Review: The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa

The Lost Prince
Julie Kagawa
Series: The Call of the Forgotten, #1
Release Date: October 23rd, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Number of Pages: 379
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 5 of 5 stars

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Don’t look at Them. Never let Them know you can see Them.

That is Ethan Chase’s unbreakable rule. Until the fey he avoids at all costs—including his reputation—begin to disappear, and Ethan is attacked. Now he must change the rules to protect his family. To save a girl he never thought he’s dare to fall for.

Ethan thought he had protected himself from his older sister’s world—the land of Faery. His previous time in the Iron Realm left him with nothing but fear and disgust for the world Meghan Chase has made her home, a land of myths and talking cats, of magic and seductive enemies. But when destiny comes for Ethan, there is no escape from a danger long, long forgotten.

My name is Ethan Chase. And I may not live to see my eighteenth birthday.

This review contains spoilers for the Iron Fey series. You've been warned.

It's no secret that I absolutely love Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey series, and it remains as one of my favorite YA series of all time. However, despite my love for her Iron Fey series, I went into Kagawa's The Lost Prince with slight trepidation for two reasons: reason one being that spin-offs rarely work out well for me, and, at its worst, only end up tarnishing my views of the original series, and reason two being that it's gotten reviews from fans of the Iron Fey series who have been underwhelmed with this addition. It's instances like this that make me wonder if I had a different copy of a book than everyone else, because while most people who've read this so far were disappointed in it when comparing it to the Iron Fey, I absolutely loved this book, and in fact had all my expectations surpassed.

The Lost Prince takes place about thirteen years after the events of The Iron Knight, and revolves around seventeen-year-old Ethan Chase. Ever since Ethan was stolen from his home in order for his older sister, Meghan, now the Iron Queen, to travel to the Nevernever to rescue him, Ethan has been keeping a close eye on his surroundings, as he is permanently able to see the Fey disguised as humans, a gift he does not want. Having to constantly move schools, he is yet again the new student, with the reputation as the rebel who burnt down his old school, and rumors follow him around the school. However, as he's at the new school, he quickly befriends Todd, a phouka, and Kenzie, a teenage girl. But soon Todd is kidnapped by a new species of fey known as The Forgotten, and, in an escape from The Forgotten, Ethan and Kenzie travel to the Nevernever, and attempt to save Todd.

After reading both the entire Iron Fey series, and The Immortal Rules, I really should stop being surprised by Kagawa's immense talent as a writer. Each time I open a book of hers, I'm instantly drawn in, captivated by the lifelike characters, the intricate world-building, and the sheer brilliance of everything. In The Lost Prince, Kagawa has made the character of Ethan a jerk, and while characters who are jerks normally annoy me a lot in YA, I wasn't annoyed in the least with Ethan's characterization. Perhaps it's because typically in YA, it's the love interest that's the jerk, and not the protagonist, so we're not given an insight into what they think and why they're a jerk, but in The Lost Prince, we are provided with that. Ethan doesn't want to act like a jerk, but he's afraid to get close to anyone, and in doing so put them in harm's way, so instead he acts like a jerk in hopes to turn people off of wanting to be his friend. For me, this just made it easier for me to sympathize with him, and as Kenzie was able to break through his tough guy facade, Ethan grew to be a character I loved.

And as for Kenzie, I've seen reviews that label her as annoying, bossy, et cetera, and while I completely see why readers would come to that conclusion about Kenzie, I didn't think that of her at all. I thought she was a sweet and loving character, and I loved seeing her transforming Ethan from this broody character into his real self as the novel progressed. (view spoiler)[And the twist at the end of the book where she confesses that she has leukemia just tore me apart. I don't know if Kagawa will take the easy route and use magic, or a sacrifice, to make Kenzie live, or if she just goes down the path few authors would (but I think Kagawa would) and kill her off, but either way, I know I will cry in the next installments of The Call of the Forgotten. I just know it. (hide spoiler)]

As well as Ethan and Kenzie, another character we're introduced to is Keirran, or, as you may know him, Meghan and Ash's son. I'm not too sure of my feelings for Keirran, and although he did at times resemble a less witty version of Puck, I never felt the same feelings for him that I had for Ethan and Kenzie. However, I didn't dislike him, so I'm not going to take away any stars for his character. He was just less than what I hoped the child of Meghan and Ash would be.

Despite my small qualms in Keirran's character, every other thing in The Lost Prince I loved. I don't know whether it was the mystery, the writing, the breathtaking world-building, some appearances from old yet beloved faces, or the new faces, that I loved most, but as a whole, The Lost Prince exceeded all of my expectations, and managed to leave me speechless - something I should now expect when reading anything written by Julie Kagawa.


  1. great review! I read reviews from other people and they didnt seem to love it as much as you did. they also said there was a lack of characters from the original Iron Fey series. Is that true?

  2. Thanks, Ellie! Yes, it's true that there was a lack of the old characters from the original Iron Fey series (Meghan, Ash, Puck), but all of the scenes in which they do appear in I really enjoyed. Meghan is in the book for about a full chapter (and Kagawa's chapters are pretty long), and Ash is barely in it, and Puck shows up (I think) twice. Grimalkin is in the book a lot, though, so that's always a good thing.

  3. I only skimmed your review, because I have been living under a rock and have not read the Iron Fey series. I know, right?! I read Kagawa's The Immortal Rules shortly after starting my blog and wasn't a huge fan *gasp* again right? So I was kind of staying away from this series. But with this Prince one coming out and seeing how crazy everyone is about the series, me thinks I have to give it a shot!

  4. You definitely have to give The Iron Fey series a shot! I think they're pretty cheap on Amazon, so if you end up reading them, tell me how you like it! The only real spoilers for The Iron Fey in my review are in the synopsis I provided for The Lost Prince, since it's pretty difficult to avoid spoilers for The Iron Fey when summing up this book.


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