This will have spoilers for Iron King, but hopefully not for Iron Daughter. Iron Daughter is the second in the Iron Fey series. Winter's Challenge is a novella that fits between books 1 and 2, but does not necessarily need to be read to understand the second book.
I read this for the Sequel Challenge and Paranormal Challenge both hosted by Auntie Spinelli Reads.
Meghan fulfills her promise to Ash and travels with him to Tir Na Nog, where she is presented to Queen Mab of the Unseelie Court. As soon as he drops her off, Ash leaves, which devastates Meghan. The coldness of the Court makes Meghan doubt both Ash and her feelings for him and when he treats her badly, she gives up all hope. While she is at the Unseelie Court, the Scepter of the Seasons is delivered signaling the beginning of Winter. Shortly after the delivery a party is held and the Scepter is stolen by the Iron Fey. In the process Ash's oldest brother is killed and Summer is blamed for his death. Ash and his remaining brother Rowan fight over Meghan and Ash and Meghan flee Winter and vow to find the Scepter. Ash refuses to go with Meghan to find the Scepter and sets out on his own. Meghan is joined by Puck and a few unlikely allies. Can Meghan or Ash find the Scepter and prevent a war between Summer and Winter? It will take a combination of powers and some hidden talent to save the Faery and Mortal worlds.
This book was equally as good as the first and possibly a little better. For the first part, Meghan mopes a little too much over Ash, but I think the horrors of her situation can excuse a little downheartedness. The love triangle is nicely done between Ash, Meghan, and Puck. I can't decide if I like Puck or Ash better for Meg, which shows just how good the triangle is. I love the terrifyingly beautiful descriptions of the Faery world and I like that Meghan did get here "how do you like me now" moment at the Winter Formal of her old high school. Lots of action and adventure with this series and just the right amount of romance.
Favorite Character: I do like Meghan, I think she is a strong heroine with just a touch of neediness. However Ironhorse was my favorite. He is loyal to what he believes is best for his people and he protects Meghan at all costs. I even liked him in the first book.
Favorite Quote: "They see only this outer shell, not who I really am, beneath. You have. You've seen me without the glamour and the illusions, even the ones I show my family, the farce I maintain just to survive. You've seen who I really am, and yet, you're still here."
I really enjoyed this one and even though it seems like it took me awhile to read it, really it didn't. Each time I sat down with it, I devoured pages. I give this one 5 cups of cocoa! This is one of my favorite second books in a series.