Friday, August 23, 2019

Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare Review

Title: Queen of Air and Darkness
Author: Cassandra Clare
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Series: The Dark Artifices, book three
Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

                I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

                So, I’ll start this review by being completely honest: I’ve been avoiding this book since it came out last December, partly because I just wasn’t ready for it to end, and half because Lord of Shadows tore my soul to shreds. I’ve checked it out at my local library a few times, and had to return it almost every time. I couldn’t renew it anymore this time, so as soon as I was finished with Queen of Ruin, I pushed it to the top of my stack, figuring that I could no longer avoid it. This book took me a week and a half to finish, and I’ve been chewing on it for almost three weeks. To tell the truth, guys, I’m still not ready to put my feelings to paper. But I’ve been sitting on it long enough, and if I keep avoiding it, I won’t write it. This book is probably one of the most emotional and intense of Clare’s books, and the last book in The Dark Artifices series is one that I will never forget. I was absolutely blown away, and I’m so very happy and sad that it’s all over!

                Queen of Air and Darkness picks up where Lord of Shadows left off, with the Blackthorn family and Emma Carstairs shattered after a horribly traumatic death. Left reeling over it, Julian makes a heartbreaking decision. Emma is desperate to keep the only family she’s ever had together, and The Clave is dangerously teetering, on the brink of a bloody civil war among Shadowhunters. One part of the family heads to Los Angeles to discover the cause of a dangerous disease that is decimating the warlock race. Meanwhile, Emma and Julian must put the thoughts of their forbidden love aside as they journey to Faerie to retrieve The Black Volume of the Dead. But the secrets waiting for them within the Court are dark, dangerous, and powerful, and may tear the foundation of the Shadowhunters apart. Caught in a deadly race against time, they must save the world before the dark power of the parabatai curse destroys them and everyone they care about…

                This book, to be completely frank, absolutely destroyed me, which is why I avoided it so long. It was beautifully written, and I adored the black and white illustrations throughout. That was such a cool bonus! As with all sequels, it took me a little bit of time to remember what was happening. But the pacing was breakneck, and I was immediately absorbed in the novel. I also enjoyed all the different points of view; one of the things I love about Clare’s books is the scope of them. I also really liked all of the Easter eggs left throughout the book: appearances of other familiar faces, secrets that I didn’t get throughout the series until this book. I was totally spellbound by this mammoth book; counting the bonus material, it was over eight hundred pages. This book absolutely gutted me, emotionally: I was laughing, or straight up ugly crying throughout. Nonetheless, this book was a great ending to one of my favorite Cassandra Clare offerings, meaty and dark and tender, and full of surprises! Especially that ending. HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO ACCEPT THE END OF THIS WHEN IT ENDED LIKE THAT?! Come on, Cassandra, you’re killing me here! The bottom line: The last book in The Dark Artifices trilogy, Queen of Air and Darkness may be Cassandra Clare’s best book yet. Next on deck: No Beast So Fierce: The Terrifying True Story of the Champawat Tiger, the Deadliest Animal in History by Dane Huckelbridge!

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