In this series, Julian Blackthorn writes I-A-M-R-U-I-N-E-D. That pretty much sums up how you'll feel (and how I already feel) when you finish this book. It just completely destroys everything in your soul, but in a good way. And by good way I don't mean good things happened, I mean it's a good book and because of the good quality of the book, you fall in love with the characters and the story. And when things go wrong, it just hits you. If I would have to decide being hit by a truck and the end of this book, I'd say this book provided more pain to my soul. But I still wouldn't want to be hit by a truck anytime soon.
"When people die, our dreams of what they could be die with them. Even if ours is the hand that ends that ends them."
So as I've established, I am in emotional pain and suffering after finishing this book. AND THIS PAIN IS GOING TO LAST FOR TWO FUDGING YEARS BECAUSE THAT LAST BOOK ISN'T COMING OUT UNTIL 2019. Yeah. You heard me. 2019. We gotta wait two years for the next book. Anyone got a time machine? If so, please hit me up. I don't know how I'm going to be able to endure life through these next two years. Actually, yes I do. I'm gonna read other fantastic books, but still, I'm going to have an extremely large hole in my heart until I get my hands on and read Queen of Air and Darkness.
"People often run even when they have nowhere to go. It is all about what you can bear in the place where you are."
Anyway, for those of you living under a rock, Lord of Shadows is the second book in the Dark Artifices Trilogy by Cassandra Clare. For those of you who are living under a gargantuan rock, Cassandra Clare is the author of the Shadowhunter Chronicles, which consists of several series, yes that's write SERIES as in book SERIES, set in the same world, but in different time frames about different characters. The Shadowhunter Chronicles has a very special place in my heart. I've always loved reading, but it was City of Bones (Mortal Instruments Book #1) that really brought me into the reading world and got me OBSESSED. So far, the Shadowhunter Chronicles has three series and two novella bindings. The three series are The Infernal Devices (Clockwork Angel, Clockwork Prince, Clockwork Princess), which is set in 1878, The Mortal Instruments (City of Bones, City of Ashes, City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, City of Heavenly Fire), set in 2006, and The Dark Artifices (Lady Midnight, Lord of Shadows, Queen of Air in Darkness), set in 2012. The two novella bindings are the Bane Chronicles and Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy. BUT GET INTO THIS SERIES, because there's more! If you get into it, there's so much material to fall in love with and it's all spectacular. There's the Last Hours series, that starts coming out next year that follows the next generation after the Infernal Devices, there's a new series on Magnus Bane and there's rumor of another series called the Wicked Powers, following the younger characters of The Dark Artifices. Basically, I'm in for the long haul, and you'd be smart to get in on the Shadowhunter Chronicles because they are GOLD. (I've done reviews on the Infernal Devices (I think), City of Heavenly Fire and Lady Midnight, if you're interest in getting into this series, check the reviews out.)
Now on to actually talking about Lord of Shadows. As usual, this book flew over my already high expectations and just... It was absolutely spectacular. It was everything I'd hoped it would be and more. It had all the things we've come to expect from Cassie's books-- great action scenes, characters that it's impossible not to fall in love with, a riveting plot and last but not least, amazing humor. It's still early in the year, but I have to say that so far this book has won the title of my favorite book of the year. I'm having trouble imagining a book that could trump this one, but I guess we'll have to wait and see.
I really don't now what I can say that will convince you to read this book if you're on the fence about it. It's fantastic. Please, just go read it. You'll love yourself for it later.
Here's the synopsis:
Would you trade your soul mate for your soul?
A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by honor. The word of a Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love.
Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides?
Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own.
When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.
"Break my heart. Break it into pieces. I give you permission."
See, I didn't expect this book to shove its way to my favorite book of the year because there was a lot of competition for the title (mainly A Court of Wings and Ruin), but also because I wasn't all that invested in the main love story of the series-- which is between Emma Carsairs and Julian Blackthorn. Well, I'm still not that invested in their romance, I'm not against it, but I just don't particularly care for them together, either. They're no Jessa or Clace. But really, the romance is a small part of the larger and much more emotionally investing story.
Why don't I love Julian and Emma? I love Emma, she's a great character. It's Julian I really don't like much. I love my dark, tormented characters, but Julian? It's not that he's too dark. Or too evil, because I love characters that are so much more evil than Julian. But Julian... It's like he's got tunnel vision, he only cares for his family and Emma. He'll do anything for them. That's not that bad, right? Hahaha well. He doesn't care what happens to anyone outside his family and Emma, as long as they're okay. Literally, he'll do ANYTHING for his family and ANYTHING against everyone else. I just... I really don't like that about him. He's also a pathological liar and ugh. No. Julian, not a big fan.
You get to meet some new characters in this book, like Zara Dearborn (why isn't there a universal letter, or a key spot for a middle finger?), and you get to go deeper into the workings of the Shadow World and Faerie. And then you also get to know characters in or mentioned in previous books better, such as Kieran, Jaime and... Well I guess you'll just have to wait and see, right?
Not the best part, but one of the best parts of this book is getting to see some well loved characters from the previous books, like Clary and Jace. (There are more, but you're going to have to read it to find out who.) I have to say, I was a whole lot more happy when the previous characters were in the story, because it's like seeing your best friend after a really long time. There's no other way to describe the feeling. Like I read the book because it was really good, but I'm also very emotionally invested in seeing what happens to the older characters, as well as the new ones.
Haha, I was so excited about getting back into the book that from the very first line I was squealing in delight. And also, just so excited and happy at action scenes, humor scenes, awkward scenes and Jace scenes that I was literally squealing in delight and FANNING myself. Yeah. I'm weird, I'll be the first to admit that.
10/10 stars, but really, are you even surprised? There is nothing about this book that wasn't absolutely perfect. Even the ending, it was... horrifying and I would do anything to change it, it was still well written and good for the plot. But still, haha I was so bitter about the ending I refused to write 10/10 on my notebook when I'd finished because just... no.
Now let's get into the book discussion, shall we?
SPOILERS BELOW FOR LORD OF SHADOWS
I love the Jace-Kit relationship, I feel like we have a lot more to see from that. And just. Aw. I love everything about Jace, but we already knew that, didn't we? My question is-- why don't we see any Clary-Kit scenes before Jace and Clary are leaving for Faerie? He's basically in the EXACT SAME situation as she was, except he knew about the Shadowworld and she didn't. She could've really helped him adjust.
I wasn't exactly sure how I'd felt about Kit at first, but by the end of the book I loved him. I loved seeing him come to accept his Shadowhunter heritage and realize that he wanted to be a Shadowhunter, I loved seeing his relationship with Livvy (still crying) and Ty.
Something that was simply not acceptable about this book was Clary saying she thinks she'll die soon. Yeah. I literally wrote in my notes "WHAT THE FUCKING CLARY WILL NOT FUCKING DIE. CASSIE YOU LIAR." Haha, yeah that hurt me emotionally. Though I'm not actually going to hate Cassie for killing Clary, if she does, which I doubt she will, because Clary is her character and I'm sure it would be good for the plot if Cassie did it.
It was nice to flashback to Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy with Jon and Marisol, but then Jon was beheaded so... okay then.
The part that said some like "Most of them had been scribbled in by some idiot named Will H." I absolutely died, especially since Will is Kit's (amazing) ancestor. I just loved all the references in the London Institute to the Infernal Devices characters and to the Last Hours characters (anyone want to tell me what's up with Lucie and Jessie? If you're confused *laughs* me too, but I'm a bit intrigued and super excited as well.)
BUT HOW THE FUCK IS BRIDGET STILL ALIVE? TID TAKES PLACE IN 1878. SHE'S MORTAL. HOW IS SHE STILL ALIVE? Like, yeah that's definitely Bridget because she remembered the scones thing (Oh, Gideon, I'll never stop loving you), but HOW IS SHE STILL ALIVE?!! It's 2012!!!! (In the book).
Also guys, the Warlock that helps them is named "Shade" everyone is freaking out about how that's Ragnor because the green skin... But guys, really? His name is Shade. I feel like that has to be a reference to Mortmain's father, whose name was Shade.
Then Magnus shows up and gets them out of there safely. I was so excited to see Magnus again, because it's Magnus and BECAUSE IT MEANS ALEC. My lovely Alec.
Lol also Magnus of course is the one who pops in when Julian and Emma are in bed together. He's been very good at popping in at inopportune moments.
I actually really started liking Kieran in this book. I'm going to plant my feet firmly when I say I SHIP Mark and Cristina, but really I really really started to like Kieran. When Emma mentioned that Cristina was on a ship to a three way with the boys, I think she voiced all of our thoughts.
Also Mark thinks at one point he really has a thing for dark haired people. Lol, Mark. Me too, buddy, me too.
Reading Ty's letter to Annabel was adorable. It was just so cute. I loved it. But now that we've brought the subject up, I guess it's time to rant.
ANNABEL HOW FUCKING DARE YOU. YOU KILLED YOUR OWN KIN (okay, your own kin killed you, but let's ignore that for a moment). YOU KILLED YOU OWN KIN. YOU KILLED LIVVY HOW COULD YOU. THAT WAS NOT RIGHT. I WAS WILLING TO GIVE YOU A CHANCE. YOU SEEMED LIKE A FAIRLY DECENT CHARACTER WHO I FELT SYMPATHY FOR AND THEN YOU HAD TO GO AND RUIN EVERYTHING BY BEING A SPAZ AND A BITCH ANDKILLING ROBERT (IZZY WONT HAVE HER FATHER TO WALK HER DOWN THE ISLE) AND KILLING LIVVY. NO. NO. I LOVED LIVVY. I LOVE LIVVY. SHE CANNOT BE DEAD. THIS IS A MAGICAL WORLD. SOMEONE FUCKING BRING LIVVY BACK RIGHT NOW. (Actually, I feel like Julian might actually use the Black Volume to bring Livvy back, but still...) CASSANDRA I KNOW YOU HAVE A THING FOR KILLING A CHILD MIDWAY THROUGH THE SERIES AND MAX WAS BAD, BUT IT WAS OKAY. NOT LIVVY THOUGH. HOW THE HELL COULD LIVVY BE KILLED? EVERYTHING WAS GOING TO BE OKAY, WHICH IS WHY WE ALL KNEW IT WOULDN'T BE BECAUSE NO MIDDLE BOOK ENDS OKAY, BUT STILL. OMG HOW COULD THAT HAPPEN. I CAN'T EVEN. THIS BOOK JUST KILLED MY SOUL. HOW COULD WHYYYYY.
Alright. If you couldn't tell, I'm real hurt and salty about Livvy dying, and Robert too. Annabel, you crazy bitch. And also, WHY COULDN'T THEY JUST FUCKING USE THE MORTAL SWORD ON ZARA DUCKING DEARBORN. Why? Now it's BROKEN so we can't actual know the real FUCKING TRUTH. Yeah. This subject makes me a little emotional. If you couldn't tell.
Well, I'm getting a little tired of typing. If any other vital things pop into my head, I'll be sure to make another book discussion post. :) That was a fake smile. My soul has been shattered by that book ending.
"'We are but dust and shadows," said Ty, not looking up from his book.
"Some of use are very handsome dust," Jace added, as the door flew open and stuck her head in.
"Come to the library," she announced. "The tentacle is starting to dissolve."
"You drive me wild with your sexy talk," said Jace, pulling on his gear jacket.'" *squeals* Clace is everything good about life.
"'We'll have to get our energy the old-fashioned way."
Mark looked puzzled. "Drugs?'"
"'The first time we watched Titanic, you cried."
"I have seasonal allergies.'"
"'The Herondales have always been famous for their good looks," said Bridget, "but if you ask me, the Lightwoods are the more sexually charismatic of the bunch."
Alec spit out his tea. Magnus seemed to be keeping a straight face, but with an effort.'"
"Really? You all have to sleep with Magnus Bane? How exciting for you."
Thanks for reading!