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

9781416972242_p0_v3_s260x420

Title:  City of Glass
Author:  Cassandra Clare
Publisher/Year:  Margaret K. McElderry Books 8/3/10
Length:  576 Pages
Series: The Mortal Instruments #3

Overview 

To save her mother’s life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters—never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family’s past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he’s willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City—whatever the cost?

Love is a mortal sin and the secrets of the past prove deadly as Clary and Jace face down Valentine in the third installment of bestselling series the Mortal Instruments.

Includes an exclusive sneak peek of the fourth book in the Mortal Instruments series: City of Fallen Angels! And don’t miss the teaser from Clockwork Angel, the first book in the Infernal Devices trilogy, the prequel to the Mortal Instruments series.

 

ssandra Clare
Publisher/Year:  Margaret K. McElderry Books 8/3/10
Length:  576 Pages
Series: The Mortal Instruments #3

Overview 

 

i’m definitely a happy girl when after a few books into a series and i’m losing faith a little bit that a story line comes out that reminds me why i was keeping at it.  book 3 in The Mortal Instruments does just that.  Cassandra Clare brings us to the home world of the ShadowHunters so we can really deal with some strife.  (yes i used the word strife)

so in this story, we’re still focused on Jace and Clary, and Simon has a big part as does Luke.  We’re left wondering if Clary will be able to save her mother from the spell that she put on herself as protection against Valentine…and then there’s Valentine.  Such a nice name, yet such a nasty person.

so…we start off the story basically with Jace trying to trick Clary into not being able to get to Idris to track down the warlock that can help her mom.  Simon’s dragged into it (in more ways than 1) and then, Clary some how manages to get herself there.

lots of battles ensure, and we’re introduced to a few new folks:

Sebastian – he’s the cousin of the people that the Lightwoods are staying with, yet everyone seems to think that there’s ‘something’ off about him, but can’t quite put their finger on it.  read on in the story and you’ll figure that one out .

Aline – the daughter of the family that the Lightwoods are staying with who sort of makes a play for Jace, but as you read you find out more about that one

a return of Maia which is always nice – kind of like this chick – she’s helpful and turns up when you least expect it and i feel like there’s so much more we could do with her.  maybe she’ll become more important in the following books.

we’re also introduced to the Fairies (for the most part) and the Seelie Queen is an interesting one.  she speaks in riddles and makes you think about things, yet you do and don’t want her thoughts to come true.  again, you’d have to read to get where i’m going with this.

GOOD NEWS here, is that a few of the questions that i had at the end of Book 2 (City of Ashes) get answered in a pleasing way.  now i have a few more:

1) do we think that what the Seelie Queen says about Jace and Clary will be the truth?

2) what’s going to happen with Simon – now that we know he’s a daylighter – what does that do for him

3) what role will Jocelyn (and Luke) have in the future since we know that Joce is really a key player in a lot of different ways

4) what’s going on with Jace?  i mean really?

so – i’ll keep reading because i’m happy to say that this book was really good – and the next 2 hopefully will be just as good.  What i just learned though is that i should also be reading Clockwork Angel and that series since it’s kind of parallel with similar characters.  too bad i didn’t know that before.  wonder what i’ve missed….

Review: City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments Book 2) by Cassandra Clare

9781416972242_p0_v3_s260x420

Title:  City of Ashes
Author:  Cassandra Clare
Publisher/Year:  Margaret K. McElderry Books 3/24/09
Length:  496 Pages
Series: The Mortal Instruments #2

Overview 

Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what’s normal when you’re a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who’s becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn’t ready to let her go—especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary’s only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil—and also her father.

To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings—and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?

In this breathtaking sequel to City of Bones, Cassandra Clare lures her readers back into the dark grip of New York City’s Downworld, where love is never safe and power becomes the deadliest temptation.

My Thoughts

so here we are again, dropped into the intriguing world of Jace and Clary.  I’m trying here – really i am to follow what’s going on – and as much as i’m not LOVING the series, i still find myself drawn to it.

We have our same usual suspects in this story with some interesting turns of events coming out.  Folks that we really liked are no longer players, others come to the forefront.  We’re still trying to figure out what’s going on between Jace and Clary if there is anything (or can be anything).

In City of Ashes – we get to know Valentine a little bit better.  we know that he’s really really dark – and he’s trying to use the Soul-Sword to turn things around so that the sword has a demonic tone vs. the angelic one that it has now.  He’s just evil…plain and simple.  I don’t know about anyone else though, but i kind of wonder if Valentine isn’t who he says he is….just a thought that i’m having given that everyone else seems to be someone else as well.

So in this story we get to know Maia a bit more – she’s a werewolf that’s park of Luke’s pack – and she certainly gets dragged into things that she’s not interested in.  i.e. being almost killed a few times by Valentine’s demons since her young blood is needed

Simon continues to play a large role – becoming less than human himself and some how managing to hang on even though his blood is deemed to be necessary by Valentine as well.  It’s interesting here though in his relationship with Clary.  We usually encounter the best girl/guy friend thing that doesn’t turn into romance, yet in this story, their relationship kind of takes that turn.  I have my own opinions – your thoughts?

so craziness ensues – people fight/get killed.  we’re introduced FINALLY to Robert and Maryse Lightwood which is nice since i always kind of wondered what was going on there and if we’d actually like the parents.  We meet Imogen the Inquisitor – and then maybe un-meet her?

so here are a few things i’m thinking about – hopefully none of them are spoilers:

1) Anyone else get the feeling that Jace isn’t ‘Jonathan’ – but instead Imogen’s son?  i don’t recall that they ever found the body of her son, and she did ask him about a scar that he got on his shoulder.  I wonder what she said to him on Valentine’s boat too.  Will Jace remember that?

2) Will Alec and Magnus ever actually get together?  i actually really really like them as a couple.  they are cute…and seem like they are well suited.

3) What’s next for Jace and Clary?  I know that certain things happened at the end of this book that i won’t go into – but i really wonder.  The whole episode with the Fairies in City of Ashes makes me think that what i hope will happen will happen, but i’m keeping myself from reading the back covers of the next few books so that i’m not jumping ahead

4) will jocelyn wake up and who will have a role in helping with that if it does?  if she does wake up, will she help fight Valentine, will she end up with Luke?

good news here is that i’ve already picked up City of Glass and i started it last night, so hopefully in the next day or so i’ll have some of my questions answered and then i’ll be forced to begin reading City of Angels which i think is the next one after that.

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

One of the best things about reconnecting with family is realizing that they have similar interests as you.  This is one of the things that i’ve uncovered in reconnecting with one of my cousins over the past few months.  many of my new book reads are as a result of her recommendations and this is just another one of them.

It’s been a little while since i’ve come across a good dystopian style book, and this story was definitely a great read.  such a great read that i read it all in one night…so i’m pretty pleased with both the book and myself.

We’re introduced to Elliot  who is our lead character – and she’s yes she’s our lead female.  basically, her family is supposed to be the hgh society equivelant, in a society where those who thought they were equal to or better than god were ‘reduced’.  so her family is one of the powerful ones, that’s managed to last over the years, lording over their own group of Reduced and Posts.  Elliot of course has a better ‘inside’ than her sister and father (her mother passed away of course), and wants to do things to better the lives of those ‘below’ her vs. just trying to do for herself.

Kai – or Malakai is Elliot’s best friend growing up, a Post himself, and well – a runaway who found himself a better life.  sort of.  These 2 grew up as friends, ended up loving each other some how, but of course when Kai decided to leave to find a better life for himself, Elliot couldn’t and wouldn’t leave…which is where their big devide came.

so…without giving away too much, Elliot’s family is now bordering on not having enough to sustain their land and the people who live on it, Elliot does a little science work to develop wheat that can over produce and sustain, issues arise with that (mostly because that’s kind of what killed society in the first place, thinking that you could play god and create things that were better than what was already around).

Kai comes back to ‘town’ becuase he’s working for the INNOVATIONS – who some how manage to bring back some of the most amazing things and discover some of the most amazing lands during a time when such a thing isn’t possible

there are twists and turns, unrequited love among Elliot and Kai, and then endings that you don’t necessarily count on.  it’s a great spin on dystopian, and i kind of wish as i often do with stories like this that we had more of a back story  but all in all a GREAT read.  It’s also kind of based on Persuasion by Jane Austen so yet another reason to read…

Onyx by Jennifer L Armentrout

Long awaited but well worth it.  that’s my first thought about this story – book 3 (sort of) in the Lux series.  Touted as Book 2 because there was a prequel, but to me it’s book 3.  in any event, we’re brought back into the world of Katy and Daemon and pick up right where we last left them

they had fought Arum and won – Daemon (a Luxen) some how managed to heal Katy (a human) when she almost died trying to protect Daemon in a power struggle with the bad guys.

so….here we are with Katy (a.k.a. kitten) and Daemon – still ‘connected’ to each other some how, and yet still trying to fight it.  oh how surprising is that?

we’re introduced to a new character in this story:

Blake – he’s the new kid in town, and of course that makes things fun given that Katy was the new kid at the onset of the series.  Blake is the surfer kid – good looking and mysterious because no one knows much about it.  of course he and Katy have some type of instant connection (enter the love triangle).

what happens from that – well – you’ll have to read the story to find out – but just know that Blake makes Daemon’s green eyed monster (sorry for the pun since he DOES have green eyes) come out – and well, Katy sort of has to choose.

As i was reading the story – i had my suspicions on how it was going to end up, and for the most part i was right.  i didn’t quite guess all the twists and turns which actually makes me really happy.  there were some unexpected happy things and a few unexpected SAD SAD things – but all in all – this was a good follow up and i can’t wait until OPAL comes out.  DECEMBER 11, 2012 – that’s what i’m reading now as the release date so 5 more months to wait….hopefully i can bide my time with another one of the amazing Jennifer L Armentrout’s series.

Review: City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare

9781416972242_p0_v3_s260x420

Title:  City of Bones
Author:  Cassandra Clare
Publisher/Year:  Margaret K. McElderry Books 2/19/08
Length:  512 Pages
Series: The Mortal Instruments #1

Overview

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder—much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It’s hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing—not even a smear of blood—to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary’s first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It’s also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know…

Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare’s ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.

My Thoughts 

for the longest time i’ve seen the covers to the books in this series and had been on the fence about reading them.  Well, i finally decided that it was about time and I’m not quite sure that it was worth the wait.  there are a few reasons for this.

1) i’m one of those people that if a books is really good, i’ll read it cover to cover (e-book style) in one night.  that didn’t happen here.  as a matter of fact it took me maybe 3-4 days to read it, and it’s partly because i was ‘ok’ with putting it down, and partly because well…life just kind of got in the way last week.

2) I wasn’t quite sure where the story was going for the longest time and it wasn’t until some of the last chapters that i was actually getting into it more – so i felt a little cheated for a few days

in any event, here’s the lowdown:

Clary (Clarissa) is our heroine in the story.  She’s you’re average 15 yr old living in Brooklyn.  (or so she thinks).  her mom is an artist and her dad died before she was born i think.  she has a best friend named Simon who of course is in love with her yet she doesn’t see it.  We are introduced to Clary one night when she decides that she needs to go to this cool club, and while she’s there, she comes across a whole syfy world. demons, ‘shadow hunters’ – the whole nine yards

Jace is our lead guy in this story – he’s a shadow hunter who for some reason keeps creeping up on Clary when she first meets him, and then turns out to be her guide and touch stone for all things super natural.

of course there’s a cast of supporting folks, Simon as i mentioned (non-supernatural), Isabelle, Alec and Hodge (super natural), Valentine (so not romantic and sweet- VERY EVIL) and well…the list goes on and on.

I’m kind of at a lost now of what to expect of the next story since there were things that i really wanted to see happen in this first book that didn’t but i guess that’s kind of the allure of a decent author right?  that you think one thing will happen and then something completely different does.  Without giving it away – that’s kind of what happened here.

i’m off to track down book 2 now…

Review: Gabriel’s Inferno (Gabriel’s Inferno #1) by Sylvain Reynard

9780062243478_p0_v2_s260x420

 

Title:  Gabriel’s Inferno
Author: Sylvain Reynard
Publisher/Year:  Penguin Group (USA) 9/4/12
Length:  560 pages
Series: Gabriel’s Inferno #1

Overview

From national bestselling author Sylvain Reynard comes the haunting, unforgettable tale of one man’s salvation and one woman’s sensual awakening . . .

Enigmatic and sexy, Professor Gabriel Emerson is a well-respected Dante specialist by day, but by night he devotes himself to an uninhibited life of pleasure. He uses his notorious good looks and sophisticated charm to gratify his every whim, but is secretly tortured by his dark past and consumed by the profound belief that he is beyond all hope of redemption.

When the sweet and innocent Julia Mitchell enrolls as his graduate student, his attraction and mysterious connection to her not only jeopardizes his career, but sends him on a journey in which his past and his present collide.

An intriguing and sinful exploration of seduction, forbidden love, and redemption, Gabriel’s Inferno is a captivating and wildly passionate tale of one man’s escape from his own personal hell as he tries to earn the impossible—forgiveness and love.

My Thoughts

alas i’ve found myself back into a ‘romance’ inspired series, but i have to say that i left these 2 books significantly more intelligent than i went in.  with Book 1’s title Gabriel’s Inferno, i had visions of Dante’s inferno, and i was completely on target with that one. it’s really nice to read a story that has as much passion and depth as a dante inspiration.  i also love that we’re immediately introduced to the characters as the modern Dante and Beatrice.

so here’s how it shakes down:

Gabriel – he is our brooding male lead, also known as ‘Professor’.  he’s young, handsome, powerful, smart, and well of course very very troubled.  He’s got a past that we don’t actually get the entire picture of even through both Gabriel’s Inferno or Gabriel’s Rapture.  we get a glimpse, but not the whole story.  he’s adopted, troubled, and tries to turn his life around – question is – does he succeed?  that’s why you must read.

Julia is our female lead – and the girl that we always want to root for in these types of stories.  she’s very innocent of course, and even a virgin (big surprise there right?) but she comes into her own skin as these stories progress.  We know that her life wasn’t the easiest as she was growing up either, and that’s kind of what shapes her whole story.

interesting fun facts that we find out in book 1:

1) Gabriel and Julia met when she was 17…..because her best friend is Gabriel’s brother.  but….Gabriel has no idea who she is when she turns up in his graduate level seminar.  reason?  (you must read to find out)

2) Gabriel has a tattoo over his heart with initials or a name…what’s the story there…and how does that relate to the ‘bursary’ that he bestows on Julia when he tries to help her out financially?

Gabriel’s Inferno brings these characters together through a bit of a round about way.  she enrolls in his class, and he doesn’t know who she is at first…and of course she won’t tell him.  it takes his sister/her best friend visiting to uncover some of that….yet – it’s still not that easy.  we know that Julia is in love with him, and has been for years, but does that ever get resolved?

Gabriel’s Rapture – book 2 takes us on a continuation of their tale, picking up at a really juicy spot actually.  and i’m not saying juicy from a sexual aspect.  there’s a lot going on that book 2 does a really good job talking about.

**potential spoiler alert**

so we know from the first book that there’s an issue with professor/student relationships and we’re waiting for the other shoe to drop all book 1.  we find that to some extend the shoe drops in book 2 – but how and how does that effect each of the characters?

what i lOVED about Gabriel’s Rapture is that it took you in a direction that you expect, but the story there is so unexpected.  i’m used to things being tied up in a nice little bow right off the bat and in this case, you’re really forced to keep from skipping to the end of the book to find the resolution since there’s so much greatness going on with both Gabriel and Julia separately.

anyway – i read that there may be a book 3 in the works and if that’s true then i’m thrilled.  Professor and the Student really were great at drawing me in, and i can’t wait to hear more of their tale