The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare
Please note, at the time I am writing this, I am on chapter 13 of City of Lost Souls. I feel that I have a good enough feel for how the book is going to review the series overall.
I started this series from a comment to my Sister-in-law of… ‘If the movie is halfway decent I’ll give the series a try…’ Little did I know that as the series progressed, I would find myself with more and more issues with the books. The books are well written, and Cassandra Clare is well spoken in her writing. Unlike Suzanne Collins (the Hunger Games) and Stephanie Meyer (Twilight) my issues come not from the writing, but more from the second reason I disliked the Twilight books so much… the ‘but I love him’ complex. (Remind me to transfer my review of the Twilight Saga over at some time).
Jace is hot and cold with Claire through the entire series, and that is said without the Brother/Sister aspect of books 1-3. The whole thing of the Brother/Sister and the way Jace treats Claire, if it occurred in real life, it would have any sane person running as fast as they could in the opposite direction from the guy. In City of Fallen Angels, Claire justifies Jace’s inattentiveness of her, and avoidance of her. She’s in love with him, and it’s just stress. In the City of Lost Souls, the entire book is Claire justifying her relationship with Jace because it’s him (body), but it’s not him (mind)… and he could never hurt me… even after he cuts her, kidnaps her, and sets a permanent rune that ‘speaks of dominance and of submission’ to her.
It figuratively drives me up a wall at how any girl/woman can justify being with an awful human being (or in the case of Twilight, non human), all because she loves him… When will we stop idolizing these types of relationships in not only literature, but also film, music and TV. We have girls and women in abusive relationships struggling to get out, and we justify the actions of the men who beat them, and abuse them in pop culture. We idolize the abuse. We worship the sickos. These women are afraid to leave, and for good reason. Who would stand up for them, when our culture at every turn encourages the men to behave the way they do.
The other issues I have are with morality. It’s not only the GLBT characters, but just the fact that Clare promotes immorality, and complete lack of self respect in the females. There is NOTHING wrong with writing sex into books, that’s why we have Romance novels… but in a series touted as YA fiction, we need to promote morality to the youth. In a world where more pregnancies occur in young women under the age of 18, than any other age group combined, we need to focus on teaching young women that it is respectable to maintain their virginity until after marriage. Isabelle who is touted in the books as promiscuous, and willing to tumble into bed with anyone her parents would disapproving of, only because she feels that she can’t trust men due to her father’s affair. The whole logic behind her actions makes absolutely NO SENSE.
The series is original, and honestly has helped me with my writing; however as you can see from above, I just personally have too many issues with the books. Overall the series rates a 2.5 stars.