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Ironside by Holly Black
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Ironside

by Holly Black

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Modern Tales of Faerie (3)

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Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
Ironside is the third and final book in the Modern Faerie Tales trilogy and it was a pretty good ending. Valiant is still my favorite of the three, however I really did like this book.

Ironside was hard to put down. It didn’t pull me in as much as Valiant, or even Tithe, but I still wanted to keep reading to find out how it all would end. I have to admit though that I was just a tiny bit disappointed in the ending. It just didn’t feel finished.

Holly Black is a fabulous writer. She creates a gripping story filled with friendship and danger. So of course I would definitely recommend this trilogy to everyone. All three books are fast, fun and well written. ( )
  TheTreeReader | Dec 28, 2017 |
It's time for Roiben's coronation to be made the offical king of the depraved Unseelie Court. Kaye, who is just getting used to her pixie state after being raised as a human, is having trouble fitting in to the court. During the celebration, Kaye drinks more faerie wine than she should and drunkenly declares her love for Roiben in fae tradition. It's customary for him to give her some sort of trial, an easy one if the love is returned, and she can't see or speak to him until the task is done. His task is for her to find a faerie who can lie, which is completely impossible. Shocked and reeling, Kaye returns to her home and goes into a shame spiral, resulting in telling her mother that she is a changeling. When trying to retrieve her human counterpart, Silarial, queen of the Seelie Court, attempts to ensare Kaye into her plan to take the Unseelie throne from Roiben. How can Kaye hope to beat the ancient queen of the faeries at her own game?

I seriously love this series so much. I have no idea why I waited so long to read it. It combines so many things that I love: dark faeries, realistic characters, twisty plots, unconventional romances, sword fights, and games of wit. While there is one fairly one dimensional villain, both sides of the conflict are largely in shades of grey where both do good and evil for different reasons. How they appear is not usually how they actually are and it has led to many surprising and turns in the series. This installment also merges the characters from Tithe with those from Valiant, but I felt they were underutilized considering an entie book was spent building up their characters. I especially loved returning to Kaye and Roiben and seeing that the events of Tithe didn't magically make all of their problems go away.

Kaye is still lost as a newfound pixie and Roiben still holds all his feelings inside without sharing all of himself with Kaye. Now that Kaye knows what she is, she no longer truly belongs to the faerie world or the human world. Faeries view her as ignorant, socially inept, and someone to play tricks on, as close to human as a fae can get. She sticks to the human world most of the time because she can at least glamour herself to fit in even though she knows she doesn't belong there anymore. As before, she's prone to drowning her sorrows in booze instead of facing them head-on. This paired with her eagerness to be accepted into fae society as Roiben's mate drove her to declare herself to Roiben.

Roiben also has a lot of baggage. He feels similar to Kaye about the Seelie and Unseelie Courts. While the depravity and cruelty of the Unseelie Court disgusts him, he has found that the Seelie Court isn't much better after being blind for so long, especially since he has seen his former Queen and former beloved Silarial's true colors. Kaye is his escape from all of it and he didn't want to endanger her by putting a big target on her forehead as someone to torture or kill to get to him. While his reasonings aren't terrible, he doesn't share anything with Kaye. leading to her spiral after he very publicly and soundly rejects her declaration.

Ironside is an amazing end to a strong series. I was on the edge of my seat for much of the end since I couldn't figure out how Roiben and Kaye would get out of their predicament. The clever thinking and faerie logic that leads the story in unexpected places is unparalleled. Holly Black is the queen of faerie stories as far as I'm concerned and I can't wait to read The Cruel Prince when it comes out. She always writes unexpected stories with engaging characters and I will read every book she writes, especially if it's in the fae world. ( )
  titania86 | Jul 11, 2017 |
Faeries that are trapped ironside (ie in the city built of steel, comprised of iron) which is harmful to themselves, are met by Kaye, a changeling, and her friend, also an outcast. Adventures ensue. ( )
  J9Plourde | Jun 13, 2017 |
Ironside follows shortly after the events of [b:Tithe|46777|Tithe A Modern Faerie Tale (Book 1)|Holly Black|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1170343494s/46777.jpg|1460966] and [b:Valiant|266607|Valiant A Modern Tale of Faerie (Book 2)|Holly Black|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1173279413s/266607.jpg|588218]. Roiben was a loyal knight of the Seelie Queen, even after she sent him to serve her sister, the Queen of the Unseelie Court. After countless years of torment and cruelty, he brought about the Unseelie Queen's death and now presides over her court. At his coronation, he sets an impossible quest for his lover, the pixie Kaye, to keep her safe from the war between the courts. Of course Kaye will have none of this romantic nonsense, and pledges to fulfill his quest. Meanwhile, Kaye's bff Corny is dealing with the rage and self-loathing left behind by his enthrallment and his sister's death.

This book feels so genuine. The characters are each and every one of them fully fleshed out--Corny is particularly real. The fey courts and the human world (aka "Ironside") are described with a precise poetry. Unlike Emma Bull's [b:War for the Oaks|70582|War for the Oaks|Emma Bull|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1170736704s/70582.jpg|144029] or say, Poppy Z Brite's [b:Lost Souls|452244|Lost Souls|Poppy Z. Brite|http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/718N3NF4Q2L._SL75_.gif|440863], the descriptions of the fey and the punked out humans never feel like wish-fulfillment. The entire book is about negotiation, re-negotiating power, trying to come to terms with an untenable situation and new, uncomfortable knowledge about oneself. I loved it! I read the entire book in about an hour. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
It’s time for Roiben’s coronation -- but when Kaye tries to swear her undying love to him, he sends her on an impossible quest which banishes her from his presence, seemingly forever. In her quest to find belonging, she finds herself a pawn in the games of the fae. Can a pixie outplay a queen? I bought this series at a used bookstore, and it sat on my to-read shelf for god-only-knows how many years before I finally picked it up and read it. It was good, but YA; book 2 definitely took a weird spin into unrelated territory before turning back; story elements I expected never appeared. It was satisfying, but the books went back into the used bookstore bag without much regret.
( )
  lyrrael | Oct 17, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Holly Blackprimary authorall editionscalculated
Yuen, SammyCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To my parents, Rick and Judy, for not sticking a hot poker down my throat or otherwise attempting to trade me back to the faeries.
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Despite her casting him down to this place, despite the fresh bruises on his skin and the blood under his nails, Roiben still loved Lady Silarial.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0689868219, Paperback)

In the realm of Faerie, the time has come for Roiben's coronation. Uneasy in the midst of the malevolent Unseelie Court, pixie Kaye is sure of only one thing -- her love for Roiben. But when Kaye, drunk on faerie wine, declares herself to Roiben, he sends her on a seemingly impossible quest. Now Kaye can't see or speak to Roiben unless she can find the one thing she knows doesn't exist: a faerie who can tell a lie.

Miserable and convinced she belongs nowhere, Kaye decides to tell her mother the truth -- that she is a changeling left in place of the human daughter stolen long ago. Her mother's shock and horror sends Kaye back to the world of Faerie to find her human counterpart and return her to Ironside. But once back in the faerie courts, Kaye finds herself a pawn in the games of Silarial, queen of the Seelie Court. Silarial wants Roiben's throne, and she will use Kaye, and any means necessary, to get it. In this game of wits and weapons, can a pixie outplay a queen?

Holly Black spins a seductive tale at once achingly real and chillingly enchanted, set in a dangerous world where pleasure mingles with pain and nothing is exactly as it appears.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:59 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

As the possessor of Roibin's true name, sixteen-year-old Kaye returns to Faeryland to try and complete a nearly-impossible quest that will release him from the spell of the faery queen who holds him in thrall.

» see all 3 descriptions

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