brings him closer to crafty kitsune Suzume Hollis, as together they race against time to discover why bodies are starting to pile up. If that were not enough, Matt, the one human Fort has loved since childhood is starting to get suspicious. Can Fort get justice for Gage, while keeping Matt in the dark, in order to save his life?

In Iron Night, Brennan enlarges the world and we learn about the necessity of vampires as apex predators to police their territory. We get a very strong sense of the hierarchy amongst the supernaturals and how delicate the balance of power is with humanity. As Fort's vampire nature continues to mature, he begins to change. Now Fort makes the necessary decisions to accomplish his ends no matter how difficult. He doesn't want to be like his sociopath sister Prudence but at the same time, he is highly aware that he cannot allow people to fun roughshod over him anymore.

American Vampire is one of the few series with a male protagonist but the women in Iron Night play exceptionally strong roles. Suzume continues to delight me with her trickster nature and I love that Fort is continually left off balance by her antics. Though Fort is supposedly in charge of the mission, Suzume is not a side kick who follows blindly; she is an equal partner. Suzume is not only highly intelligent, physically she is clearly more capable than Fortitude. This naturally subverts gender roles and Brennan manages this while allowing Suzume to remain feminine. Madeline, Fort's mother though clearly on the decline, rules with an iron fist. Prudence plays the role of Fort's enforcer and while there is no doubt she is a sociopath, her relationship with Fort is extremely complex.

The only issue I have in terms of gender is the treatment of Beth. In Generation V, Beth was the woman who cheated on Fortitude. In reality, she read more like a polyamorous character than a scarlet woman; however, she was treated like the latter. Beth faced the ultimate punishment and was skinned alive as a lesson to Fortitude. Once Beth was dead, she was suddenly described with reverence and at times even romanticized. It took death to redeem Beth and that is highly problematic, given that women have historically been subjected to violence for supposed sexual misdeeds. This situation is made worse in that Beth then becomes a mission of retribution for Fort.

One of things I continue to enjoy about this series is Brennan's portrayal of class. Fort is at best working class and as such, he continues to have everyday struggles to survive. He takes the bus to save on parking and his beloved car is practically held together by chewing gum. Fort buys the cheapest booze he can afford and when he does want to treat himself to something new, it means cancelling his Netflix account and living on Ramen noodles for months at a time. These privations are worth it to Fort because it means he gets to retain his independence. This line is important because it helps support Fort's character as a young man struggling to survive on his in terms.

Not only is this series magically diverse, it's also racially diverse. Brennan continues to take great care with the character of Suzume. I have come to trust Brennan's writing and no longer fear that this great character will be reduced to the all to common trope of lotus flower or dragon lady, as often happens with Asian women in media. In Iron Night, Brennan built on Suzume's character and took care to include cultural groundings, which not only solidify her as a kitsune but as an Asian woman. Suzume is no card board cut out.

Read More ( )
  FangsfortheFantasy | Mar 9, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
M.L. Brennanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Catalano, RobinCopy editorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451418417, Mass Market Paperback)

Underemployed by day. Undead by night.
Underachieving film theory graduate and vampire Fortitude Scott may be waiting tables at a snooty restaurant run by a tyrannical chef who hates him, but the other parts of his life finally seem to be stabilizing. He's learning how to rule the Scott family territory, hanging out more with his shapeshifting friend Suzume Hollis, and has actually found a decent roommate for once.

Until he finds his roommate’s dead body.

The Scott family cover-up machine swings into gear, but Fort is the only person trying to figure out who (or what) actually killed his friend. His hunt for a murderer leads to a creature that scares even his sociopathic family, and puts them all in deadly peril. 

Keeping secrets, killing monsters, and still having to make it to work on time? Sometimes being a vampire really sucks.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:50 -0400)

Underachieving film theory graduate and vampire Fortitude Scott may be waiting tables at a snooty restaurant run by a tyrannical chef who hates him, but the other parts of his life finally seem to be stabilizing. He's learning how to rule the Scott family territory, hanging out more with his shapeshifting friend Suzume Hollis, and has actually found a decent roommate for once.… (more)

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