Wednesday, 31 July 2013

The Mortal Instruments- Cassandra Clare BOOK REVIEW

Possible spoilers if you’ve not read all of the books in the series

Fuelled by the release of the Mortal Instruments being made into a film franchise and by the recommendation from a friend I began reading these books a while ago.  The first in the series of five books (so far, I believe that there will be a sixth coming out soon) called The City of Bones kickstarts the series.

It follows the characters of Clary, Jace, Simon, Isabelle, Alec, Magnus and the standard villain Valentine. Clary realises pretty soon into the book that she isn’t the normal human that she thinks that she is but has Shadow Hunter blood in her, and Jace, Isabelle and Alec, similar to herself are Shadow hunters that only she can see, the only difference is that they are trained fighters and she is not. Simon is what the Shadow Hunters call a mundane. It’s a pretty good book with a pretty good plot. However, there is a twist at the end of this book that makes me want to cry, because it is just so horrendous and gross, if you’ve read the book then you will know exactly what I am talking about.

It’s neither ground breaking nor something to be ignored, as it clearly hasn’t been. I believe that the general consensus of this book and all of the others in the series is you either love it or you hate it. Of course, I have to be awkward and say that I am completely passive about this series of books.

The second in the series is City of Ashes. Originally I couldn’t even remember what had happened in this book and had to re-read the blurb and a synopsis online before I could refresh my memory: take that, as you will. It just goes to show that this is a building block in the series, a filler if you will, a book that needs to be there so the next makes sense but doesn’t really fulfil your needs. Clary and Jace’s ‘relationship’ makes me want to throw up, seriously that is messed up.

This book is a lot more fast paced than the first, I’ll give it that but then the first in a series of books is always fairly slow. Simon is really developing as a character now that he is a vampire. I feel as if the most disappointing character in the entire two books is Valentine; I am not scared of him, nor do I think he a very good villain, he’s by no means sneaky or conniving enough, considering he is supposed to be trying to overthrow the clave he’s pretty predictable. Villains in novels like Harry Potter, The Hunger Games even Twilight for goodness sake are characters that you fear and you are constantly worried for the character. You don’t know that everything will be solved and be okay but with this series you just know that they will sort everything out in a way that is so ridiculously simple its stupid.

Third is City of Glass, this is my favourite in the series. This shows the ‘gang’ going to Alicante to basically fight a war. Can I just remind you all that Clary is a non-trained Shadow Hunter with absolutely NO experience. Suddenly just because she can use Runes she is undefeatable and yet Jace, arguably the best Shadow Hunter there is gets killed, then brought back to life. Really? Oh and Valentine is defeated. Okay fine, I know this sounds like I am bashing the book but it was the best to read but possibly the one with the worst plot. So much happens that you’re left feeling like “what the hell just happened” and not in a good way. Also why is it that Clary always seems to be making out with people she thinks are her brothers? What is going on in the author’s mind?

The fourth book is City of Fallen Angels. This book is incredibly slow right until the very end when all the action happens within about 5 chapters. (that’s an estimate number, don’t quote me, but lets just say it wasn’t long enough and was squeezed into a ridiculously short space when it should have been the focus of the book). After the finishing the very last page you are left with the sentence on most people’s lips “seriously, are you being serious Clare? This is ridiculous”.

She should have stopped writing these books after City of Glass. It makes no sense to carry it on, the main villain is dead, and everything has been resolved. Why bring up a can of worms now? Clary and Jace’s relationship is again a huge source of annoyance for me but for a completely different reason than last time. This time is because it is foolish- they finally are able to have each other in a non-gross way and yet they find fault with each other and there’s yet another reason why they cant be together.

URGHHHHHHHHHH there are so many faults in these books. I haven’t read the fifth one, I have it waiting on my shelf but I don’t think it will be read any time soon. This is another case of what I was talking about here when the author wants to milk the story for as long as possible but in short she/he weakens the plot by doing so. I think that you should read these books and come to your own conclusion because apart from the fourth book, whilst I was reading, I was fairly happy with the story, its only when I sat down to write this review that I realised the faults with it. So my advice is to read them and never review them.

If you don’t want to take my view for this then I suggest you go on Goodreads and read the reviews left by others on there; there’s definitely some interesting ones on there for your entertainment.

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