“But our love it was stronger by far than the love
Of those who were older than we-
Of many far wiser than we-
And neither the angels in heaven above,
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.”
Strangely enough, Cassandra Clare’s novel is based on the famous Edgar Allen Poe poem “Annabel Lee.” Two of the characters are Annabel Lee and her lover, and the chapter titles are lines from the poem. But that’s not all: after waiting for almost two years, readers are finally awarded with an eight hundred page book on the newest Shadowhunter world: The Dark Artifices.
Five years after the City of Heavenly Fire incidents, Emma Carstairs is living with the Blackthorns in Los Angeles, where every day for her is fighting demons and trying to be the next Jace. Now, Emma is in love, but she can’t tell him because its her parabatai, Julian aka “Jules”. Supposedly there’s a rule about parabatai falling in love, and Shadowhunter universe lovers know how strict the Shadowhunters are with rules (for those of you who are new, it ends up with someone dying, or in Edmond Herondale’s case, being brutally tortured by having your tattoos torn off).
And now, both faeries and humans alike are being killed, and in return for solving the mystery, the faeries have decided to return a man named Mark Blackthorn for a bit, who hasn’t aged and doesn’t recognize anybody.
Anyway, this was a great book, although there were some things I was disappointed with. To start off with the bad news first, I felt that this book rushed things a little too much. In the Infernal Devices, we didn’t find out about Tessa’s warlock secret until near the end of the second book in the trilogy. On the other hand, Lady Midnight kept teasing us about the secret of the parabatai, and from the way it was going, it sounded like it won’t be revealed until the second book, but then it’s quickly revealed at the end, which makes it slightly disappointing. It also makes the rest of the series be hard to see the rest of the series. Additionally, I have mentioned earlier that the book is eight hundred pages long, making there be a lot of detail that is sometimes hard to keep track of.
However, there are many details that can’t be ignored, as they are great highlights and put this book as one of the best of the year. Clare does not fail with her psychological plot line, between her not-expected-easily villain, the parallelism of the Jules/Emma parabatai love relationship to Clace “incense” relationship, and the plot twists that will keep you on the edge of your seat, along with a tremendous cliffhanger, no matter how disappointing to me.
I have mentioned earlier that Poe fans will like the book, but those who are missing the Mortal Instruments series will love the book too. Magnus pops up at least twice throughout the book, and Clary, Alec, and Jace make cameo appearances. Also, at least in my copy from the Mission Viejo Library, Clare inserts a side story that takes place at the end of Lady Midnight, in which TMI fans can rejoice over Sizzy, Clace, and of course, Malec! 🙂
Overall, with some slight disappointments, the overall plot was good and the references to Annabel Lee made the book extremely worthwhile to check out, even if one hasn’t read the TMI series.
Lady Midnight is available for checkout at the Mission Viejo Library.