Author: Cassandra Clare
Rating: 5/5 stars
This book is a young adult fantasy because it contains a variety of different supernatural beings and demon slaying teenagers and shadow-hunters. The story is about Clary Fray a teenage girl living in an apartment with her mom in Brooklyn. Clary’s life is turned upside down when her mother is kidnapped by some creature. From there Clary is dragged into the Shadow World to save her mother and everything she thought she knew about the world is challenged. The setting of modern-day Brooklyn affects the mood of the story. Countless times in the book the busy streets of Brooklyn or the dark alleyways are used for effect. The busy streets give the reader the sense of frustration or clutter. Here is a quote from the text on pg. 261; “Clary froze, staring into the shadows at the mouth of the alley. For a panicked moment she wondered if she’d imagined the voice.” In this quote the setting of the dark alleyway creates a mysterious and spooky tone, but this is only one of the many times the alleyways are used to that effect.
The story begins when Clary witnesses a murder by three teenagers with odd markings on their skin, who she later discovers are shadowhunters. As Clary learns a shadowhunter is a human with angel blood who is appointed the task of protecting humans from the Shadow World. Clary’s mom is kidnapped by the evil shadowhunter Valentine who seeks the Mortal Cup, a powerful weapon. She then meets one of the teenagers from the bar, Jace who helps her on her journey to rescue her mom. As the story progresses Jace and Clary grow closer and start to become more than just companions. Along the way, Clary learns that her mom was once a shadowhunter married to Valentine and she must find and protect the Mortal Cup if she wants her mom back. The turning point in the story is when Valentine shows up and takes the Cup and Jace. Clary seeks the help of Luke, a friend of her mother’s and werewolf, to find Jace and her mom. When she finds Valentine, Clary and Jace find out they are brother and sister which makes their feelings for each other even more confusing. At the last second Valentine escapes through a portal with the Mortal Cup, and Clary’s mother is left in a comatose. with the Mortal Cup, and Clary’s mother is left in a comatose.
In the end Clary learns that you have to accept who you are to feel complete. For her this meant she had to come to terms with her shadowhunter blood and face the fact that Jace is her brother. I know this is the theme because this scenario is shown more than once in the book and can be applied to the real world. Jace also fits the theme by accepting that his father is a villainous murder and that he is happier with Clary in his life.
The only things I disliked about the book were all the new terms. Each time the author brought up a new term relating to the setting of the story she wouldn’t go into detail about it. Instead I was left to come to my own conclusions about what the author meant. For example the Clave is a term commonly used. I assume that they are the rulers of the Shadow World, but I don’t know for sure. I recommend this great story to my friends or anyone else who has the same taste in books. I know they’ll love this book because we all share the common interest of an action-packed fantasy.
Contributed by Callie Cox