Monday, February 15, 2016

Review: Iron Crowned (Dark Swan #3) by Richelle Mead

Iron Crowned by Richelle Mead
An embattled mystically entwined with our own,
the Otherworld is at the mercy of one woman...
Shaman-for-hire Eugenie Markham is the best at banishing entities trespassing in the mortal realm. But as the Thorn Land’s queen, she’s fast running out of ways to end the brutal war devastating her kingdom. Her only hope: the Iron Crown, a legendary object even the most powerful gentry fear…
Who Eugenie can trust is the hardest part. Fairy king Dorian has his own agenda for aiding her search. And Kiyo, her shape-shifter ex-boyfriend, has every reason to betray her along the way. To control the Crown’s ever-consuming powers, Eugenie will have to confront an unimaginable temptation--one that will put her soul and the fate of two worlds in mortal peril…
Publishes in US:  March 31st 2011 by Bantam
Genre: adult fantasy
Audience alert: this is an adult book. It does contain sex scenes that aren't fade to black. Also subjects of rape, drinking and violence. If you are under 18, get your parent's advice if this is a book for you.
Source: library
Series? Dark Swan #3
My review:
#1 Storm Born
#2 Thorn Queen
Dark Swan #4 already released

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        I wanted to read Thorn Queen because I love Richelle Mead, as well as the first in this series. Eugenie is charismatic, and I love her passion and energy. She is now the queen of a kingdom in the other world since she defeated its king. She is gaining experience with both magic and leadership, but she still has a long way to go. I love the cast of characters, they are flawed, complex and they all bring something to the table and to Eugenie's character. 

     The romance is definitely into triangle mode (spoilers follow if you haven't read the 2nd). Except for now, her and Kiyo are broken up because of the pressure her magic, and ruling as well as him being the father of queen Maiwenn's baby. Dorian has given her favor after favor, helping her with trade and he really seems to understand her. Kiyo fought about her learning the magic of her father the dreaded Storm King, who ruled ruthlessly, and even though deceased, his name is like voldemort in the Otherworld where the Fae live. While I like Dorian, I am fearful that he is just going to ultimately be put on back burner since Kiyo and Eugenie were together first. But I can't help but admire Dorian for all he is doing to help Eugenie and his sincerity and understanding.  

   So, I just wrote that paragraph and about halfway through, and sure enough, as much as Eugenie has grown and changed, she is still kind of a mess, especially with the two men warring for her heart. She goes back and forth, and she is expecting perfection from Kiyo and Dorian while wanting them to accept the things about her that she is struggling with. Given, she does have reason to have been angry with Kiyo in the last, and Dorian does do some manipulation, but he has done that all along. His quest for power, wanting to rule with her, and conquer more lands was always what he desired, along with fathering a child with her. And she has honestly cheated on them both and that is a little hard for me to handle, but never the less, I still love her character and can't stop reading. 

   There is much more to the story going on than her love life as well, there are things she is learning about the Otherworld, and she is still trying to balance her two lives, and the demands that each put on her. She has great staff to help her, and I love the way they have stepped up but still managed to respect Eugenie and work for the good of the kingdom. But they are in war, and Eugenie is looking for peace. There are no easy answers, and even the quest for the crown that seems like an ultimate bargaining for peace turns out to be more than she ever expected. 

   Some things that she feared start to take place in this one and Eugenie has impossible choices to make. It is even harder on her because of the falling out she had with Rolland, and therefore she isn't in close contact with him who understands the shaman part of her, and she is also not in close of touch with her mom because she doesn't want to come between them. 

    The things that happen both shocked me and I also saw it coming. But some of the extremes really surprised me as well as what drives her back and forth between the worlds and men after her heart. 

    Loved it and absolutely can't wait for the last one. 

Bottom Line: Eugenie's indecisiveness with some things is frustrating but I still loved the book.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
Do you think you could split your life between two worlds with different magic and responsibilities in both?

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