Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Review: Ironskin by Tina Connolly & A Giveaway

Title: Ironskin
Author: Tina Connolly 
Genre: Fantasy 
Publisher: Tor
Number of Pages: 304
Source: TLC Blog Tours


Jane Eliot wears an iron mask. It’s the only way to contain the fey curse that scars her cheek. The Great War is five years gone, but its scattered victims remain—the ironskin. When a carefully worded listing appears for a governess to assist with a "delicate situation"—a child born during the Great War—Jane is certain the child is fey-cursed, and that she can help. Teaching the unruly Dorie to suppress her curse is hard enough; she certainly didn’t expect to fall for the girl’s father, the enigmatic artist Edward Rochart. But her blossoming crush is stifled by her own scars, and by his parade of women. Ugly women, who enter his closed studio...and come out as beautiful as the fey.  Jane knows Rochart cannot love her, just as she knows that she must wear iron for the rest of her life. But what if neither of these things is true? Step by step Jane unlocks the secrets of her new life—and discovers just how far she will go to become whole again.

Ironskin was a refreshing read because I the different take on the fey and how while this book is based a bit on Jane Eyre, it is vastly different. There are some basic similarities: The heroine's name is Jane, and the heroes name is close enough to Rochester that I secretly kept calling him that. The Jane in this book is poor and is a governess of a child who doesn't have a mother, but that is where the similiarities to Jane Eyre end.

 In the world Jane Eliot lives in, it's been five years since the human war with the fey ended. I thought this was cool because before the war everyone borrowed fey technology to power their houses, cars and just about everything else. Then suddenly, it was gone and they were left with nothing because they had been using the technology for so long that there wasn't anyone left or very few left who knew how to build things the old way.  Jane's boss though, has some of the fey's technology and Jane can't for the life of her figure out how he got it. That's just one mystery she has to solve with her new boss. The other has to do with the masks in his studio and the fact that women come out looking completely different then when they go in. How is it done? Is it worth the price? I loved watching this unravel and Jane coming to terms with it because she herself is scared because she tried to save her brother from a fey bomb, and ended up getting her face scarred because of it. Those who are scared come away with a fey curse of some kind, and wear an iron mask to keep their curse from spreading to those around them. Jane thinks she has long since come to terms with wearing the mask, but Mr. Rochart brings doubts she thought she had just accepted.

Aside from the mysteries that Mr. Rochart brings to the novel there is  Dorie,  Jane's charge. Dorie is human, but has fey abilities. She can make things move just by thinking them. In this new world, that is dangerous because the fey are hated and awful things are done to the few that are found. I loved watching Jane struggle with how to deal with Dorie and this makes her wonder about her curse, and if she is dealing with it the right way.

In this book Jane is not an orphan, and has a sister. I loved this addition because while the two love each other, both resent each other for things that happened during the fey war. Jane's sister is about to married and Jane does not agree with her choice of husbands. I loved how this storyline wove it's way in with the other story lines being told and didn't take away anything, but added another mystery.

The one fault I had with this was that the romance between Jane and Mr. Rochart was not strong. I realize that the author states in the beginning that this is loosely based on Jane Eyre, but with the main character being name Jane and Mr. Rochart so closely resembling Mr. Rochester it was hard not to compare it to Jane Eyre sometimes. I had to remind myself that this was a fantasy book, not a romance!

Ironskin was a delight to read because the heroine was easy to like and easier to cheer for and unexpected bad guys to root against. I loved the world building and different take on Jane Eyre. I can't wait to read more by this author.

 TLC Book tours is being kind enough to give away one copy of the book to a US/Canada resident.  Please leave a comment with your email address (buckeyegirlreads at gmail dot com) or twitter handle so I can contact you if you are the winner. The winner may be contacted through email or a winner's post. If after two days of emailing the winner or posting the winners post I do not hear from the winner, a new one will be chosen. This book is coming from the publisher, and I am not responsible if the book gets lost or damaged in shipping. Giveaway is open until 12:01am est on 10/26/12. a Rafflecopter giveaway