Friday, August 27, 2010

The Iron Queen excerpt

Crossposted from Harlequin's blog.



Hey everyone! After the release of The Iron Daughter a few weeks ago, one of the questions I’ve been asked most frequently revolves around Meghan and her ability to fight back. I now give you a short excerpt from the upcoming The Iron Queen, the third book in the Iron Fey series, which I hope will help to answer that question:























Ash strode to a nearby rock, swooped down, and tossed me a long, slightly curved stick. When I caught it, I saw that it was actually a leather sheath with a gilded brass hilt poking from the top. A sword. Ash was giving me a sword … why?

Oh, yeah. Because I wanted to learn to fight. Because I’d asked him to teach me.

Ash, watching me with that weary, knowing look on his face, shook his head. “You forgot, did you?”

“Nooooo,” I said quickly. “I just … didn’t think it would be this soon.”

“This is the perfect place.” Ash turned slightly to gaze around the clearing. “Quiet, hidden. We can catch our breath here. It’s a good place to learn while you’re waiting for your father to come out of it. When we’re done here, I have a feeling things will get much more chaotic.” He gestured to the sword in my hand. “Your first lesson begins now. Draw your sword.”

I did. Unsheathing it sent a raspy shiver across the glen, and I gazed at the weapon in fascination. The blade was thin and slightly curved, an elegant looking weapon, razor sharp and deadly. A warning tickled the back of my mind. There was something about the blade that was … different. Blinking, I ran my fingers along the cool, gleaming edge, and a chill shot through my stomach.

The blade was made of steel. Not faery steel. Not a fey sword covered in glamour. Real, ordinary iron. The kind that would burn faery flesh and sear away glamour. The kind that left wounds impossible to heal.

I gaped at it, then at Ash, who looked remarkably calm to be facing his greatest weakness. “This is steel,” I told him, sure that Leanansidhe had made a mistake.

He nodded. “An eighteenth-century Spanish saber. Leanansidhe nearly had a fit when I told her what I wanted, but she was able to track one down in exchange for a favor.” He paused then, wincing slightly. “A very large favor.”

Alarmed, I stared at him. “What did you promise her?”

“It doesn’t matter. Nothing that endangers us in any way.” He hurried on before I could argue. “I wanted a light, slashing weapon for you, one with a good amount of reach, to keep opponents farther away.” He gestured to the saber with his own weapon, a blindingly quick stab of blue. “You’ll be moving around a lot, using speed instead of brute force against your enemies. That blade won’t block heavier weapons, and you don’t have the strength to swing a longsword effectively, so we’re going to have to teach you how to dodge. This was the best choice.”

“But this is steel,” I repeated, listening to him in amazement. He could teach a class with his knowledge of weapons and fighting. “Why a real sword? I could seriously hurt someone.”

“Meghan.” Ash gave me a patient look. “That’s exactly why I chose it. You have an advantage with that weapon that none of us can touch. Even the most violent redcap will think twice about facing a real, mortal blade. It won’t scare the Iron fey, of course, but that’s where training will come in.”

“But … but what if I hit you?”

A snort. “You’re not going to hit me.”

“How do you know?” I bristled at his amused tone. “I could hit you. Even master swordsmen make mistakes. I could get a lucky shot, or you might not see me coming. I don’t want to hurt you.”

He favored me with another patient look. “And how much experience do you have with swords and weapons in general?”

“Um.” I glanced down at the saber in my hand. “Thirty seconds?”

He smiled, that calm, irritatingly confident smirk. “You’re not going to hit me.”

***

Meghan’s story, and the war with the Iron Fey, continues in The Iron Queen, coming February 2011, from Harlequin TEEN.

35 comments:

  1. YAY!! I can't wait!! I know you won't answer but a gotta ask ... so what was the favor?? =0)

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  2. AHHH!!! I love it! I want more of it! :D

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  3. man its going to suck waiting till February!

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  4. I'm still wondering what the favor is...
    I seriously can not wait till February. That's...*Looks at calender* ...6 whole entire months!!

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  5. February is so incredible far away!!!! Thanks for this Teaser!!!!

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  6. I'm so excited about this book!!!! This was great!

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  7. I so don't want to wait that long!! But thanks for the teaser!

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  8. I love love love this<3333 I can't wait for this book... just can't wait!! :D

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  9. Oh February! Why are you so far away?

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  10. Thank you! Iron Queen is number one on my current list of "can't wait to read" books. Thank you for the excerpt.

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  11. Jeez, this is amazing! A really nice treat after reading that mini cliff-hanger from The Iron Daughter. Thank you thank you!

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  12. I just got all calmed down from reading the last book and then you have you go and give us an amazing teaser and get me all antsy again:)!

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  13. Grrrr! MORE!!

    So pretty though :)

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  14. Awww, this is fabulous! Ash... *swoons*. Loved this!!!

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  15. This sounds like a return to Faery. I look forward to Meghan's continuing discoveries with Iron Glamour in this book. I was surprised by the ending in Iron Daughter so I know that Iron Queen will be full of twists and turns as well. I just hope to see Puck again because he's such an endearing character.

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  16. I'm writing a post on Monday about the books I'm slowly dying over as I wait their release. Iron Queen is one of them.
    If you're looking for bloggers to review the final book, I'm ready, able, willing, and available :)

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  17. Hi Julie, I'm 17 and I just started a blog at iceybooks.com and I would like to review your books (possibly thru ARC's) and *maybe* have a little Q&A with you. Thanks in advance! Hafsah

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  18. Can't wait! Love Meghan, Ash, and Puck. Mabbe the series won't be a trilogy??? xD

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  19. Hi, Julie. This is quite out of topic, but I'm curious to know, what's next for you after the Iron Fey trilogy?

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  20. OMG how did I miss this?! I cannot WAIT for this book! I love this scene =) Classic Ash and Meghan. I want to know how the first fight lesson goes :o) hehe

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  21. *grinning like an idiot* oh, wow. I cannot get enough of Ash and Meghan together. Thay are so adorable! Although I do like Puck, so I'm torn between who I want Meghan to end up with. They're both too damn gorgeous! Man, February seems so long away...

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  22. Julie - thank you so much for bringing this wonderful world to us all. Will you do a another short like "Winter's Passage" before "The Iron Queen" comes out in February? It was lovely to get our fill of the faery world in between books.

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  23. Gah! I can't wait! :) Love me some Ash action. ;)

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  24. gaaahh I can't wait until february! too long!

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  25. I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!
    ARG!
    I wish Ash was real and i wish Puck would find someone else...and what was that favor????
    Ash and Meghan are the best!

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  26. February why can't u be here now I need to read this book so badly

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  27. i cant wait I LOVE IRON KING AND IRON DAUGHTER!!!!!!!!! TEAM PUCK FOREVER

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  28. I can't wait!!! This series is AMAZING!!!i really hope that Puck ends up with somebody!!!

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  29. I absolutely cannot wait!

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  30. I'm dying here!!!!!!! I already love it!

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  31. AAAHHH!!!!! i cant wait!! Febuary is so CLOSE!!!

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