Series: The Dark Artifices #1
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Main themes: Love, Family, Betrayal
Rating: 5 stars
Lady Midnight is set 5 years after the Dark War (The Mortal Instruments), and follows the lives of Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorn, two characters introduced to the series in City of Heavenly Fire. At 12 years of age both became orphans; Emma’s parents were brutally murdered in an obscure manner, and Julian was left with no choice but to kill his father who had been Turned, in order to protect his younger siblings. Not only that, Julian’s older sister Helen had been exiled by the Clave, and his older brother Mark was taken by the fey, and he became apart of the Wild Hunt. So now, all grown up, it’s been interesting to see how these characters have coped since the unfortunate events from 5 years ago.
As the first book in The Dark Artifices series, Lady Midnight makes a magnificent arrival into the Shadowhunter universe. I’d describe it as an absorbing mystery, and I’m really glad that Emma and Julian are at the heart of it.
Emma and Julian have become two of my favourite characters from the book. Emma is passionate, bold, and has the heart of a true warrior. And Julian; he’s clever, strong-willed, and his ability to love wholeheartedly is what makes him so admirable. Through their friendship, you get to see the beauty of parabatai in all it’s glory. I really love how close Emma and Jules are, even without becoming parabatai it’s clear that they were always true soulmates. But as they got older, this love turned into something completely different which tragically, is to their misfortune as it’s forbidden for parabatai to be linked romantically. The repercussions of their love is revealed at the end of this book, and it’s actually so so tragic. As I always say, Cassandra Clare has a real knack for dropping characters in the most unfortunate situations, and we’re just left thinking ‘how on earth will they get out of this one?’
One of my ultimate favourite things about this book was the the relationship shown between the Blackthorn family, whom I have developed a fierce love for. They were woven into the story so perfectly and at first I worried about not being able to remember everyone properly but it wasn’t long before it felt as if I were a part of the family. Their familial bond is just on another level, and they are just a really special family. Their different personalities, humour, and bond with one another is really amazing.
I loved this book immensely and I love how it’s such a powerful start to the series. I really like that whilst Clare’s series are in the same universe and even feature some of the same characters, each one has a very distinct feel to it. In many ways, I think Lady Midnight is very unique, and is one of Clare’s most polished novels. It was a brilliant mystery, and the way everything had unravelled in the end was spectacular. But in true Cassandra Clare style, nothing is ever really over, and so there’s a promise of much much more to come in the sequel. It’s definitely become one of my favourite books from the Shadowhunter Chronicles and so I’d 100% recommend! 🙂