Thursday, 8 September 2011

Review: City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

I don't quite get the hype with this series.

Given all the love it gets, I was expecting to be blown away, but the first book left me mad while the second left me "meh". I was hoping City of Glass would make me see what was so ah-mazing. Picking up where City of Ashes left off, it sees the Shadowhunters heading "home" to Idris, where the fate of their world is being decided as they try to figure out how to deal with Voldemort Valentine and his demon army. As the final chapter in a trilogy (though more books were added later - which kinda annoys me in itself, but that's another story), City if Glass is naturally more epic, action-packed and conclusive than its predecessor - which is why I was all the more surprised that it, too, left me feeling..."meh".

Don't get me wrong, it's a page-turner alright, and enjoyable enough. But, y'know, I've had better. The language is fine, but it can get repetitive, and while I think the characters are great in theory, they did a bunch of things in this book that had me doing this:

Jace in particular was driving me batty; the boy's got issues, and I sympathise, but one of his most attractive qualities is his strength and a few of his actions in this - though they were probably supposed to show his selflessness and bravery - ultimately came across to me as weak and wallowing. And once again the WTF plotline persisted and put me off when I should have been turned on. Overall, I was satisfied with this as the ending to the series, but unfortunately I just don't love it as a whole - no matter how much I really, really want to.

Rating: 3.5/5

Spoilery Talking Points
  • I know I've complained about it before but I still can't get over the incest thing - especially that it was dragged out over TWO WHOLE BOOKS. It's not that I object to incest in general (in book form, that is - in actual general, I definitely object); it's the way it was used as the sole source of tension in Jace and Clary's relationship, to add a level of forbiddenness that otherwise wouldn't be there - only to have a "lol, jokes, you can totally make out" sprung on them at the last minute... It just felt manipulative and cheap.
  • The whole two Jonathans thing also felt kind of contrived. But I have a feeling we haven't seen the last of Sebastian...
  • I don't see why this series needs to be extended beyond this book - though there were a few unfinished threads in the end, there was ultimately a strong sense of closure. Still, I was interested to read City of Fallen Angels and see how Jace and Clary played out after finding out they aren't related - until I read the blurb about how Jace is all distant coz he dreams of killing her or something and... I just can't. I can't do it. Not now, at least.
Eye Candy
The same as City of Bones and City of Ashes, plus... 

Matt Dallas as Sebastian

Adam Lambert as Magnus

Malese Jow as Aline

Fine Print
Genre: Young Adult/Urban Fantasy
Published: 2010
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Get It: Book Depository


  1. I tried to read the first book and was very easily distracted and ended up taking it back to the library. I want to try it again, but it didn't jump right out and grab me the way I was expecting to...

  2. I love this series, but I think it's one of those you need to read and not think to much about. Clare got her start writing Harry Potter fanfiction and the parallels are glaringly obvious if you go beneath a surface level at all (kind of on the surface too). But I love the adventure and romance of it.

  3. ahh i have this book waiting on my shelves but i still haven't finished the first one, The incest thing is always a turn off for me in books.
    Its a shame you didnt like it, I dont think its my thing either.

  4. AHHH Thank you for at least one person who agrees with me. First one was blah, second was ugh, and I am not even going to try to explain how I felt about this. Sad to say I might not read another Cassandra Clare again :/

  5. @Liza - I felt the same! It does pick up speed as the series progresses, but as you can probably tell it still didn't grab me like I thought it would.

    @Alison - The adventure is great, but the romance - I think that's one of my problems with the book. It just didn't feel romantic to me; more frustrating than anything.

    @Abbey - Sadly, it really gets dragged out. :(

    @Jillian - I am so glad I'm not the only one! I think I'll read the rest of the series down the track, but at the moment I'd rather read something else, that hopefully won't make me so angry. :)

  6. City of Fallen Angels was the worst of the series in my opinion. So don't be expecting anything better with book 4.

    However, I did love Clockwork Angel, Clare's Infernal Devices trilogy. I would say it's worth checking out even if you didn't love The Mortal Instruments.

  7. Oh really?! Definitely going to give it a miss for awhile then. I might check out the Infernal Devices, though, thanks!

  8. oh and I don't know - people rave about Jace. I think he's a horrible guy!! lol

  9. Yeah he was definitely a bit horrible in this one. I liked him, but I definitely don't think he's the ultimate.