Iron Cast Review
There something about reading a book that isn’t just good, but is exactly what you are in the mood for, the fantastic feeling of knowing you have another new favourite book. A feeling that you just need to share around by telling everyone they need to read it…
It is in that spirit I tell you to go read Iron Cast by Destiny Soria.
Originally I was just captivated by a truly stunning cover design by Alyssa Nassner, but ending up falling in love with the characters. Perhaps it’s helped by the fact I had just finished the latest Throne of Glass and was in desperate need of some strong female friendships, but Ada and Corinne are the most important relationship of YA 2016 in my opinion.
Set in Boston as the threat of prohibition looms, Ada and Corinne are hemopaths, people with ‘afflicted’ blood that allow them to create magic. A skill that has been outlawed, and practices are sent to the nightmarish Haversham Asylum, however each night Ada and Corinne preform in secret for crowds at the Cast Iron Nightclub. The place they met and made their home. However as people go missing and betrayals become clear the two only have each other to rely on.
How much do I love this book, let me count the ways.
First off, I’ve already mentioned the female friendship, but it really bears repeating. So often in YA with female leads the focus is on romantic relationships, often to the point that potential love interests will outnumber platonic friends and I am very sick of that trend. Ada is pragmatic, restrained, as she has to be in a city that doesn’t just hate her for her hemopathy but for her skin colour as well. Corinne is more reckless, a confidence built by a life of few limitations but incredibly heavy expectations. The two of them complement each other well, and you do get the sense of just how much they mean to each other.
Secondly the setting is great, despite the occasionally oppressive atmosphere of racism or iron of Heversham, it is so refreshing to have a setting we haven’t seen in YA. Underground night clubs through to large family estates, I will say that if you like very detailed settings you might end up disappointed. Unlike a lot of other fantasy the setting doesn’t come through in descriptive language but instead it’s set up through the characters actions, the only aspect that really gets focus is the presence of iron. Which causes pain to hermopaths.
Thirdly; hemopathy. A magic system that is mysterious in its origins, and also in its limitations. However the rules and differences are well set up, Ada is a songsmith, able to song to push emotions onto others, Corrine a wordsmith, able to create illusions through reciting poems. There are a few other ways magic can manifest but I won’t spoil it for you here.
If any of this interests you, check it out, this book is Destiny Soria’s debut novel and I can’t wait to see what she does next.
Iron cast is available on Amazon
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