I was excited to read it, since I love her Infernal Devices trilogy (though if I'm being honest, I suspected all alo...moreI'm so disappointed in this book.
I was excited to read it, since I love her Infernal Devices trilogy (though if I'm being honest, I suspected all along that these would not be of the same caliber)-- but when I began reading, my eyes started glazing over not even ten pages in. I had my doubts that it would be as enticing as Clockwork Angel, seeing as how it's set in modern day New York and the main characters are fifteen years old (both major turn-offs for me) but no, Cassandra Clare went the extra mile to ensure my vehement dislike for this book. My grievances, as follows:
The characters are annoying. And I don't mean regular old they-just-don't-do-it-for-me annoying, they were so one-dimensional that there were entire scenes of dialogue where I literally could not tell who was saying what because each character's style and mannerisms were exactly the same. And Jace, who I was expecting to be mega-sexy à la Will, from Infernal Devices, was so poorly contrived that my jaw wanted to drop. It's not even the clichéd sarcastic-sexy-bad-boy-with-heart-of-gold syndrome that bothered me, so much as the fact that everything he says that's intended to come across as "badass" and "snarky" and "oh so alluring" just ends up sounding stupid and childish and "girls are actually attracted to this tripe??" Also, by the third chapter of the book I was seriously rooting for Clary to get hit by a bus or thrown unceremoniously in front of an oncoming subway train. I find it borderline insulting that Clare intended her to be the easy-to-relate-to heroine of the novel.
The plot is laughable. I actually shook my head with pity when the "twists" were revealed. I don't need to say much else, since everyone else probably already recognizes the striking similarities between The Mortal Instruments and Harry Potter/Star Wars (with the exception that J.K. Rowling and George Lucas both have talent enough to craft compelling, well-written series, of course.)
The majority of the writing in this book makes me want to beat my head against a wall. Like, as I pointed out earlier: "But the shadowy figure of the Silent Brother was so-- well, silent. Silence itself seemed to flow from him like a dark tide..." So, you mean than he's silent, as in, he doesn't make any noise at all?? The majority of my time spent reading this book felt like a poorly fashioned foray into masochism, minus the pleasure. Where the hell was her editor while all of this was happening?
By the time I'd gotten a third of the way through this book I was so thoroughly put off that I only managed to skim-read the rest, which is something that I haven't been driven to do since college. In the end, I can only assume that her writing has improved with time, or else that the series is simply better off set in Victorian times with corsets and parasols and murderous automatons. Not to mention characters with actual, definitive personalities. And a plot that doesn't make me long desperately for a power drill.(less)