IRONSKIN (Ironskin #1) by Tina Connolly
YA Paranormal Romance/Classic Retelling
304 pages, hardcover
Available now (October 2012)
Review copy provided by publisher via NetGalley
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.
A paranormal retelling of JANE EYRE, IRONSKIN starts with a studious young woman looking for a job. Jane spots a notice for a governess so she hops a train to the misty, moor-riddled North where she meets an odd child and her odder father.
Brooding heroes have never really been my thing. I struggled through WUTHERING HEIGHTS and Heathcliff’s melancholy and I struggled with Edward’s same broody, artistic temperament. Jane herself swanned around the estate, poking her nose where it didn’t belong and staring dreamily at closed doors behind which may or may not reside the ever-elusive Edward.
This was not a book I could read for long stretches of time. While I liked the writing and the eerie atmosphere, the morose characters just didn’t spur me along. Eventually, I did finish it but, in the end it was not a book I loved or hated, just not my favorite cup of tea. IRONSKIN was at times intriguing, confusing, frustrating and atmospheric.
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