Ironskin

Ironskin - I started out liking this book. It had a clever setting and an interesting story. I enjoyed reading about this world that once ran on fairy magic and then had to adjust after its sudden loss. I loved reading about Jane and Dorie interacting and was curious to see how Dorie's conflict would be resolved. And then, like so many other books, everything went to hell as soon as the love interest showed up.I hated every single scene with Edward. He was so poorly written that he didn't even come off as a jerk or anything, he was just...weird. Jane's reactions to him were weird. He didn't seem like a person, not a good person or a bad person. He was just a collection of odd-ball comments and nonsense that made Jane infinitely more annoying as she blathered on about his 'archaic' speech. I was not aware that 'archaic' meant 'using the same vernacular as everyone else, but having nothing to do with the subject at hand.'And then everything just went downhill. Bits of the book were still good, but it turned into some Frankenstein mess of a novel, like it had been cobbled together out of multiple previous drafts, but the pieces didn't quite fit right. There were too many stories going on at once, and no attempt to make them flow. Everything had an overblown reaction attached to it, nothing was allowed to happen naturally, and there were several points where I had to flip through the pages wondering if I'd missed something, because the pacing was just that off. I finally gave up on the novel about 2/3rds in, when Jane decided to make a big deal about the 'rage curse' that she had, going on about how her iron skin 'kept all the rage inside.' She didn't rage once in this novel. Not once. She didn't suppress her rage or get hindered by it or anything. She was, frankly, a very normal character with rather tepid emotions, and the only concession given to this 'curse' was that she angested about being angry now and then, even though she never got angry.It's really a shame. If the story had stuck to being about Jane and Dorie and their respective curses, if Edward had stayed a mysterious distant employer and not some walking ball of insta-love, this could have been an excellent novel. (And if there had been a better line editor. The writing in this was downright irritating at times, and just average at its best. I got the feeling that it was trying to hard to sound Regency-era-ish, but the author didn't actually know how to do that, so it ended up a poor imitation with terrible grammar and inconsistent tenses.)