Series: The Mortal Instruments #4
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publication: April 5th 2011, Margaret K. McElderry Books
Pages: 424 Pages, Paperback
Source: Thanks to Pan Macmillan for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.
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, 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. When Jace begins to pull away from her without explaining why, Clary 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.
SPOILERS. Spoilers everywhere.
I absolutely love The Mortal Instruments. The first three books were fantastic. The plot was full of twists and turns, the characters were fantastic and I absolutely fell in love with the series. So when I picked up the fourth instalment, City of Fallen Angels, I was expecting to open the book, and soon be gasping in shock, laughing at the characters' sarcasm and witty sayings, but unfortunately, City of Fallen Angels fell completely flat with me, and I ended up abandoning it the last 100 pages or so.
Never once did I think I would DNF a Cassandra Clare book, as I absolutely adore them. Her writing is fantastic, her characters are so extremely real and in my eyes, the books are amazing, but City of Fallen Angels was just not up to it's usual standard, in my opinion.
In City of Fallen Angels, a couple of months have passed since the Mortal War ended. Clary is training at the institute, Jace is her boyfriend and Jocelyn and Luke are getting married shortly. Simon is simultaneously dating both Maia and Isabelle, though neither know about the other one and everything is pretty much perfect. But then, all of a sudden Jace starts distancing himself from Clary, tormented by vicious nightmares taunting him of him hurting her and being the cause of her death. Shadowhunters are being murdered in Downworlder territory, someone is not happy with the peaceful treaty between the two groups. Then Simon is being tracked and trying to be killed by murderous things, though the Mark of Cain protects him. Soon Clary finds out that she herself has set in motion all these dreadful things that are happening, all due to her saving the one person she loves most, yet because she saved him, he is now being claimed by something worse than death.
It could've been good. It sounded pretty good. But to me, it wasn't.
I'll start off with the plot, not that there was much of one. It sounded like a lot was going to happen but practically the whole book was filled with nothingness, even now, thinking back on my reading experience of City of Fallen Angels, I can't actually remember what happened in the first half of the book. The story moved at such a snail pace and nothing much happened at all.
In the first three books there was a purpose for the story, they had to defeat Valentine and regain power of the Mortal Instruments, in City of Glass everything was pretty much rounded up and there didn't technically need to be more books written, even though I do absolutely adore the characters, the writing and the dialogue. I would've been sad if the series ended at the third book, but then Cassandra Clare should have had a proper idea and purpose for the next two books. This book felt very dry to me, as if not much thought was put into it while she was writing it. In City of Glass, Valentine died, Sebastian was supposed to be dead. They'd defeated the villain, regained the instruments, Clary and Jace were finally happy. It wasn't a completely happy ending with the death of Max still being felt by the readers and the characters, but it ended up pretty much perfect. And then Cassandra Clare thinks, wait, no, let me bring out a character that was supposed to be dead and have him wreak havoc amongst the characters and split up Clary and Jace once again and then there can be another three books with another evil villain that really, should be dead.
This book didn't need to be written or, she could've focused it on another character or written about something else. The whole Jace linked to Sebastian thing shouldn't have been done as it was just so completely unnecessary. I do remember hearing that this book was supposed to be from Simon's point of view, yet Jace and Clary took centre stage once again.
I'm just so extremely frustrated with her for CONSTANTLY having Jace and Clary fight and having something wrecking their relationship in EVERY SINGLE BOOK. Their relationship frustrated me to no end. One minute they were all like, I love you so much, then they fought because Jace started pulling away, and then they made out and started acting promiscuous and then it just repeated again. THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE NOVEL. *headdesk* I just wish Jace and Clary could have one book where no one is trying to murder them or possess them. Please. Then when I skimmed over the last few pages, I read about Clary kissing Jace again. I don't know how she could still kiss him, knowing what he had done...even though technically it wasn't him and I hope that they do manage to save him from this soul/mind sharing thing between him and Sebastian because it's Jace who I adore and I seriously hope Cassandra Clare will let sleeping dogs lie and (hopefully) once Jace is saved that she'll leave him and Clary alone.
Magnus and Alec were also constantly whining in this book. It started off with them going on a sort of honeymoon even though they're not married and it was sweet and all but then when Magnus mentioned he'd dated Camille in the past, Alec starts going into a huge huff about all the previous relationships Magnus has been in before. I could see why Alec was upset but seriously, if you're hundreds of years old of course you're going to have been in a relationship before. City of Fallen Angels had so much unnecessary angst in it at times, it was quite frustrating.
Then there was Simon, Simon who I absolutely adore, I wanted to hear more about Simon! And the story started off well, as it was focusing on him. Some people said in City of Fallen Angels that Simon had changed and wasn't the sweet, geeky Simon like in previous books but I thought Simon was still the same in here. I wish he did break it off with Maia and Isabelle as it was extremely rude of him to string them a long, but I hope things will work out between him and Izzy, and I hope Maia will find someone too...I'm not sure if I want her to go back to Jordan, even though he was Changing when he struck and bit her...I still wouldn't go back to him, but we'll see.
The characters all seemed different in this book. Alec was incredibly sensitive and quite unfair towards Magnus. Magnus also seemed to be lacking his usual spark which sucked as I adore his character. Jace was extremely emotionally unstable in this book, but I felt extremely sorry for him as you could see the plaintive feeling of torture he was going through completely engulfing him. Clary was very dependent in this book although I was extremely proud of her when she was fighting that demon, it's about time she starts defending herself. I absolutely adore Isabelle she's got so much spunk and character and I completely love her! It was interesting being introduced to Jordan in this book and seeing the interaction between him and Maia, due to their tumultuous past.
*Religious rant below, you don't have to read if you don't want to :)*
Another thing I was quite disappointed about in this book was the amount of twisted things that seemed to take place. The other books contained demons/magic but it wasn't as hectic as compared to all the stuff happening in this book. There were quite a few scenes which left me feeling quite sickened and this is also due to why I didn't finish the book. As towards the end, more and more hectic stuff was happening and I don't enjoy reading that kind of stuff. There were demon babies, and demon-worshipping cults and then there was this part where they said that Lilith, the mother of all demons, was Adam's (in the Garden of Eden) first wife. I don't know what mythological book Cassandra Clare got that from, or if she made it up herself, but it is highly unbelievable. Lilith said she got cast out as she didn't want to obey God or Adam and that's why God made Adam a second wife, called Eve. In the Bible, Eve made us all sinners by listening to the Serpent (the Devil) who tempted her to eat from the tree of life and disobey God. So in the book, if Lilith was his first wife, it would've been impossible for her to have disobeyed and hated both of them as there wasn't sin before Eve came along. Sorry for getting so technical but that's just my view point on that little story Cassandra Clare threw in there.
*Mini rant over*
I was sure City of Fallen Angels was going to be a fantastic instalment in the enchanting Mortal Instruments series, yet I couldn't quite bring myself to finish it. There was little to no plot, nothing happened the most part of the book and I ended up skimming the last 100 pages. I think what Cassandra Clare did to the characters was completely unnecessary and it was just another way for her to produce another book that would draw the story out more. In my opinion she should've finished up the series at City of Glass, or, focused on the other characters and their stories more in the next three books instead of writing something that focuses on Jace and Clary's constant shifting relationship. The first three books had Valentine as there villain and the three after that has Sebastian as their villain, who Cassandra Clare should've just left dead.
The characters seemed different and I wasn't laughing as frequently in the City of Fallen Angels as I had in the previous books. They all seemed to be lacking their usual sparkle and humour. I'm not sure if I want to read City of Lost Souls, I don't want to read more about the dark, twisted things that happen in these books and I'm also quite irritated about the constant drama in Jace and Clary's relationship. I do like how this book shows that she loves Jace so much she is willing to do anything to save him. That was a plus in this novel, the extraordinary lengths someone will go to in order to save the one they love.
City of Fallen Angels was filled with angst, deceit, betrayal and heartbreak, however, it was lacking it's usual charm.
I give it: 0 Cupcakes
I ended up reading the last few pages and I gave it 2 cupcakes :)