Thursday, 7 June 2012

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare

The demon Lilith has been destroyed and Jace has been freed from her captivity. But when the Shadowhunters arrive to rescue him, they find only blood and broken glass. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

No magic the Clave can summon can locate either boy, but Jace cannot stay away—not from Clary. When they meet again Clary discovers the horror Lilith’s dying magic has wrought—Jace is no longer the boy she loved. He and Sebastian are now bound to each other, and Jace has become what he most feared: a true servant of Valentine’s evil. The Clave is determined to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. Will the Shadowhunters hesitate to kill one of their own?

Only a small band of Clary and Jace’s friends and family believe that Jace can still be saved — and that the fate of the Shadowhunters’ future may hinge on that salvation. They must defy the Clave and strike out on their own. Alec, Magnus, Simon and Isabelle must work together to save Jace: bargaining with the sinister Faerie Queen, contemplating deals with demons, and turning at last to the Iron Sisters, the reclusive and merciless weapons makers for the Shadowhunters, who tell them that no weapon on this earth can sever the bond between Sebastian and Jace. Their only chance of cutting Jace free is to challenge Heaven and Hell — a risk that could claim any, or all, of their lives.

And they must do it without Clary. For Clary has gone into the heart of darkness, to play a dangerous game utterly alone. The price of losing the game is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she even still trust him? Or is he truly lost? What price is too high to pay, even for love?

So I was constantly hassling my friend to let me borrow her copy of this book whilst she was reading it (yes, I'm impatient), and as soon as she finished it, I already had it in my bag, awaiting to be started on the bus journey home. Although I've been avoiding reviews of this so as not to spoil anything, I have heard really good things about it, so I was pretty disappointed when I finished reading it.

First things first, I personally found this book heard to get into. Now I thought this was maybe just the mood I was in at the time, but in comparison to how enjoyable I found reading City of Bones, Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince, this did feel a bit like a chore - like I was dragging myself through it. A lot of it was interesting, and I did find myself wondering what was going to happen next - but that was considerably less than usual. Everyone knows that I am a mad Shadowhunter fan, and I always adore these books...but this one just didn't cut it.

One of the main reasons I didn't absolutely love this book was Sebastian. The bad guy always had to have a hint of creepiness about him, that I can completely agree with. But Sebastian...he's really creepy. He's incest creepy. If he wasn't related to Clary, I suppose I could understand him kissing her and trying to get into her pants. But he is. He is her brother. And therefore, it just makes it stupidly uncomfortable to read. And I know some of you will think, but in City of Glass, Clary and Jace thought they were related yet their making out wasn't that uncomfortable. Personally, I still found that uncomfortable, but I think everyone knew that deep down, they weren't related. Jace was obviously the heartthrob, that would just lessen the appeal of the series. But with Sebastian, there isn't a chance of that. Which is what makes it really awkward.

To be honest, I do want to give this a good review, because I love The Mortal Instruments series. But I felt this novel didn't do this series justice. Most people know how I feel about brilliant series that just continue on and on until they ruin themselves, and although this hasn't knocked my faith in the series, part of me wishes it had been tied up at City of Glass, because that would have made this an amazing trilogy. But, it wasn't, and admittedly part of me is worried that the series won't end on the last book - that something will be left out once more, and it will continue on and will just lose what made it unique and special in the first place. I am really torn between giving this a rating of 3.5, because I am honestly torn between the two, but I think it will have to be a 4, because overall it is an amazing series. Although I didn't give it much praise, the book is good, and I continue to love the storyline between Simon and Isabelle, and Jordan and Maia. If you haven't yet read this series, I definitely recommend it.
Rating: 4/5

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