Just under 4 stars. YA - some violence (more hints at violence), no sex.Donna survived an attack by dark elves that killed her father, drove her mother mad, and left her damaged. Several surgeries later by alchemical genius the Maker, her arms and hands are tattooed with iron and silver, giving her strength but marking her as different from everyone else. Her life is full of secrets - from what happened to her family, to her involvement with the secretive Order of the Dragon, to the very existence of elves. She tries to keep some normalcy in her life, in the form of her best friend Navin, but lying to him is taking it's toll. Then she meets someone else with a past, Navin is kidnapped, and Donna has to decide who to trust and how far she will go.This one was really easy to get into. It is a very fast-paced read. I've read a lot of books with loner, embittered-by-past-trauma heroines (some work better than others), but this one easily found the balance between toughness and vulnerability. There is a romance, but not a triangle, at least not yet.I enjoyed the characters, but this is definitely a book 1. More questions cropped up than were answered. My only detraction was that the ending felt too rushed - too much happened at once with too many threads left hanging. That said, I really got into the book and want to know what's going to happen next, so I'll be reading book 2.