Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Review: City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

Title: City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments #4)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Release Date: April 5th, 2011
Pages: 424
City of Fallen Angels takes place two months after the events of City of Glass. In it, a mysterious someone’s killing the Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine’s Circle and displaying their bodies around New York City in a manner designed to provoke hostility between Downworlders and Shadowhunters, leaving tensions running high in the city and disrupting Clary’s plan to lead as normal a life as she can — training to be a Shadowhunter, and pursuing her relationship with Jace. As Jace and Clary delve into the issue of the murdered Shadowhunters, they discover a mystery that has deeply personal consequences for them — consequences that may strengthen their relationship, or rip it apart forever. 
Meanwhile, internecine warfare among vampires is tearing the Downworld community apart, and only Simon — the Daylighter who everyone wants on their side — can decide the outcome; too bad he wants nothing to do with Downworld politics. Love, blood, betrayal and revenge: the stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels.
Plot: 4/5
Creativity: 5/5
Characters: 5/5
Writing: 4/5
Impact: 4/5
Overall: 4/5 

The fourth installment in the famed Mortal Instruments series, City of Fallen Angels is another thrilling urban fantasy filled with originality and adventure. 

Taking place a few weeks after where City of Glass left off, the story is set back in New York. Clary is dealing with her new life as a Shadowhunter, and Simon is coming to terms with being a Daylighter and trying to manage dating Isabelle and Maia at the same time. Things are a little chaotic, but on the whole good. But Jace begins to stray away, and mysterious Downworlder deaths begin to surface. Did Clary and friends really find peace with Valentine's downfall, or was it just the beginning of the end?

For the first time in the entire series, the story is told mostly from Simon's point of view. Simon is a character I had a love-hate relationship with from the very beginning, ending in love in City of Glass, so it was really nice to be able to see things from his perspective. Along with the primary point of view, his character is also given the spotlight in this novel. Jace and Clary still play key roles, but Simon is given more attention than he's received in the previous books. I found myself really sympathyzing with him, and though he was never really a favorite of mine before, I have to say I enjoyed the change.

As with the three previous books, the action and creativity is alive and well in this novel. Clare is a total powerhouse- her imagination is simply amazing. I didn't think she could do it, but she manages to continue building on the story, adding more elements and characters, further enriching the series' urban fantasy background. Seriously, it's insane. I can't wait to see what she comes up with next.

However, I didn't find this installment as gripping as the first three. The first three novels had me head-over-heels in love, staying up all hours just to read them. City of Fallen Angels didn't have that same effect for me. I can't really put my finger on what it is that kept me from loving it as much as the rest, but I felt like it just wasn't the same. But taken alone, the novel is still really good and packed to the brim with excitement, and I will definitely be picking up the next books in the series.

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