About the book:
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 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 are true? Step by step Jane unlocks the secrets of a new life—and discovers just how far she will go to become whole again.
When I first read about the book’s plot, I thought it would be an amazing retelling of Jane Eyre, especially since the fantasy element I love so much in books would be added. I mean, Jane Eyre and fey… But I was sadly disappointed.
The writing wasn’t bad; it’s one of the things I did like about the book. I also liked how Connolly built up a whole alternate setting where humans had depended on the fey for the technology they used and how that dependence came back to bite them with vengeance. And there was also the mystery of the “ugly women, who enter his closed studio...and come out as beautiful as the fey,” which I liked, but did wish it had been given a bigger air of mystery.
But as the story progressed, I felt it dragging and, besides that slow paced progression, there were other things that got in the way of me fully enjoying the story, like her flashbacks. I don’t like the use too many flashbacks as a storytelling device, especially if most of them retell the same event, even if it’s written in different ways.
Also, the book lacked in the romance department. I, for one, did not notice how their relationship progressed until it hit me and I was left thinking, “When did that happen?” The ending also felt a bit rushed.
The book is not bad, but it really wasn’t for me, even though I really wanted it to be.
*Thanks to NetGalley and Tor/Forge Books for providing me with a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
*I am not affiliated with Amazon or any other store.