01 May 2012

The Iron Witch

by Karen Mahoney

Random House Australia. Young Adult. Paperback RRP $18.95

Donna Underwood is home schooled because of an incident that happened when she attended the local high school. She has been labelled Freak by her old classmates. Donna agrees. She’s never seen herself as anything but.

When Donna was seven her father died trying to save her from a fey attack and her mother went mad. Donna also nearly died from horrific injuries that day but with the help of magic, her body is complete again… except her hands and arms have now been intricately tattooed with iron.

Her parents were great alchemists and now Donna is realising, as a young adult, that her heritage is not going to let her live a normal life.

Donna’s only friend is her neighbour, Navin Sharma. A normal boy who has no idea of who or what Donna is and has never questioned why she won’t reveal what is underneath her gloved arms and hands. Navin is a true friend that accepts Donna unconditionally.

When Navin is kidnapped by the dark and evil wood elves, Donna must finally use what she knows to help save her friend.

With the help of a boy, Xan, who has secrets of his own, Donna has to confront not only the elves, but her alchemist teachers and guardians and the secrets that they have kept from her. Will she betray what her father died trying to protect?

A wonderful and enchanting modern story that seeps with old mystical tales of fairies and elves. Donna Underwood’s story will continue with Book II coming soon. Karen Mahoney has had her short story anthologies published in The Eternal Kiss and Kiss Me Deadly which the Reading Stack reviewed in September 2009 and September 2010 respectively.


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