Book Review: Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

LordofShadowsLord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

Published by Margaret K. McElderry on May 23, 2017

Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Fantasy

Pages: 699 Format: Hardcover Source: Purchased

4.5/5 Stars

Image and Description Credit: Goodreads

Would you trade your soul mate for your soul?

A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by honor. The word of a Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love.

Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides?

Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own.

When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.


If you weren’t aware, Cassandra Clare’s shadowhunter books are some of my all time faves. Yes I know they have their fair share of problems and the first couple were a bit rough, but these series have come along way over the years. The Dark Artifices has found a special place in my heart and Lord of Shadows went a long way to solidifying my thoughts that this is her best work yet.

Honestly the reason why I adore Clare’s books so fully is her wonderful characters, and ever since City of Heavenly Fire the Blackthorn siblings have skyrocketed to the top of my faves list. I think it’s the deep family bond between all of them. Julian, in particular, with his utter devotion and care for his brothers, sisters, and Emma of course. She’s a force to be reckoned with but still dealing with so much internally. The two of them together on the page is a real punch to the gut.

Mark, that lost boy, still has my heart. His dynamic with both Cristina and Kieran is utterly compelling and I cannot get enough of it. I also really liked getting more perspective from Kit, Ty, Livvy, and even Drusilla. Clare continues to flesh out these characters and I have no clue how she manages to wield so many of them at once. There’s also plenty of cameos from previous series and each mention brings a bit more joy to my being.

In her writing, Clare makes the mundane seem oh so magical and while I love the LA institute, it was a lot of fun returning to London as well as venturing further into Faerie. As far as plot is concerned I’m not going to go into too much detail. I loved the connections between the past and present and seeing the ongoing repercussions of the Cold Peace. I also appreciated taking on topics close to home in this current political climate. It was all woven together extremely well.

Overall I completely adored Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare and cannot wait to find out what happens next. Of course there will be plenty of waiting, but I’ll just be here fawning over the magnificent characters and weeping from the sheer amount of feels. At least there’s more in this world to come. If you’re looking to dive into the shadowhunter world, now is the time. Highly recommend!

So have you read Lord of Shadows? Who is your favorite character in the Blackthorn clan? Have you recovered from that ending?

Let me know in the comments below!

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