Monday, October 22, 2012

The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa [ARC REVIEW]

     TITLE: The Lost Prince
                (Call of the Forgotten #1)
     AUTHOR: Julie Kagawa

     PUBLISHER: Harlequin Teen
     PUB DATE: Oct 23, 2012
Summary from Goodreads:

"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’d 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 myth and talking cats, of magic and seductive enemies. But when destiny comes for Ethan, there is no escape from a danger long, long forgotten.

This novel is one of Julie’s books that will have you demanding for the second one as soon as you finish your read.
"

Rating:

Ethan Chase has been seeing the fey for his entire life. Once the fey know you can see them, they would never leave you alone.

At four years old, Ethan had been swept into the Nevernever, kidnapped by the Iron King, and was left traumatized over the experience after Meghan rescued and taken him back home. Add the fact that his sister has become one of them and is now a ruler of the Iron Realm.

Ethan has tried and failed in keeping the fey away, but once they started disappearing, he is thrown into the world again to warn his sister, and hopefully save the rest of the fey he so despises.

I have cherished and loved The Iron Fey series ever since I read the Iron King. Time and time again, Julie Kagawa has written installments of it that I cannot get enough of. So when news of The Lost Prince came about, I was one of those first in line to grab the chance to read it. I can say this because, as scary as it might sound, I have gone completely stalker-mode over Julie’s blog and every nook and corner of the web, anticipating news about this spin-off. Sorry, I was creepy. Not happening again… uhm, well, anytime soon that is. *playing innocent*

So how do I feel about The Lost Prince? Uh… You might want to sit down (if you already are then find a comfortable position); this is going to take a while…

Characters. Let’s start with Ethan. My have this boy grown up so much. The once cute and innocent little boy has become quite a thought-of rebellious teenager. Very emo. And very, very angry. Can’t say I like that about him. But I do empathize. In spite of how badly I want to dislike Ethan, I can’t help but feel compassion. Looking back to what he’s been through at such a young age and to never even have a break from this crazy life. How else would I expect him to feel?

Now moving on to Kenzie – annoying! Sorry, but seriously she really was. But in the end I guess she had a definite reason for going all out stubborn. You see this is kind of my problem. I empathize too much. Although I gotta say, the moment I found out the reason behind Kenzie’s insistence… Mandy Moore started singing Cry in my head – awkward! [An “A Walk to Remember” moment].

Last but not the least, Kierran. Damn I didn’t get enough of the dude. I wish I got to know him better. There just wasn’t enough time to go through Kierran’s mind with all the angst going on in Ethan’s head. Hopefully I’d get more of Kierran as the series progresses.

I was surprised to see Puck, Ash and Grim make an appearance. Yay! Score!!! That was just what I needed to keep the momentum of the book going. High five, Julie! Yeah, Meghan made a show too but we all know we want more of Ash and Puck. Ha!

So we’re done talking about the characters, let’s move on to the storyline. I am a Filipino (just so you know). I have a point in putting that out, I’m getting there, I swear (boy, do I blabber! Sorry!). So when I read through knowing there were bits and pieces of my culture within this book, I was ecstatic!

Ethan was taking Kali, more known to us as Arnis (some know it as Eskrima), a Filipino martial arts where an individual learns weapon-based fighting skills using sticks and/or blades also using various improvised weapons, but mostly you use sticks. I remember this back when I was still in high school and well, this was part of our PE (gym class). My experience with Kali? I got to hold the sticks… that’s it. Yeah I know, lame! *sticks tongue out*

So anyway, that part of our culture being mentioned in a book such as The Lost Prince – my heart was filled with joy. Only, I have to voice something out. I’m not sure how it goes with actual Kali/Arnis classes but with traditional educational institutes/school here in the Philippines, we don’t call our teachers “Guro”, it’s never used as a proper noun, it’s just a common noun. Guro means teacher but we don’t call them as, say for example the teacher’s name is Javier, “Guro Javier”, we would call him Ginoong Javier (Mr. Javier). Basically we use Binibini (for Ms.), Ginoo (for Mr.), and Ginang (for Mrs). I have not encountered a time where any of my classmates or I called our teacher, Guro. I guess there was a confusion with the cultural differences, maybe since we know that the Japanese use “Sensei” to call their teachers, it would be the same in Filipino. But feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.

Also, there was a mention of the Mang-huhula, which means fortune-teller in the Filipino language and again, not a proper noun. The character described as the Mang-huhula was more of a description of what we call, an “Albularyo”. It means folk healer or herbalist. He’s the go to guy whenever the Fair Folk are involved so maybe that’s the person Julie Kagawa was indicating in the book. Because a manghuhula is more known to us as Gypsys/Fortune Tellers but the commonly used person to attach to fey creatures is the Albularyo (common as in that’s who people consult for spiritual beings and fair folk, in movies and in real life).

Still, I appreciate the idea of incorporating these parts of our culture. For the most part, I kept wondering why Ethan didn’t use swords in the beginning but rather opted for the training sticks as his weapon against the fey. Then his teacher spoke of not using Kali to tolerate violence but to defend oneself and family from those who wish to harm, which is really what Kali is about… at least from what we were told back in high school.

I’ve had a weird sense of déjà vu over reading The Lost Prince. It’s like The Iron King all over again; only with different character names. Ethan was Ash, Kierran was Puck, and Kenzie was Meghan, but minus the love triangle. Bonus points! Although I still find the Iron King characters more pleasant. The familiarity was kind of weighing both in good and bad ways. Bad because there are parts of my mind that went: “I’ve seen this all before”, but good considering I always can’t get enough of something I’ve loved and will continue to love over the years.

*Thank you, Harlequin Teen and NetGalley for the copy of The Lost Prince.

3 comments:

  1. I definitely enjoyed your insight on the book. I finished reading it recently, and I have to say that I agree with all of the things you've pointed out! I hope they fixed the wrong Filipino terms in the final print, though >_>

    - Ellie @ The Selkie Reads Stories

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Ellie. I hope so too. but either way I'm still looking forward to the other books in the series. I can't help but love Julie all the same. :)

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  2. more articulate than my review, great one, Janus! i'm so annoyed with Ethan and Kenzie. LOL

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I really appreciate your thoughts and I hope you take the time to drop me a line. Thanks! ^_^