Published: May 8th, 2012
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Read from February 18th to 24th, 2014
Synopsis from Goodreads:
The New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments continues—and so do the thrills and danger for Jace, Clary, and Simon.
What price is too high to pay, even for love? When Jace and Clary meet again, Clary is horrified to discover that the demon Lilith’s magic has bound her beloved Jace together with her evil brother Sebastian, and that Jace has become a servant of evil. The Clave is out to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. As Alec, Magnus, Simon, and Isabelle wheedle and bargain with Seelies, demons, and the merciless Iron Sisters to try to save Jace, Clary plays a dangerous game of her own. The price of losing is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she still trust him? Or is he truly lost?
Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge. Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.
There's so much I could say that I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed about where to start. Before anything else I just have to remark how shocked I am that I'm actually caught up with this series before the sixth book is published. When I read the first book back in October I honestly thought it would take me years to actually make it through the entire series. Then I became a little obsessed, and here we are about four months later and I've read all five of them that are published so far. Of course I have all of the spin-off books that are already out and the seemingly countless ones that will be published, but it just feels odd to have already gotten through the series. Anyway, on to what I thought of the book.
The short answer is that I loved it. I will say that there are times where Clare's writing bothers me a bit and I wish it were a bit different. It's just that sometimes her wording or something, but it's never enough to put me completely off. It's just something that's been there in each of the books. I think I mentioned it in my review of the first book, but I didn't in my review of the other three. I thought I'd mention that once more though.
I've said in every review that the highlight of this series for me is the characters. I love them so, so much. Especially Magnus and Alec. I have to talk about Magnus and Alec in every review, so of course I'd bring them up in this one. I swear each book I think I can't love them anymore than I do, but somehow I just become more and more emotionally attached. It's a problem. A huge problem. I'm a bit scared about how I'm going to be after the sixth book at this rate.
Simon and Isabel were another highlight of this book for me. I've thought they'd make a nice couple since the beginning, but it was just kind of a nice thing that I was fine with. I wouldn't say that I was actively rooting for them to get together. I just wouldn't have minded if they did. After this book though I want nothing more than for them to be together. Isabel has always been a kind of neutral character for me who I didn't dislike but I didn't love either, just liked, but she really grew on me as a character in this book. I'm not sure if that's why I want her with Simon more now or if her and Simon as a couple just grew on me. I think it's a bit of both, but either way I really loved them in this book.
I also really loved Clary and Jace's relationship in this book. I've always been more enthusiastic about their relationship than Simon and Isabel's, and I would be upset if they broke up or something. However, as far as how much I love other literary couples, it wasn't a huge thing for me. I'm starting to love them even more after this book too though. I just really loved (or as much as you can love something when it's also painful to read at time) seeing their relationship over the course of the novel. The end could be considered a bit cheesy with them, but I actually really liked it.
I know this pretty much turned into me talking about couples, but like I said, the thing I've always loved the most about these books were the characters. This book especially seemed very focused on the relationships of each of them. The other books definitely had the romance, but in this one you had two established couples, and you had them dealing with things as a couple. I think that made the book feel more focused on that sort of aspect. The majority of the characters aren't single, which is a bit uncommon for a young adult series I think. In most series hardly anyone is getting together until the very end. I like the idea of exploring the actual relationships more, and I really liked that about this one.
I do want to talk about Sebastian though. I find him a really intriguing villain primarily because it's so hard to tell how human he really is. There's this huge question in my mind about whether or not he can feel any human emotion or is he's just a demonic sociopath. There's not doubt that even if he has emotions, he's still incredibly evil, but I have to admit that I feel a bit of sympathy for him being an experiment and what his childhood was like. That doesn't excuse what he's done at all, but it does make his story a bit more tragic, I think. I'm interested in seeing what happens to him in the sixth book.
I'm sure there's more I could find to say, but I'll end it here because I don't want to do too long of a review. I'm really excited for the sixth book to come out though so I can find out what happens next!