This was definitely a twist on the classic story of Jane Eyre mixed with just a bit of Beauty and the Beast, and I did love that, but Ironskin seemed very...alternative, I guess you could say. At one moment, the dialogue would sound old-fashioned as it should, and other times it seemed to have a bit of modern slang and that got old real fast. And while it is classified as steampunk (and it is, it's just that there aren't any cool machines or anything 100% steampunk-y), it seemed to be more...well, a bit more paranormal-ish because of the fey.
I actually really liked the world building, despite its non-steampunkness since I'm not a very big fan, honestly. And a VERY big fan of the fey. So the world was definitely perfect for me. The fey are, obviously, evil, but in Ironskin, the Great War (from what I gather, a war between the fey and humans) has ended and the fey haven't been seen in 5 years. But that doesn't me that they aren't still there, waiting and lurking. And they've got a few more tricks up their sleeve...
As for plot, I seriously loved the plot. For me, it wasn't really too fast or too slow and I LOVED Dorie. Even if she was a brat. But I admit, there was a "big twist" that I could predict at least 10 chapters earlier, but the biggest twist? I was sooo not expecting that. And the twist after that? I WASN'T EXPECTING THAT EITHER. And the rest was...definitely surprising to me.Once in a while there's a twist that I knew I should've expected, but just didn't because...well, it's a twist. There's no way to expect it, and there was definitely one of those in Ironskin
The romance was...iffy, mainly good for me. While it was sweet and a bit Frankenstein (which is good!) it did seem...sudden. When Jane realized she liked loved Mr. Rochart, he was suddenly all the more interested like he knew what she felt, which he couldn't...wait...no. Wait...well, you'll have to read it. I'm not sure if he could or couldn't! But I did mostly like the romance, I guess. The ending was definitely satisfying, both plot-wise and romance-wise, so I can't wait to see what happens in book 2 and whether their feelings will develop more!
The one thing that stood out to me was its originality! A curse that makes others feel an emotion? Where socialites are shrinking back from fey-tainted people, but scrambling to get fey-tech at the same time? A love interest who's a father in YA? I doubt anyone's really done that successfully (in YA at least!)but it all seemed to flow naturally, still being Young Adult. I especially loved the parts that mentioned the curses. They were all different and I wanted to learn more about them immediately and I still want to learn more! The more you dive deeper, the more you want to learn. And I doubt there's a book that deals with these elements and is as engaging as Ironskin was!
If you're looking for a steampunk, this isn't the book for you. If you're reading this because it's a retelling of Jane Eyre, don't pick this up! Now, if it sounds interesting then DEFINITELY PICK THIS UP! It was definitely an enchanting story and the world is as stunning as the plot. Original and outstanding, this is definitely a debut that'll make a bang in the YA world!