I've read a number of books based on the fae but none that have become elaborate enough for me to look to other sources for foundations regarding the myths. So largely I have been uncertain what has been myth and what has been author creativity. But in The Iron King Kagawa elucidates on the foundations of fae myths without info-dumping and without bashing us over the heads with the knowledge. (It also led me to actually look up the myths, which I consider a mark of good writing to make me curious.) I also learned a thing or two about Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream
, which I had absolutely no experience with since I have avoided all Shakespeare that was not forced on me in school.
The main character, Meghan Chase, is thankfully not a wimpy or idiotic character which so many seem to be today. She is logically hesitant and definitely a loyal individual, which is the reason for the entire book (saving her brother). Two of the characters I loved, Puck and Grim, mostly for their humor. The cat is especially entertaining. Puck is another loyal character and I missed him when he was not around. The nemesis/love interest/evil prince Ash I am still uncertain about and will have to see how things evolve in book two. I still am unsure how a kindling of romance even happened. But luckily romance was a limited element in the story but I fear it may hamper following installments.
The Iron King feels like a weird mix of Alice in Wonderland, Narnia and various other childhood favorites. This is not a bad thing in my opinion and I enjoyed the atmosphere set by Kagawa. Overall, the fae myths seem to be well treated in this one and I found it an enjoyable read.