First Lines: “I’m afraid,” said the little girl sitting on the bed. “Grandfather, can you stay with me?”
So…um…I have a confession to make. I Love this series with a capital L. The supernatural mixed with the historical, the leads, and the humor are enough to give me weak knees just looking at the books. But I may have intentionally skipped over this book for quite some time. (I think it’s been 8-9 months since this came out.) I finally grabbed it and gave it a go.
*Potential Series Spoilers Ahead*
Tessa Gray should be happy, ecstatic even. She’s soon to be a bride. But it’s not that easy. Mortmain remains somewhere too close for comfort, with his eye still firmly fixed on Tessa. He wants her for something, though no one knows what. All they know is that Mortmain intends to destroy all the Shadowhunters with an automaton army and Tessa is the key to doing it. Jem and Will will do everything in their power to keep that from happening. But will they be too late?
You guys, I am so conflicted about this book. Hopefully I can put my feelings into words through this review.
Even though I am sick to death of saying it, it’s been some time since I read the last book in this series. (From this point on, I should really stick with series that have been finished. But I won’t.) I forgot some characters (ahem, the Lightwoods) and some of the finer points of the plot of the previous books (Mortmain, dude, you want to do WHAT with Tessa?!). I mean, this wasn’t just like I reread the info and went “oh yeah, I remember that now.” Nope. This was GONE. I didn’t remember the Lightwoods to save my life, not even in the slightest. Now, Charlotte and Sophie, other minor characters? Totally got them.
And this story felt like it dragged on in the beginning. A lot of it is because there is so much political backstabbing going on beneath the surface. It’s a lot of finding the puzzle pieces but having to wait to put them together. I struggled with being patient on that.
Also, the story jumps narrators all the time at will. I mean, it definitely helped tell the story. I’m not saying it didn’t. It was actually really nice to see things from nearly every character’s perspective. But that’s lengthy. And sometimes you’re seeing nearly the same scene from two or three different pairs of eyes. It felt like it took forever to get to the good stuff when this happened.
But then…then there’s the ending. That beautiful, wonderful, sob-inducing ending. Let me tell you. Some authors know how to craft a brilliant series but have no idea how to end it. Cassandra Clare is not one of those people. This was so beautifully written. I finished this book last night and it took me forever to read the last two chapters because I was crying so hard.
Let me set the scene for this because I think it’s kind of funny. This mammoth of a book was sitting on my floor in front of me as I read. I’m reading the final chapter (not the epilogue) and I’m sniffling. Fine. But then I get to the epilogue and I’m trying to quietly weep because it’s midnight and my family has gone to bed. Multiple times, I had to stop reading because I couldn’t see the words through my tears. In those cases, I had to sit back and fan my face to clear the tears. (If you’re curious, they’re not all sad tears. They were happy too.)
I’m so conflicted about how I should rate this book. You don’t even know. How do I combine my initial grumbling and impatience with the beauty I found at the end? Because I don’t think I cried this much at the end of Harry Potter. And because of this, I will always have a soft spot in my heart for Tessa, Will, and Jem.
So I’m torn. To be fair, though, I have to combine the experiences I had at the beginning and the end of the book. Even if I don’t really want to.
Oh, forget it. I’m pulling out the big guns.