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The Mortal Instruments Book 6: City of Heavenly Fire

City of heavently fire    The Mortal Instruments Book 6: City of Heavenly Fire

                                              

City of Heavenly Fire is the sixth and final book in The Mortal Instruments series, along with City of Bones, City of Ashes, City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels, and City of Lost Souls. It is set in Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter universe, along with The Infernal Devices series.

The Mortal Instruments was originally a trilogy consisting of City of Bones, City of Ashes, and City of Glass. It was later expanded into a sextet once Clare decided to expand the Shadowhunter world into several trilogies. The Infernal Devices is a spin off trilogy set in the 1800s and ties into The Mortal Instruments at times.

There are also two more upcoming spin off trilogies: The Dark Artifices, consisting of Lady Midnight (which comes out Fall 2015), The Prince of Shadows, and The Queen of Air and Darkness, and, The Last Hours trilogy, consisting of Chain of Thorns, Chain of Gold, and Chain of Iron, which will publish as a tie in series with The Dark Artifices. The publish order is as follows:

DA: Lady Midnight (Fall 2015)

LH: Chain of Thorns

DA: The Prince of Shadows

LH: Chain of Gold

DA: The Queen of Air and Darkness

LH: Chain of Iron

When I was looking around the website, I found something called The Secret Treasons, which looks like it might be another book or trilogy, but I didn’t find any other information about it other than the name.

There are also three companion books: one of which is a companion guide to the Shadowhunter world: The Shadowhunter Codex, which came out in 2013. There is also Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments Guide, which contains essays written by several other prominent YA authors, including Holly Black (one of the writers of the Spiderwick Chronicles and the author the Modern Tales of Faerie series, which has been featured on this blog), Rachel Caine (author of The Morgansville Vampires series), and Kami Garcia (author of the Beautiful Creatures series).

Also, there is a series of short stories written by Cassandra Clare and some of her writer friends available on eBook called The Bane Chronicles. This series stars one of the most popular character in the series, Magnus Bane. A printed collection of the stories will hit be available this November, and will be featured on this blog.

Finally, Clare and her friend she has co-written before, Holly Black, known best for The Spiderwick Chronicles, are working on another set of books, The Magisterium Series, the first of which comes out September 9th, 2014. I haven’t decided if I’m going to review it yet, but I am at least going to take a look at it.

 

The book opens with the introduction of the major players of The Dark Artifices series, Emma Carstairs and Jules Blackthorn, who are currently about 12 years old. They live with their parents at the Los Angeles Institute when they get attacked by Sebastian Morganstern and his army of Dark Shadowhunters. Emma and Jules escape with Jules younger siblings, but their parents are killed and Jules’ half-fae older brother gets taken by the Wild Hunt, a group of faeries that exist outside the Courts.

This is one of the first of Sebastian Morganstern’s, the main bad guy of this part of the series and the protagonist’s evil older brother, attacks on the Nephilim (also called Shadowhunters). He completely decimates the Institutes, and anyone he doesn’t kill is forced to join his army of Dark Shadowhunters, who fights with infernal magic instead of divine magic like normal Shadowhunters. It is also very clear that he has very powerful demons on his side

Not only that, but Sebastian has also started to attack any Downworlder (fae, werewolves, vampires, and warlocks allies of the Shadowhunters, which starts to damage the already turmulous peace between the Downworlders and the Shadowhunters, as some Downworlders are starting to think that siding against the Nephilim may be best for them.

Shortly after one of his attacks, Sebastian Morganstern gives the Shadowhunter Clave a message: he will stop the attacks against them, if they hand over Clary and her boyfriend, Jace Lightwood, who was raised by Sebastian and Clary’s birth father, Valentine, who was the main villain in the first trilogy, over to him.

The Clave isn’t inclined to sacrificed their non-adult members to sociopaths, which means that it’s up to Clary, Jace, and their friends to figure out how to defeat Sebastian before he completely obliterates their people.

In the sixth and final installment of The Mortal Instruments series, the beloved characters must travel to the most unlikeliest of places, face dangerous foes, and most terrifyingly of all, talk to each other about their feelings. Long time readers will not want to miss this dynamite ending to a pretty good urban fantasy.

 

This is probably Clare’s best to date. There were many twists and turns, and the ending felt much more satisfying than the original ending in City of Glass. We got closure for many of the beloved characters of the series, particularly Alec Lightwood and Magnus Bane. City of Glass ended with Alec finally coming to terms with his sexuality and his relationship with Magnus Bane, which was a great ending for his story arc, but his character and their relationship is much more fleshed out in the second story arc and deals with the downsides of falling in love with someone who is immortal.

Also, Isabelle Lightwood’s, Alec’s younger sister, is much more fleshed out in the second arc. For most of the first arc, she was pretty much a decent supporting character, and was very much in the background. In the more recent books her relationship with Simon has been a major plot line, along with her dealing with some of the emotional baggage brought on by her parent’s dissolving relationship and the death of her younger brother by the hands of Sebastian.

All in all, it was a very good end to a very good series. To be honest, the first trilogy can be cringe worthy at times, but the second trilogy is really where the good points shine through. You probably could read the second trilogy on its own, though you would miss the introductions to many of the major players of the series and the world the series takes place. Also, you technically don’t have to read The Infernal Devices to keep up with the plot, though I do recommend it since there are some characters crossover from one series to the other.

One thing City of Heavenly Fire did that the books before it did not was integrate the characters of the next story arc fully into the current story arc. Emma and Jules, the main characters of The Dark Artifices

Rating: 9 out of 10.

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The Infernal Devices Series: The Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

The Clockwork Prince   The Infernal Devices Series: The Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

 

The Clockwork Prince is the second book in The Infernal Devices trilogy, along with The Clockwork Angel and The Clockwork Princess, which came out last year. It is the second trilogy set in Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter universe, also featured in The Mortal Instruments series.

The Mortal Instruments was originally a trilogy consisting of City of Bones, City of Ashes, and City of Glass. However, it was later expanded into a sextet, with City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, and City of Heavenly Fire, which is currently out to the public. (Note: Since I don’t have a lot of money right now, I haven’t been able to buy it and read it.)

There are also two more upcoming spin off trilogies: The Dark Artifices, consisting of Lady Midnight (which comes out in 2015), The Prince of Shadows, and The Queen of Air and Darkness, and, finally, The Last Hours series, which will come out sometime in the next few years.

There are also three companion books: one of which is a companion guide to the Shadowhunter world: The Shadowhunter Codex, which came out in 2013. There is also Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments Guide, which contains essays written by several other prominent YA authors, including Holly Black (one of the writers of the The Spiderwick Chronicles and the author the Modern Tales of Faerie series, which has been featured on this blog), Rachel Caine (author of The Morgansville Vampires series), and Kami Garcia (author of the Beautiful Creatures series).

Finally, there is a series of short stories available on ebook called The Bane Chronicles. This series stars one of the most popular character in the series, Magnus Bane. A printed collection of the stories will hit be available this November.

 

The Clockwork Angel ended on a cliffhanger, in which Will Herondale, a surly and secretive, young Shadowhunter, showing up at Magnus Bane’s door, asking for help. The Clockwork Prince opens with Will picking up supplies for whatever Magnus agreed to do for him, which seems to involve summoning demons.

Later he meets up with his best friend, Jem Carstairs, and Tessa Gray, a young woman who has the ability to change into anyone she wants to, to the Clave meeting.

After the events of the last book, Charlotte Branwell, the young lady who runs the London Institute, is being placed under judgement by the Counsel of Shadowhunters. However, Benedict Lightwood interrupts to challenge Charlotte for the position of the head of the Institute. Basically, if she and her charges do not find a good lead on the wearabouts of Mortmain, a mundane with a specific grudge on Shadowhunters, and who tricked Charlotte into trusting him in The Clockwork Angel, in the next two weeks, the London Institute gets handed over to the Lightwoods.

Additionally, the Council demanded that Tessa and Sophie, a maid with the Sight, should be trained to fight by Lightwood’s two sons, Gideon and Gabriel, in case of another attack by Mortmain.

After that, it’s a race against the clock to try and find Mortmain. Tensions are high and Tessa struggles with the mystery of who she is and the betrayal of her brother, Nate. With many twists and turns, and even more automatons, we learn much more about the politics involved with the Shadowhunter world.

 

Shadowhunter families are typically very old, and tend to branch gernerations. Because of that, one of the fun parts of reading this series after The Mortal Instruments is seeing the different families over the years. For example, some of the main antagonists is the Lightwood family, who are some of the main protagonists in The Mortal Instruments. Every once in a while a name will pop up that and I’ll go “ohh h hey that’s so and so’s ancestor”.

Also, this series has a more interesting villain than the first half of The Mortal Instruments series. Valentine was your basic super racist, tyranical villain who fully believed that his genocidal intentions were the best way to go about saving the world. While those are perfectly fine, there’s just something about a villain that seems to always be a few steps ahead of the heroes, whose so sneaky and so manipulative, that you have no idea what he’s going to do next.

That really is the difference between The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices is that for the most part, the first half of The Mortal Instruments who were fairly predictable, which made them really good guilty pleasure books, but nothing really special. The Infernal Devices, on the other hand, is just a pretty good mystery. The world is fun, the story is good, and the characters are fairly likable. I am a big fan of these books, and am excited about reading the last book.

 

Rating: 8 out of 10.

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The Infernal Devices Book 1: The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

The Clockwork Angel   The Infernal Devices Book 1: The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

 

The Clockwork Angel is the first book in The Infernal Devices trilogy, followed by The Clockwork Prince and The Clockwork Princess, which came out last year. It is the second trilogy set in Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter universe, the first being The Mortal Instruments series.

The Mortal Instruments was originally a trilogy consisting of City of Bones, City of Ashes, and City of Glass. However, it was later expanded into a sextet, with City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, and City of Heavenly Fire, which comes out later this month.

There are also two more upcoming spin off trilogies: The Dark Artifices, consisting of Lady Midnight (which comes out in 2015), The Prince of Shadows, and The Queen of Air and Darkness, and, finally, The Last Hours series, which will come out sometime in the next few years.

There are also three companion books: one of which is a companion guide to the Shadowhunter world: The Shadowhunter Codex, which came out in 2013. There is also Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments Guide, which contains essays written by several other prominent YA authors, including Holly Black (one of the writers of the The Spiderwick Chronicles and the author the Modern Tales of Faerie series, which has been featured on this blog), Rachel Caine (author of The Morgansville Vampires series), and Kami Garcia (author of the Beautiful Creatures series).

Finally, there is a series of short stories available on ebook called The Bane Chronicles. This series stars one of the most popular character in the series, Magnus Bane. A printed collection of the stories will hit be available this November.

 

The Clockwork Angel takes place in19th century London, and the main protagonist, the orphaned Tessa Gray, just came off the boat from New York to meet her brother Nathan. However, it appears that Nathan has sent two friends to pick her up, the mysterious Dark Sisters.

Though at first the Dark Sisters seem nice, Tessa quickly finds out that they are less interested in her well being, and more interested in forcing Tessa to her formerly dormant power to shapeshift for their own gains. After weeks in the care of the Dark Sisters, Tessa is rescued by a group of Shadowhunters.

She is brought to the London Institute, which is run by Charlotte Branwell, and her inventor husband, Henry Branwell. Tessa also meets Will Herondale, young man who seems to strive to alienate all those around him, Will’s best friend Jem Carstairs, a very calm and quiet young man, and Jessamine Lovelace, a girl of Shadowhunter blood who really doesn’t want to be a Shadowhunter.

With the help of her new friends, Tessa solves the mystery of her brother’s dissaperence and its relevance to the mysterious Pandemonium Club. The story is filled with twists and turns, and Tessa finds out more about herself and the Shadow World around her.

 

The Clockwork Angel is the first book Clare wrote after the end of the first half of The Mortal Instruments sextet, and Clare’s writing growth is evident. The characters have more depth, the backgrounds and visuals are… simple, and the main mystery is much more interesting.

This series takes place right after the Accords, a series of treaties between the Shadowhunters and the Downworlders (vampires, werewolves, warlocks, and faeries) that keeps the two sides from going after each other. The deal is if the Downworlders don’t go around killing regular humans, then the Shadowhunters can’t kill Downworlders for no reason. A big part of the book is seeing how both sides react to the Accords, as there are Downworlders who find living under the close watch of the Shadowhunters distasteful at best, and the Shadowhunters who just can’t seem to consider the other side actual people.

There are also mentions of the place of women in Shadowhunter society, particularly when the story focuses on Charlotte, who’s status as the caretaker of the London Institute is constantly under question as the older and often male Shadowhunters would rather listen to her husband. It’s also addressed with Jessamine, who was brought up to think a lady behaves in a certain way and would do anything to get away from the dangerous and often bloody life of the Shadowhunters.

I thought this book was fantastic, and for those that might be uncomfortable with some of the plotlines in The Mortal Instruments might have a better time with The Infernal Devices. Also: Steampunk. There’s a whole lot of steampunk, and it’s pretty fantastic.

 

Rating: 8 of 10.

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The Mortal Instruments Book 3: City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

City_of_glass    The Mortal Instruments Book 3: City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

City of Glass is the third book in the six book Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. The sextet is actually comprised of two trilogies, the first consisting of City of Bones, City of Ashes, and City of Glass; and the second trilogy comprising of City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, and City of Heavenly Fire, which comes out this May.

There is also a spin off trilogy called The Infernal Devices, consisting of The Clockwork Angel, The Clockwork Prince, and The Clockwork Princess, which came out earlier this year. There are also two more upcoming spin off trilogies: The Dark Artifices, consisting of Lady Midnight (which comes out in 2015), The Prince of Shadows, and The Queen of Air and Darkness, and, finally, The Last Hours series.

My original plan was to try to review both of the Mortal Instruments trilogies and the Infernal Devices trilogy before the City of Heavenly Fire comes out, but due to scheduling conflicts and finals coming so very, terribly fast, it does not appear that that is going to happen. Instead, I’ll just write about City of Fallen Angels and City of Lost Souls right beforehand, and write on the Infernal Devices afterwards.

There are also three companion books: one of which is a companion guide to the Shadowhunter world: The Shadowhunter Codex, which came out in 2013. There is also Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments Guide, which contains essays written by several other prominent YA authors, including Holly Black (one of the writers of the The Spiderwick Chronicles and the author the Modern Tales of Faerie series, which has been featured on this blog), Rachel Caine (author of The Morgansville Vampires series), and Kami Garcia (author of the Beautiful Creatures series).

Finally, there is a series of short stories available on ebook called The Bane Chronicles. This series stars one of the most popular character in the series, Magnus Bane. A printed collection of the stories will hit be available this November.

 

City of Ashes ended with Valentine Morganstern, the big bad guy of the book, gaining control of the second mortal instrument, the Mortal Sword. Between that and the Mortal Cup he stole in the first book, he’s pretty much prepared to take over the Shadowhunter Clave and eradicate anyone he deems inferior to his kind, i.e. everyone not purely Shadowhunter.

In addition, his daughter, Clary, the main protagonist, has been approached by a woman named Madeline, who claims to know how to wake her mother up from her coma. The only thing is, they have to get to Alicante, the main Shadowhunter city, to perform the spell. Clary, along with Jace Wayland, her supposed brother, and his adopted family, the Lightwoods, are supposed to leave that evening.

Except Jace, in an attempt to keep Clary out of danger, lied to her about the departure time and right before they left, tried to make her best friend and vampire, Simon, a part of the lie to protect her.   Unfortunately, the demons attacked the group right before they left, thus killing Madeline and forcing Simon to escape to Alicante.

Only problem is, Downworlders (vampires, werewolves, faeries, and warlocks) are not allowed in Alicante, which means trouble for Simon. It also doesn’t take Clary much time to realize what has happened and to force herself into the action any way possible. When Jace rejects her, she turns to trust another Shadowhunter she meets, named Sebastian Verlac, as she tries to save her mother and keep her father from using the demons to take over their world.

The first time I read this, I was worried over how it would tie together, but I think it did nicely. As with City of Ashes, I spent most of the book more interested in side plots, but the main plot eventually became interesting enough that it got most of my attention in the end. All in all, it was a good end to the series.

Which is kind of funny, considering there ended up being more installments, but it was a nice end to this part of the series. I think Clare’s main strength is her growth and development of characters, while sometimes her writing style and pacing can get a little…. flowery. Then again, one might not consider that a bad thing.

I consider this a good brain candy read, it’s not too complicated, but the story is interesting enough for a good break during the day. (Which was great for me, considering I am also reading House of Leaves and John Dies at the End, both of which require a good bit of concentration and brain power.) This is one my favorite guilty pleasures, and I do recommend it for someone who wants to try a take on the ever popular genre that is YA Paranormal Romance.

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The Mortal Instruments: Book 1: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

 

City of BonesThe Mortal Instruments: Book 1: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
City of Bones is the first book in the six book Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. This is also the first published work by Cassandra Clare. There were originally supposed to be three books, City of Ashes and City of Glass in this series, however, Clare has written a second trilogy, City of Fallen Angels and City of Lost Souls, with the final book, City of Heavenly Fire, which comes out in 2014.
There is also a spin off trilogy called The Infernal Devices, consisting of The Clockwork Angel, The Clockwork Prince, and The Clockwork Princess, which came out earlier this year. There are also two more upcoming spin off trilogies: The Dark Artifices, consisting of Lady Midnight (which comes out in 2015), The Prince of Shadows, and The Queen of Air and Darkness, and a yet unnamed series which I assume will come out after The Dark Artifices.
There are also three companion books: one of which is a companion guide to the Shadowhunter world: The Shadowhunter Codex, which came out in 2013. There is also Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments Guide, which contains essays written by several other prominent YA authors, including Holly Black (one of the writers of the The Spiderwick Chronicles and the author the Modern Tales of Faerie series, which has been featured on this blog), Rachel Caine (author of The Morgansville Vampires series), and Kami Garcia (author of the Beautiful Creatures series).
Finally, there is a series of short stories available on ebook called The Bane Chronicles, which was originally a set of ebook short stories, and will be put together into a printed collection that comes out this November. This series stars one of the most popular character in the series, Magnus Bane.
Ok wow, there’s a whole lot of books in this series. Let’s talk about the actual book.

City of Bones starts off with the main character, Clary Fray, a fifteen year old artist who lives with her single mother in New York city, and her best friend Simon Lewis going into 16 and up club. While she is there she sees three teenagers dressed all in black with weird tattoos follow lure another teen to the back of the club.
Suspicious, Clary follows them, just in time to see them murder the teen- except when they do, the body dissapears in a puff of smoke. The teenagers (Jace Wayland, Alec Lightwood, and his sister, Isabelle Lightwood) Also, when she tries to call security, she finds that she is the only one who can see them.
Simon and Clary leave, with Clary hoping to forget about what happened. However, when her mother is kidnapped by a demon, she is forced into the world of the Shadowhunters- a world filled with mystery and danger.

I’m going to be honest here- this is one of my favorite books. It can be a little cheesy at times, but it makes up for it with really compelling characters and imaginative world.
That being said, there is a really big secret twist at the end of this book. So far I’ve noticed that there are typically two reactions to it: either one runs out to get the next one, or they just kind of go “well… ok then” and don’t continue the series.
That being said, I really recommend this book for anyone who wants something a little different from the usual teen supernatural fare.
There is also a movie adaptation based on City of Bones that came out last August. It was… not very good, and I don’t think there will be any more adaptations of the series in the upcoming future.

Rating: 7 out of 10.

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