When I was invited to be a part of THE IRON TRAITOR Blog Tour I was so unbelievably happy, excited, surprised and honored. It may not seem like it but I am a total fangirl of author Julie Kagawa. And it’s not just because of her Blood of Eden series. I have been in love with her Iron Fey series for years.
When I was first introduced to Julie Kagawa’s writing it was before I ever heard of the term “book blogger.” It was before I could call myself a fan of YA fantasy and faeries. So when I first dove into THE IRON KING I was skeptical. I’d visited Stephen King’s Waste Lands, I’d taken the journey with Dorothy in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, I’d gone down rabbit hole with Alice and I’d met Holly Black’s faeries. And I wondered how this story could possibly live up to all of those.
Well it did. It was magical and wonderful and captivating and amazing. And what set it apart, what made me immediately purchase and dive into the second book in that series, was its characters. In addition to creating worlds that transport, Julie Kagawa creates characters that I can’t help but adore – Meghan, Ash, Puck, Grim, Ironhorse and now Ethan.
But it was Grimalkin who I first fell in love with. Yes, the cait sith had me wrapped around his paw from practically the first moment I met him. He is arrogant and patronizing and maddening and sarcastic and maddening… oh wait, I said that, didn’t I? But given his propensity to disappear at the most inopportune of moments, I think he deserves to be called that particular word twice.
But he is also charming and clever and… dare I say it… even lovable. He always makes me smile. I am always rooting for him. And every time he makes an appearance in one of Julie Kagawa’s stories I am absolutely thrilled.
And to prove just why I think Grim is awesome, I thought I’d share my favorite Grimalkin quotes and passages.
(a.k.a. Why I think Grim is awesome.)
This scene from Chapter Seven in THE IRON KING when we first meet Grim is one of my most favorites. He’s responding to Meghan’s question where she asks what he wants. And in just these few lines he reveals exactly who he is – frustrating, arrogant, wildly entertaining.
The cat didn’t blink. “Human,” he said, and if a cat could sound patronizing, this one nailed it, “think about the absurdity of that question. I am resting in my tree, minding my own business and wondering if I should hunt today, when you come flying in like a bean sidhe and scare off every bird for miles around. Then you have the audacity to ask what I want.” He sniffed and gave me a very catlike stare of disdain. “I am aware that mortals are rude and barbaric, but still.”
“I’m sorry,” I muttered automatically. “I didn’t mean to offend you.”
Grimalkin twitched his tail, and then turned to groom his hindquarters.
This scene, from THE IRON KING, when Ash and Puck are arguing and Meghan is feeling the effects of faery wine gives me all the smiles. It shows, in a backhanded kind of way, that Grim really does care. And he has such a way with words, doesn’t he?
Grimalkin sighed loudly, interrupting the conversation. Both faeries turned and glared at him. “This is all quite fascinating,” Grimalkin said, his voice slurring in my ears, “but instead of posing and scratching the ground like rutting peacocks, perhaps you should look to the girl.”
In THE IRON DAUGHTER, in this scene where Puck and Meghan are trying to have a romantic moment, Grim manages to ruin things with a couple of classic lines. I didn’t mind this, at all. But then again I was always Team Ash.
“If you are going to do that, would you mind not jostling the bed so much?” came a sarcastic voice near the headboard. “Perhaps you could roll around on the floor.”
Blushing furiously, I looked up. Grimalkin lay on the pillow, watching us with a bemused, half-lidded stare. Puck followed my gaze and let out an explosive sight.
“Did I ever mention how much I hate cats?”
“Do not blame me, Goodfellow.” Grimalkin blinked, managing to sound bored and indignant at the same time. “I was minding my own business long before you and the princess started humping like rabbits.”
In this scene from THE IRON QUEEN, Grim somehow manages to be helpful, annoyed and condescending all at once. I don’t think I could love him more.
“I am rather weary, human,” Grimalkin warned, flattening his ears in a rare but dangerous show of temper. “Considering I spent all night tracking down that gremlin, I would politely ask that you let me sleep before we go trekking down the same path we just came from. If you are looking for the Winter prince, he is up on the balcony with the insect things.” Grimalkin sniffed and closed his eyes. “Why not go pester him for a while?”
My heart leaped. “Ash? Ash is on the balcony?”
Grimalkin sighed. “Why do humans deem it necessary to repeat everything that is told them?” he mused, but I was already out the door.
Grimalkin always likes to remind anyone and everyone just how slow they are, how inconvenienced and put upon he is, while at the same time showing how little he is affected by it all. This scene from THE IRON KNIGHT is a perfect example of that.
Grimalkin was waiting for us atop a broken limb at the edge of the tree line, washing this paw with exaggerated nonchalance. “That took longer than I expected.” He yawned as we came up. “I was wondering if I should take a nap, waiting for you.” Giving his paw a final lick, he looked down at us, narrowing his golden eyes. “Anyway, if you two are quite finished, we can move on.”
“Did you know about the Thornguards?” I asked. “And their attack on the Iron Kingdom?”
Grimalkin snorted. Flicking his tail, the cat rose and sauntered along the splintered branch with no explanation. Hopping lightly to an overhead limb, he vanished into the leaves without looking back, leaving Puck and me hurrying to catch up.
There are always easier, more polite ways of doing things. And then there’s Grim’s way. This scene in THE IRON KNIGHT reminds me of why I will forever love Grim’s way of doing things.
“Hmm. For such a well-trained, somewhat paranoid warrior, you are certainly difficult to rouse. Very well.” The weight on my chest slid off, much to my relief, and I heard a thump as it dropped to the floor and walked away. “We shall have to resort to more drastic measures.”
Just as I was wondering what “drastic measures” were, a patter of footsteps scampered toward the bed. There was a brief pause…and then that sold heavy weight landed square on my stomach.
“Oof!” I bolted upright with a gasp, the breath driven from my lungs in a painful, vicious expulsion. Instantly awake, I clutched my ribs and glared at Grimalkin, sitting on the bed with a smug, pleased expression on his face.
I had not expected to see Grim in the Call of the Forgotten spin-off series, so I was totally thrilled he made more than just a cameo. In fact, Grim may have met his match when he was reacquainted with Ethan in THE LOST PRINCE. Both characters are ornery and are no stranger to sarcasm. But this scene shows just how mysterious Grim can be, how cryptic.
I glared at the cat as we maneuvered through the trees again, wincing as my bruised ribs twinged. “You couldn’t have warned us any earlier?”
“I tried,” Grimalkin replied with a sniff. “But you were too busy discussing hostile vegetation and how faeries are completely untrustworthy. I practically had to yell to get your attention.” He glanced over his shoulder with a distinct I-told-you-so expression. “Next time, when I suggest you move silently through a dangerous part of the Nevernever, perhaps you will listen to me.
“Huh,” Kenzie muttered, walking along beside me. “You know, if all cats are like him, I’m kinda glad they don’t talk.”
“That you know of, human,” Grimalkin returned mysteriously, and continued deeper into the wyldwood.
And I just had to tease this new favorite passage from THE IRON TRAITOR which reminds me of why I adore this cantankerous cait sith. As always, Grim is irritable and impatient and insistent on working on his own timeline. He is every bit the Grim I’ve come to know and love.
“You ask a wearisome amount of questions.” Grimalkin stood and stretched, curling his tail over his back. “Honestly, I do not know how mortals came up with that ridiculous phrase ‘curiosity killed the cat.’ Certainly they have never been around the lot of you.” Straightening, he gazed up at me, waving his tail. “Come, now. Time is of the essence. Do you wish to get into the Summer Court or not?”
“What?” I blinked at him. “How did…?” The cat stared at me, and I raised my hands. “You know what, I don’t care anymore. You’re here to take us to Titania, right? Fine. Lead the way.”
“Finally.” The cat sniffed and gave me a look of triumph. “I never thought I would see the day when a human said something sensible.”
Of course my favorite line of Grim’s is a parting line and one he says often, as if it explains everything. And it kind of does. It is…
“I am a cat.”
So you can see, that while I always will adore Meghan, Ash, Puck and Ethan, there will always be a special place in my heart for my favorite cait sith Grimalkin, a.k.a. Devil’s Cat. He is, after all, one of the many, many reasons why I think Julie Kagawa is awesome.
If you’d like to know a little bit more about her, check out her bio, which follows immediately below. And if you want to visit her online, there are a number of places where you can do just that.
About Julie Kagawa
Julie Kagawa was born in Sacramento, California. But nothing exciting really happened to her there. So, at the age of nine she and her family moved to Hawaii, which she soon discovered was inhabited by large carnivorous insects, colonies of house geckos and frequent hurricanes. She spent much of her time in the ocean, when she wasn’t getting chased out of it by reef sharks, jellyfish and the odd eel.
To pay the rent, Julie worked in different bookstores over the years, but discovered the managers frowned upon her reading the books she was supposed to be shelving. So she turned to her other passion: training animals. She worked as a professional dog trainer for several years, dodging Chihuahua bites and overly enthusiastic Labradors, until her first book sold and she stopped training to write full-time.
Julie now lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where the frequency of shark attacks are at an all-time low. She lives with her husband, two obnoxious cats, one Australian shepherd who is too smart for his own good and the latest addition, a hyperactive Papillon puppy.
About The Iron Traitor
Series: The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten #2
Release Date: October 29, 2013
Formats: Paperback, eBook
In the real world, when you vanish into thin air for a week, people tend to notice.
After his unexpected journey into the lands of the fey, Ethan Chase just wants to get back to normal. Well, as “normal” as you can be when you see faeries every day of your life. Suddenly the former loner with the bad reputation has someone to try for-his girlfriend, Kenzie. Never mind that he’s forbidden to see her again.
But when your name is Ethan Chase and your sister is one of the most powerful faeries in the Nevernever, “normal” simply isn’t to be. For Ethan’s nephew, Keirran, is missing, and may be on the verge of doing something unthinkable in the name of saving his own love. Something that will fracture the human and faery worlds forever, and give rise to the dangerous fey known as the Forgotten. As Ethan’s and Keirran’s fates entwine and Keirran slips further into darkness, Ethan’s next choice may decide the fate of them all.
About The Lost Prince
Series: The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten #1
Release Date: October 23, 2012
Formats: Paperback, eBook Audio
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 tour comes with two awesome giveaways – US/Canada ONLY.
DAILY GIVEAWAY – A copy of THE LOST PRINCE or THE IRON TRAITOR + a beautiful locket.
GRAND PRIZE GIVEAWAY – A Trollbeads bracelet inspired by The Forgotten and a one-of-a-kind Chibi Keirran.
Full contest rules can be found on Kismet Book Touring’s website, HERE.
Enter in the Rafflecopter below…
The Tour Schedule
For more information about the tour be sure to check out Kismet Book Touring’s THE IRON TRAITOR page HERE.