Thursday, 17 May 2012

Review- City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments, #4)
The Mortal War is over, and sixteen-year-old Clary Fray is back home in New York, excited about all the possibilities before her. She's training to become a Shadowhunter and to use her unique power. Her mother is getting married to the love of her life. Downworlders and Shadowhunters are at peace at last. And - most importantly of all - she can finally call Jace her boyfriend.

But nothing comes without a price.

Someone is murdering Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine's Circle, provoking tensions between Downworlders and Shadowhunters that could lead to a second bloody war. Clary's best friend, Simon, can't help her. His mother just found out that he's a vampire and now he's homeless. Everywhere he turns, someone wants him on their side - along with the power of the curse that's wrecking his life. And they're willing to do anything to get what they want. At the same time he's dating two beautiful, dangerous girls - neither of whom knows about the other one.

When Jace begins to pull away from Clary without explaining why, she is forced to delve into the heart of a mystery whose solution reveals her worst nightmare: She herself has set in motion a terrible chain of events that could lead to her losing everything she loves. Even Jace.

Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge. The stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels.

(Cover and description taken from Goodreads)

Amazon UK

The start of a new trilogy and a continuation of the Mortal Instruments series, City of Fallen Angels picks up six weeks after City of Glass left off. Following the same characters we’ve come to love, this brilliant fourth instalment is the start of a whole new story, one that promises to be even darker than the previous books.

Training to be a Shadowhunter and finally able to call Jace her boyfriend, Clary is happy with her new life. But what she doesn’t know is that Jace is plagued by nightmares about hurting her, and because of this, begins to pull away from her. Meanwhile, Simon deals with being a vampire, unable to bring himself to consume human blood and unwilling to associate with others of his kind. He’s desperate for a normal life, but cannot deny that sooner or later he will have to embrace his new identity as an immortal bloodsucker. And make up his mind between the two girls he’s dating: Isabelle, the stunningly beautiful Shadowhunter, and Maia, the tough teenage werewolf. But Simon is no ordinary vampire: he is the Daylighter, the only vampire able to stand in direct sunlight, and this makes him a target for mysterious assassins, as well as the former head vampire in New York City, Camille. Unsure who to trust, Simon can only rely on the power of the mark Clary gave him to protect him, which returns any harm to him sevenfold upon the inflictor.

Meanwhile, dark plans are afoot. Someone is killing Shadowhunters, former Circle members, and there’s a creepy cult experimenting on children with demon blood. The Shadowhunters suspect that someone is trying to create another child like Jonathan, Clary’s brother, whom Jace killed- a Shadowhunter with demon blood in its veins, more monster than human. Jace finally confesses to Clary about the nightmares, and they start to think that something is manipulating him. But it may already be too late…

Dealing with the consequences of decisions made in City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels is a strong start to the new trilogy. We get to learn more about vampires, which in Clare’s books have a far from simple existence. Clare actually shows us the real consequences of immortality, through the characters of Magnus Bane, the 800-year-old warlock whom Alec fears will abandon him once he grows old; and Simon, who is forced to face the knowledge that he will stay sixteen forever whilst all his friends age. The one problem I had with the book is that not much happens in terms of plot development - it moves between characters a lot, but is less focused on action and more on the different characters' romantic entanglements. For some this might be a good thing, but I found myself getting a little impatient.

Whilst this doesn’t have quite the same impact as City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels sets up a strong basis for a new battle. The demons are restless, and a villain more evil even than Valentine waits in the wings. Will Clary and the others be able to thwart this new threat?

Rating: ***1/2*

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