My Rating: 3.5/5
Author: Billy Wong
Title: Iron Flower (Legend of the Iron Flower)
“Years are only one way to age in this tale of a young warrior whose army-slaying sword belies her kind heart.
One of the greatest fighters in the world, nearly indestructible Rose lets few things strike fear into her—but magic is one of them. Nonetheless, she seeks out the magical dangers left by the ancients alongside warrior partner Finn and curious scholar Derrick in order to protect others from them. Their mission is complicated by Rose and Finn’s budding romance, as her choice of lifestyle conflicts with his expectations for the woman he loves. But after their quest pits against such titanic foes as a prince able to slay a thousand men in a day and a draconic archmage, will Rose be forced to embrace the very magic she fears?”
Iron Flower is the second book that follows Rose Agen in her battles and adventures. This time she works together with Finn and Derrick to collect and stop cursed artifacts and evil magic, while facing battles of invading forces. I’ve read the first book Iron Bloom, but I think a person could jump right into this one without much trouble—although if you are thinking about reading both stories, you should obviously read the first one first. This story picks up about 2 years after the last, with a flashback to a scene in the first book during the prologue.
The story is written in third person mostly following Rose, Derrick, and Finn. Rose is still the warrior and joins up with Finn and scholar, Derrick, to rid artifacts that may be cursed to avoid any inhuman possession like Rose has met with prior. Rose is still the strong woman she was in the first book and also still concerned about the welfare of the people and those she loves. As the story of Rose progresses from the first book to the end of this book, it’s hard to imagine Rose ever dying. The battles that are fought in this book are still perilous towards Rose and her friends, but the reader is kind of used to her not dying from “mortal wounds.”
The plot moved along well. There is action and adventure similar to the first. This time there is more magic and dangers involved. Should old magic be brought back into the world? How do they stop the evil possessions/creatures that are a result of the magic? What are the invading forces looking for-magic? The book obviously leaves room for another installment. I wonder how there will be a new element to the story. I feel that to make the story develop there needs to be something that Rose must face that she can’t use her physical strength and weird healing assets on. The battling outcomes are more predictable – even the ending battle was not described. Hence, something new will need to be added to keep the story going, in my opinion.
The Bottom Line:
Overall, it was a nice quick read. If you like strong female characters and fantasy/adventure, you should try this book.