Cassandra Clare Strikes Again; The Book to Quell Your Mid-Summer Boredom

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past few years, you’ve probably heard of Cassandra Clare, the famous author of the award-winning Mortal Instruments series. Her novels have sold millions of copies worldwide and her first book, City of Bones, was made into a successful movie in 2013.  Now there’s even a TV show called Shadowhunters on Freeform that was inspired by Clare’s stories.


Just this past month, Cassandra Clare released Lord of Shadows, the second book in her Dark Artifices series.  This series is just one of the many spinoff series that Clare has written dealing with the shadowhunter universe.


The first book in the Dark Artifices series is titled Lady Midnight and was released in 2016.  Lord of Shadows picks off immediately where Lady Midnight left off, and it does not disappoint.  


Clare weaves an intricate web of characters and story lines to create a book that is truly remarkable in its complexity.  With multiple protagonists and interconnected relationships, Lord of Shadows manages to be entertaining and original without being cliché.  


The plot centers around a family of shadowhunters who are struggling to battle an evil force that is murdering members of the paranormal community.  Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorn are the main protagonists of the story, and their witty banter and easy communication makes the reader instantly fall in love with them.  With the help of their family, their runes, and their allies in the shadowhunter universe, The Blackthorn and Carstairs family battle against evil but also amongst themselves and the laws of their community. As the story progresses, the family dynamic of the main characters is revealed and the scope of the shadowhunter universe grows.  With trips into Faerie, battles against supernatural cults, and ritual sacrifice, the Dark Artifices trilogy never fails to grasp the reader’s attention.


If fantasy isn’t your thing, don’t worry.  With action-packed battles, complicated romance, witty comedy, and a plot centered around mystery, Clare’s book will appeal to all readers.


A possible deterrent to potential readers of this book is its length. At upwards of 700 pages, Lord of Shadows resembles more of an encyclopedia than a fantasy novel. However, as any fan of the Harry Potter books will know, just because a book is long does not mean that it’s boring, and Lord of Shadows is anything but.  


As I mentioned before, this series is a spinoff from Clare’s original shadow hunter series and therefore contains a few spoilers about major events in the original seven books.  However, if your not interested in reading the original shadowhunter books, the Dark Artifices series can be read by itself without any earlier context.  


If the mid-summer boredom is starting to kick in, you should definitely pick up Lady Midnight and Lord of Shadows.  I promise you that it won’t disappoint.