TITLE: City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments #4)
AUTHOR: Cassandra Clare
PUBLISHER: Walker Books
RELEASED DATE: April 5, 2011
PAPERBACK: 424 pages
GENRE: Urban Fantasy
PRECEDED BY: City of Glass
FOLLOWED BY: City of Lost Souls
SYNOPSIS: The Mortal War is over, and sixteen-year-old Clary Fray is back home in New York, excited about all the possibilities before her. She’s training to become a Shadowhunter and to use her unique power. Her mother is getting married to the love of her life. Downworlders and Shadowhunters are at peace at last. And – most importantly of all – she can finally call Jace her boyfriend.
But nothing comes without a price.
Someone is murdering Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine’s Circle, provoking tensions between Downworlders and Shadowhunters that could lead to a second bloody war. Clary’s best friend, Simon, can’t help her. His mother just found out that he’s a vampire and now he’s homeless. Everywhere he turns, someone wants him on their side – along with the power of the curse that’s wrecking his life. And they’re willing to do anything to get what they want. At the same time he’s dating two beautiful, dangerous girls – neither of whom knows about the other one.
When Jace begins to pull away from Clary without explaining why, she is forced to delve into the heart of a mystery whose solution reveals her worst nightmare: She herself has set in motion a terrible chain of events that could lead to her losing everything she loves. Even Jace.
Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge. The stakes are higher than ever in City of Fallen Angels.
Theme: Whenever it’s time to do a book review for The Mortal Instruments, I’m always at a loss for words! The series is so diverse with its shocking scenes, the loving relationships/friendships, and the sorrows.. Just thinking about everything has my head spinning. But, I love it! I love The Mortal Instruments! Self-esteem themes are all throughout book four, dealing with self-assurance, self-confidence, and self-pity. These themes are played within the slow pace storyline—mostly during the time the characters are bonding—as they deal with their life issues with one another. I know a few people who did not like the pace of this novel, but I actually enjoyed it. It gave us a break from all the rushed, action-packed events from beginning to end. I found I was able to go more into depth with the characters since Cassandra Clare provided readers with useful knowledge about them and their self-awareness. I also saw many of the characters fears and weaknesses compared to the last three books. Their compassion for one another was more prominent and visible in COFA.
Plot: Luke and Jocelyn are engaged, Clary and Jace are finally together, Simon is unsure if he is dating Isabelle and Mia, and Jace is painfully avoiding Clary. Of course, I was drawn in at the beginning, and as I continued to read, the laughs were intensified—especially the Jace and Simon bromance scenes—but the novel was still slow. Once I got halfway into the book, things began to get interesting. For me, the suspense took place about a little more than halfway towards the end of the book. Love was really the main focus all throughout the novel as well. I was able to see what “love” truly meant for most of the main characters.
Clary→ Clary was annoying in COFA. She seemed too self-absorbed with her issues, and she believed she could do everything herself.
Simon→ We’re not in Clary’s perspective that often, but are mostly in Simon’s. I was drawn to Simon’s character in a way I never was before in the first three books. I had sympathy for him and his problems. He felt alone, like as if he was an outsider in his group of ”friends”, and it really showed and concerned me about his well-being in the near future. Cassandra Clare had touched on this issue a few times in book three, but I love how she gave us more insight into Simon’s feelings in this novel.
I did not see any character development in COFA. But once I think about it more, I believe I did not see any growth in the characters because the novel was mainly focused on the vulnerable side of the characters, so readers could get to know them more.
Style & Setting: The story is set in New York, six weeks after the epic battle in Alicante. When Cassandra Clare would describe the scenery, I did not like reading all the description she gave us. It dragged the book along, and made it even slower. The simple scenes—for example, dining in a restaurant and going to dress fittings—I enjoyed reading. It showed how Shadowhunters are ordinary people when they are not dealing with demons and fighting, and such.
Overall, I enjoyed The COFA and will continue to read the series. The ending was not what I expected, and I have no clue where the Cassandra Clare is taking us now.
Book Cover: .5
Character Development/Plot: 2.4 out of 3
Interest: .7 out of 1
Imagery: .6 out of 1
Total: 4.2 stars