“Ghosts of the Shadow Market” by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, Kelly Link and Robin Wasserman

Rated 5 stars ***** 2019. Margaret K. McElderry Books. 607 p.

Ghosts of the Shadow MarketSeveral well-known Young Adult authors join with Cassandra Clare to pen 10 stories about Jem, Tessa and other characters from the “Mortal Instruments, “Infernal Devices” and “Dark Artifices” series in Shadow Markets of different locations and time periods.

Unlike “Tales of the Shadowhunter Academy”, “Ghosts of the Shadow Market” doesn’t waste time rehashing characters in each story. By now anyone who’s read the series knows the characters, so constantly describing them in each story is boring and repetitive for those of us who know all about them. Thank you for not taking more than a quick sentence or two to tell us about them in each story.

The stories take place between 1899 (when Matthew Fairchild was parabatai with James Herondale and Jem was still Brother Zacahriah) and 2013 (when Jem and Tessa are married and expecting their first child.) This time period is also when “Queen of Air and Darkness” ended, leading readers into what will definitely be a new series with Jace Herondale’s Thule double preparing to wreck disaster on the characters we’ve grown to know and love.

Highly recommended for ages 14 and older.






“Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments reader” Edited by Cassandra Clare

Rated 4 stars **** 2013. SmartPop. 198 p.

Shadowhunters and DownworldersIn this book, thirteen young adult authors write short essays about different characters from various Cassandra Clare books. Some essays are funny and informative, while all will make readers look at the characters discussed in new and fresh ways.

The first essay caused me to rate it 4 instead of 5 stars, as reading it almost put me to sleep. It started out full of deep thinking psychological thoughts, which reminded me of required psychology textbook readings from my undergraduate days, thus ensuring my sleepiness. With Brooklyn being where I was born, raised and spent the adult years of my life, followed by a stint in Staten Island, I did agree with the author’s interpretations of life in her adopted town of New York City.

I just finished reading the very boring “The Shadowhunter’s Codex,” which really did make me take quite a few naps. So, after reading the first essay, I was worried “Shadowhunters and Downworlders” was going to be more of the same. Whew! I’m so glad it got better. The other essays were very interesting, especially “Simon Lewis: Jewish, Vampire, Hero.” Altogether, these authors kept my attention so well that I finished the book in just a few hours.

Recommended for ages 14 and older.

“Clockwork angel” Cassandra Clare

Rated 4 stars **** 2010. The Infernal Devices, book #1. Margaret K. McElderry Books.

Clockwork AngelI am beginning to read The Infernal Devices series for the third time, and it’s amazing how much I forgot over the years. I read it, probably sometime in 2012 before I started my blog, and reviewed it here in 2014. I found it to be just as exciting in 2019 as it was in 2012 and 2014.

There’s not much I can add to my earlier review, so if you want to find out the juicy details of how Tessa met Wil and Jem, take a look at it.

Recommended for ages 14 and over.

“City of heavenly fire” Cassandra Clare

Rated 3 stars *** ebook. 2014. The Mortal Instruments #6. Simon & Schuster. (Margaret K. McElderry Books.)

City of heavenly fireI jumped up 1 star from my 2012 review. Everything plot wise is still the same, as Sebastian is still evil, Jace and Clary still can’t get their act together (most of the time), Simon, Isabelle, Alex and Magnus love each other but spend too much time circling each other’s wagons, and the Clave is still ignoring common sense.

With the introduction of Emma Carstairs, Julian and the rest of the Blackthorn family of young children, it’s almost certain they’ll be included in the new series Clare planned to follow this one – especially with the many hints planted about Emma’s move to Los Angeles and her plan to investigate her parent’s strange murder.

Now I’m off to reread “The infernal devices.”

Recommended for ages 14 and older.

“City of lost souls” Cassandra Clare

Rated 3 stars *** ebook. 2012. The Mortal Instruments #5. Simon & Schuster. (Margaret K. McElderry Books.)

City of lost soulsLove lost, and found. Blood, death, betrayal, lust, anger and many other emotions are poured into this, the fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series. There’s not much else I can say that hasn’t already been said in my 2012 and 2014 reviews, so feel free to read them to get the gist of the story. However I will say this book has a lot more sexual overtones in it than any of the other books. I’m guessing it’s because more of the storyline takes place in Sebastian’s world, and we all know what kind of guy he is and the kind of world he’d inhabit.

After you read my reviews about everything that happened, I can say that I’m still very surprised why Sebastian survived the fire of the angel’s sword that gave Jace his freedom. I thought he would burn up and die, as the sword was supposed to kill the person who was more like Hell than Heaven – only saving the one who was more Heavenly. I guess I’ll have to wait until book #6 to refresh my memory and find out the answer.

Though it’s becoming a little tedious continuing to read about Clary’s spontaneous bursts of heroism and ability to not think about anything or anyone but Jace, I still recommend this for readers ages 14 and older.

“City of fallen angels” Cassandra Clare

Rated 3 stars *** ebook. 2011. The Mortal Instruments #4. Simon & Schuster. (Margaret K. McElderry Books.)

City of fallen angelsWhen I read this book and wrote about it in 2014, I commented that it was full of teenage angst and that Clary was annoying. Unfortunately nothing has changed in 5 years. It’s still full of teenage angst and Clary is still annoying as she blames herself for everything that happens, and she can’t seem to live without a daily shot of Jace. Repeatedly readers have to hear all about how it’s her fault Jace gets possessed, it’s her fault Simon has the mark of Cain. It’s her fault that…you get the idea. It’s definitely her fault that I have to write these sentences in my review!

Though juggling several storylines at one, Cassandra Clare does manage to keep suspense in the telling of all of them. As usual, she left a few open questions such as “what happened to Camille?, what’s going to happen with Alec and Magnus?” and, of course, the BIG one – “what the heck happened with Jace and Sebastian at the end of the book?”

Guess I’ll look no further than the last book in the series “City of lost souls” to find my answers, so off I go!

Recommended for ages 14 and older who know all about annoying teenagers and their angst.

“City of glass” Cassandra Clare

Rated 4 stars ***** ebook. The Mortal Instruments Book #3. Margaret E. McElderry Books.

City of GlassWhen I reviewed this book in 2014, I wrote about all the plot details that made it exciting. Go ahead and read that review to get a much longer synopsis than what you’ll see today.

What I didn’t mention then was that this book was much more violent than any of the first two in the series. More people died in gory ways, more battles were fought, and more devastating (and more evil) demons roamed the Shadowhunter world. Jace and Clary’s love was hopelessly doomed, casting a dark pallor over everything, while Simon seemed one step away from Death by Vampire.

Though the book had a much darker feel to it, Clary and Jace’s continued love for each other, and the vivid description of the Angel Raziel, shone a light past all the darkness giving hope to the future Shadowhunter world.

Now off to read book #4 “City of fallen angels.”

Recommended for ages 14 and older.



“City of Ashes” Cassandra Clare

Rated 5 stars ***** ebook. 2008. The Mortal Instruments #2. Margaret K. McElderry Books.

City of AshesYes, I’m hooked on this series all over again – for the THIRD time. As mentioned in an earlier post, I reviewed this book way back in 2014, and the only thing that’s changed is that I gave it an extra star for being even more exciting.

I don’t have anything else to add except that Valentine, Clary and Jace’s father, seems to be even more evil and despicable than ever and I’m gaining a soft spot for Magnus.

Now, off to Book #3 “City of glass.”



“City of bones” by Cassandra Clare

Rated 5 stars ***** ebook. 2007. The Mortal Instruments #1. 

City of BonesI read the entire “Mortal Instruments” series back in 2011 and, again, in 2014. Since the series ended Cassandra Clare has been happily writing about Shadowhunters, Downworlders and their adventures, so I recently bought more of her books about this exciting world. Clare is the only author I know who can take minor (and major) characters from her books and create an entirely new series about them. Now THAT’s a talent!

However, after thumbing through my new purchases, I realized there were references to characters and events from earlier books. Having forgotten what the earlier books in the series were about AGAIN, I now have to reread the series, as I want to make sure I understand the storylines in the newer books. I’ve read HUNDREDS of books since 2011. Even though I reread the series in 2014, I remember only vague details.

Still, I enjoyed reading “City of bones” for the third time, traveling along with Clary, her best friend Simon, handsome Jace, and all the other characters in the Shadowhunter world. Seeing New York City through their viewpoint is an eye opener, while their various adventures had me on the edge of my seat.

I still highly recommend this book and series for ages 14 and over.

“Breaking Dawn: Twilight #4” Stephenie Meyer

Rated 5 stars ***** 2008. Little, Brown and Company. 756 p.

BreakingDawnThis last book in the incredibly successful “Twilight” series is so much better than the others. Of course everyone knows Bella and Edward get married, as that was so inevitable. What wasn’t expected is her sudden pregnancy, and what happens because of that pregnancy, which is the reason for the book. Her entrance into the world of vampires has been expected since “Twilight,” but new things about this world are revealed to readers, which are very unexpected.

“Breaking dawn” breaks new ground in that Bella is much more self-assured and, though she does have a few insecurities, I think she’s finally grown up. There is a lot more laugh out loud humor, especially from Jacob, that will keep readers chuckling. The love between her and Edward is so much more pronounced, which shows me that I was right in choosing him over Jacob.

It’s interesting Meyer left the ending a little open ended, as if she expected to continue the not-quite-over conflict in another book. However, it’s been 9 years and nothing else has been written, so I guess she left it to the reader’s imagination to come up with our own sequel. That’s too bad. I would’ve liked the series to continue, and to have had some unanswered questions be answered. Goodbye Edward. I’ll miss you.

Now that I’ve reread the entire book series, I’m off to watch the movie series again. Can’t get enough of Robert Pattison aka Edward.

Recommended for ages 14 and older.