By: Cassandra Clare
Emma Carstairs is a warrior, a Shadowhunter, and the best in her generation. She lives for battle. Shoulder to shoulder with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, she patrols the streets of Los Angeles, where vampires party on the Sunset Strip, and faeries—the most powerful of supernatural creatures—teeter on the edge of open war with Shadowhunters. When the bodies of humans and faeries turn up murdered in the same way Emma’s parents were when she was a child, an uneasy alliance is formed. This is Emma’s chance for revenge—and Julian’s chance to get back his brother Mark, who is being held prisoner by the faerie Courts. All Emma, Mark, and Julian have to do is solve the murders within two weeks…and before the murderer targets them.
Their search takes Emma from sea caves full of sorcery to a dark lottery where death is dispensed. And each clue she unravels uncovers more secrets. What has Julian been hiding from her all these years? Why does Shadowhunter Law forbid parabatai to fall in love? Who really killed her parents—and can she bear to know the truth? — Lady Midnight, Goodreads synopsis
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You know what’s funny? I rated this book 4/5 stars, but I found it absolutely tedious. It took me a good 200 pages before I really started caring and even then I found that my interest was paper-thin. It wasn’t until about the last 150 pages of this nearly 700 page book that my interest was piqued.
It’s not that I didn’t like this book. I thought Emma Carstairs, the main point of view for the book, was interesting and funny. Her snark was a breath of fresh air in the mix of forgettable characters. I pretty much hated every other character though. I thought Julian Blackthorn, Emma’s parabatai, was incredibly boring and all of his siblings annoyed me.
Note: I don’t know if Cassandra Clare understands people under the age of 18 but she makes all of the characters that are under 15 in Lady Midnight seem much younger than their actual ages.
Beyond the characters, the plot was shaky at best, which involved an investigation into a series of mundane and fairy murders. The details of Emma and Julian’s investigation took up the bulk of the book, as well as a bunch of wishy-washy feelings that plagued each of the characters — none of which made the book anymore endearing.
It was so unfortunate because I love The Infernal Devices trilogy, which is easily Clare’s best series yet in my opinion. Instead it was very similar to The Mortal Instruments which I was unable to read beyond the fourth book — The City of Fallen Angels — in that series.
You’re probably asking, “You have so many issues with this book, how could you possibly rate it 4/5 stars?”
Lady Midnight deserves the four stars because while the majority of the book felt like it really dragged, I still cared about certain characters and the last 150 pages or so were exceptional. It was like Clare needed the build up. It felt so deliberate — make your readers trudge through the mundane (pun so not intended) details and then give them the ending that they deserve and a set up to the second book of the series with a bang.
So yes, 4/5 seems weird, but it feels right.
Has anyone else read this book? What did you think? Also, am I the only one who believes The Mortal Instruments isn’t good? (I know everyone loves The Infernal Devices.