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.
Author: Tina Connolly
Length: 304 Pages
Source: NetGalley for review
First, I have a confession – I’ve read Jane Eyre once, and remember little, so I was apprehensive going into Ironskin, as it’s loosely based off Jane Eyre. I needn’t have worried – I found the book perfectly enjoyable, and it wasn’t filled with references I didn’t understand (like I’d feared it would be).
If you aren’t a Jane Eyre fan or maybe even haven’t read it all, I don’t honestly believe that will detract from the book at all – in my opinion it’s great on its own merits. The world-building is great, and although I didn’t expect to love it, I got drawn into the story very quickly.
Jane is a likeable, relatable character, not stunningly beautiful or magically athletic or any of those other traits that sometimes make it difficult to get into a heroine’s head. What she is, is determined, compassionate and stubborn. Resigned to living with her iron mask, Jane takes on the role of governess to Dorie, partially out of desperation – no one wants to hire the fey-cursed.
Dorie and Jane’s relationship is excellently done, and I loved Dorie as a character. The other characters, from Rochart to Nina to Poule are also great, each with their own secrets and poignantly, beautifully described regrets and heartbreaks. I found the plot gripping and full of twists, and the fey dark, cold and twisted.
Buy it? I’d definitely buy it
In a nutshell: I got sucked in, all in all a pretty great debut!