Published: March 25th 2008 by Margaret K. McElderry Books (first published 2007)
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy
Pages: Hardcover, First Edition, 453
Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what’s normal when you’re a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who’s becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn’t ready to let her go — especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary’s only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil — and also her father.
To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings — and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?
In this breathtaking sequel to City of Bones, Cassandra Clare lures her readers back into the dark grip of New York City’s Downworld, where love is never safe and power becomes the deadliest temptation.
As I write this, it has been two weeks since I have listened to this book and all the specific thoughts that were in my head as I listened are gone, but I will do my best to remember some of the good feelings I had, because the feelings that I remember are mostly bad. I really had to suffer through this book to get to the end of it, and even then I found that I was disappointed with everything that seemed to go on.
Lets’ start with Clary, who I said in my review of the first book, was very likable and relatable. There wasn’t a change in personality from her, but she started dating Simon for no reason other than to feel some sort of attention since she isn’t getting it from the person she really wants it from (this portion of the plot I will get to in the rant I will post at the bottom because of spoilers). I think, while this is probably something that would happen in real life, it was a silly, stupid, ridiculous way to bring some drama into the book. There are other, more enjoyable ways to bring drama in without taking advantage of a character that offers the best that humanity has to offer, more so than any other character in this entire series. It’s a great way to ruing the vibe of the book and characters.
Poor Simon, the girl he has loved for years agrees to be his girlfriend even though she is in love with her brother. He treats this girl he had known her whole life, with full knowledge that she didn’t love him back, like she was the most valuable thing that the universe could have ever given him. If I had to pick a boy, within the realm of any real possibility, (high lords or fea boyfriends are sadly not able to be included) Simon would be exactly the boy I would pick for myself. I know you can’t often love who you chose, but I’m sad because Simon felt like he had to try to be with Clary just because he loved her and he didn’t get what he deserved back. Yes, I am really bitter about this because there are girls who would love Simon with everything they have!
And then there’s Jace. When I read this book the first time, I really did like Jace. But several years of life experience and many great books series later, I have completely changed my decision. I think Jace is one of the least intelligent and unoriginal characters I have ever read about. He whines all the time, about how terrible his life is, how much he wants his father to love him even though he is a very evil man who has killed some good people. Now don’t get me wrong, I love my dad, but if the man who had raised me so terribly turned out to be the evil man that tried to end peace between most species that vie for power, I wouldn’t care how related we were, I would hate him for everything he had done. So when I call Jace annoying, I mean that he is one of the most annoying characters I have ever had the misfortune of reading about.
I could continue on ranting like this about almost every character in the book, don’t even get me started on the Inquisitor and her tragic backstory which is completely bogus, but I just simply don’t have the time or energy to go into it any more than I have.
However, I would be lying if I said that this book was boring and unentertaining. There were many things, other than the drama, that kept me listening to it, though I will not say here because that would spoil some of the best parts of the book.
The ending, while not as big of a climax as I think there should have been, was still creative and interesting, if a bit long.
So, even though I have written almost all terrible and bad things about this book, I’m still going to give it three stars because there were good parts, and I guess this is the second time I have found myself reading this book.
Beware, below are spoilers! Read at your own risk!
As you might have read in my review of City of Bones, I really hated the whole Clary and Jace are siblings plot line. Of course, as one would expect, it continued to develop in this book. I still believe that this plot was thought up to add some major, unnecessary drama to the story. The whining that Jace refuses to stop, and the fact that Clary won’t accept that yes, this is true, it is really happening, is so annoying I actually started to drown out the book as I was listening to it while driving back and forth to work. I guess all that I can hope for is that the teenage drama will stop, but I know better than that.