Review: “Lady Midnight” begins Dark Artifices Trilogy

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Kaitlyn Cashdollar, Reporter

“Lady Midnight” is the first book in the Dark Artifices trilogy by Cassandra Clare. It is the sequel to the Mortal Instruments series.

It has been five years since Emma Carstairs’ parents were murdered by Sebastian Morgenstern. Or at least, that’s what everybody says. Emma, however, thinks that there were different forces responsible for her parents death. Now, murders similar to her parents’ erupt throughout the city, and as she starts to investigate, she lays everything on the line.

She also has to battle against her feelings for Julian Blackthorn, her parabatai. Parabatai are two people with extreme friendships, but it is illegal for them to engage in romantic relationships.

Julian has problems of his own. His brother, Mark, was kidnaped five years ago by the Wild Hunt, a rouge group of faeries. They have now offered to return Mark to them, at the price that they find and bring the murder to them.

Overall, I thought Cassandra Clare did an excellent job on the book. It was exciting and kept me on the edge of my seat. It wasn’t a difficult book, and the reading wasn’t very difficult. The action blended well with the mystery, and was never too overwhelming. One thing I think that did overpower the action was the romance. It wasn’t as much a bad relationship, it was just the only thing Clare tended to talk about in some chapters. It was a bit overwhelming, and at many times I was bored. If she had created more action and less romance, it would have captured my attention more.

One of Clare’s strengths is her ability to create and develop characters over short periods of time. I found myself caring for the minor characters as much as the main ones. Even though Clare barely talked about some of the characters, she was able to reveal their distinct personalities, and describe them deeply. One character especially was Julian’s brother, Mark. He was one of the more important minor characters, and I found that I enjoyed reading about him more than other characters.

For a 700-page book, it moved very fast. Clare spends a lot of time throughout the book describing characters and places, more than action. It felt that there were too few events, and too many pages. I was able to blow through it in three days, because of how fast it moved. It was gripping and always had me thinking. Every time I thought I had figured it out, it turned out there was another twist just around the corner. The ending, was very well done, and left me wanting more. It wasn’t an overwhelming cliffhanger, but I still had many questions left unanswered. The next book, “Lord of Shadows,” will be released April, 2017.