Monday, 28 January 2013

Review: City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare

City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Walker Books
Released: May 8th 2012
My Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Find it on Goodreads

What price is too high to pay, even for love? When Jace and Clary meet again, Clary is horrified to discover that the demon Lilith’s magic has bound her beloved Jace together with her evil brother Sebastian, and that Jace has become a servant of evil. The Clave is out to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. As Alec, Magnus, Simon, and Isabelle wheedle and bargain with Seelies, demons, and the merciless Iron Sisters to try to save Jace, Clary plays a dangerous game of her own. The price of losing is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she still trust him? Or is he truly lost?

Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge. Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the
Mortal Instruments series. (from Goodreads)

NOTE: So I wrote this review about two days after I got it which couldn't have been more than a week after it was released (pretty sure I got it as soon as I possibly could). For some reason, however, I never posted it. Don't ask me why, because I honestly don't know. I seem to have waited an absurdly long time to put it on the blog. It's written with the excitement of having just found out lots of revelations, and even though it's months after release date now, I've decided to just leave the review as it is. You get more of an authentic view of my reaction! Just pretend it's May 2012 again :P.

Warning: rambling, incoherence, etc. etc.

This book was just a mind game. I’m telling you, Cassandra Clare does these things to us on purpose. She KNOWS that any slither of information she releases is going to turn into a gazillion theories that make us all crazy trying to figure out which one is true. SO MANY THEORIES. SO MANY THINGS THAT MAY OR MAY NOT BE SYMBOLIC. SO MUCH I STILL WANT TO KNOW.
I WANT to be spoilerific here. I want to spew out everything that’s been running through my brain over the past two days - but I won’t, because despite the fact I am DYING here trying to figure out what is going to happen in Clockwork Princess and City of Heavenly Fire, I realise many people still won’t have read the book. But when you do guys, when you do...

Jace and Clary. There was something about those two. Their story was just so compelling, it was impossible to be bored. I was never a huge fan of Clary, to be honest, I always found her to be a bit weepy and reckless, but I guess I had to admire her stubbornness in this one. She did not give up. Even when everyone else thought the situation was hopeless, Clary – whether out of bravery or stupidity (it’s a fine line) – refused to believe it was over. And it was her decision that caused things to turn out like they did, so even though she didn’t participate in a lot of things going on, she definitely did do something, at least. And Jace, well. Who could describe him, really? He’d been through so much and he was still going through so much. I don’t think “Jace” and “easy life” will ever fit into the same sentence...

Simon was completely awesome in this book. I absolutely loved him! He was pretty much one of the funniest characters and definitely made me laugh a few times – his banter with Magnus was HILARIOUS. He also used his vampirism for good, he was all badass but in the “hey, I’m funny!” kind of way and the thing I liked most was the way his and Isabelle’s relationship began to develop. Isabelle had always been the best female character in the TMI series for me, and I think in City of Lost Souls, we got to see a side of her that we perhaps haven’t seen much of before. And it made me realise just how amazing she and Simon would be together. I’d never thought about it much in the previous books, but now I’m definitely supporting them both. Can’t wait to see what happens between them in the next book!

Sebastian was...interesting. Not what I expected, if I’m honest. I sort of actually wanted to sympathise with him at first because even though he seemed evil...was he?  Could he have been more than that? I didn’t know at first. I mean, look at his backstory. He was experimented on, abandoned, raised brutally to be a fighting machine and was never taught to be human. He may have had demon blood, but he never chose to be born that way, and he just seemed awfully lonely. I wondered if he’d have been different if Valentine hadn’t brought him up and his mother hadn’t left him. I never liked Jocelyn, and actually agreed with Sebastian when he said she was ruthless. Buuuut, in the end, I had to pick a side, and Sebastian was not what I wanted him to be.  He was just completely evil. Not saying he wasn’t still an intriguingly evil character (he was), but he was...I guess, a villain incapable of redemption.

The character I felt the most sorry for in this book, though, was Magnus. Magnus! My poor Magnus. My favourite character of Cassie’s, and I just wanted to cry for him. Alec did some stupid things, and as much as I loved him too, I couldn’t help but find it hard to forgive him. I remember back when I read City of Fallen Angels and thought there was not enough MagnusxAlec in it, desperately wishing for more. Well, readers, BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR. Because NOW I am pining for City of Heavenly Fire; I NEED to find out what happens to Magnus next, because if anyone deserves a happy ending (or temporary happy ending, as immortality tends to get in the way of things), it’s Magnus.

Now on to what I personally thought was the best part of the book: the TID connections. Everything was finally, finally coming together. There were so many clues and hints and possible symbols and oh my God, seriously. I was flipping out. FLIPPING OUT. Every time I stumbled across something that could be TID related, I practically screamed. Plus, I loved the way that loads of things connected back to City of Bones. It was all so clever. I have no idea what’s gonna happen in Clockwork Princess or City of Heavenly Angels. And Cassie is EVIL. She is pure EVIL. I have so many theories and I have no way of knowing if they’re right until March next year. I liked that City of Lost Souls was a little slower in pace than the other books, because it allowed me to sort through my thoughts. And I think I would have gone crazy if I hadn’t been able to do that. Ahh. Theories. So many. Going through my mind. And while I’m not sure what’s true and what isn’t, I AM sure that Clockwork Princess is going to destroy us.  Probably City of Heavely Fire too, because while the ending of this book wasn’t a huge cliffhanger like in CoFA, it still left me thinking, “OMG WTF.”

Overall, City of Lost Souls was fabulous. Better than City of Fallen Angels and a MUST READ for TMI/TID fans. And if you haven’t started this series really, really should. Though be warned, you will probably become obsessed.


  1. There really is something about Jace and Clary! Even with their flaws, I find their relationship so very compelling too. I am dying to find out what happens in the next book now, especially after the way things ended. Great review! :)

  2. I love your reaction! This series was only a meh for me. I decided just the first three books were enough. I did always like Simon, though, and wondered what happens to him.

  3. Yay you finally posted this!! I love that it's your reactions at the time, it's making me nostalgic a bit haha. Oh Magnus, our Magnus. I hope things get better for him, he just seems to get screwed over. Simon totally stole the show in this one which is great because I love him so much. And the development re Isabelle was so good. Sebastian...I thought he'd be different too, I guess it's good he wasn't *too* appealing but I did expect to be all swoony over him...

    AND OMG THE SYMBOLS THE LINKS THE HINTS OMGOMGOMG not long to wait for CP2 now!! I swear, I feel like I've been waiting for this book for my entire life

    Cait x

  4. This is a wonderful series! If you like forbidden love, uncontrollable desire and juicy secrets, this is the series for you!

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  5. I really loved this book overall but it definitely wasn't her best. I really loved the romance of Jace and Clary! Ship for sure! However, I found the increasing number of romance scenes to be irritating. I love Jace x Clary, and Simon and Izzy was tolerable and cute at times, but did anyone else feel like Maia and Jordan were pointless characters? For the majority of the book, their POVs were just make out scenes... its getting stale ...

  6. This book is one of the best yet. Cassandra has really out done herself. I bought this book around noon and didn`t put it down until I was finished.... at four o`clock in the morning. And I have read it atleast another three times since. You would have to be crazy not to be in love with this series and its prequel. I will be waiting in suspense for the next book.

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