City of Lost Souls
By Cassandra Clare
Read by: Molly C. Quinn
May 8, 2012
Simon & Shuster (Simon Audio)
Reviewed: Audiobook from publisher
The demon Lilith has been destroyed and Jace has been freed from her captivity. But when the Shadowhunters arrive to rescue him, they find only blood and broken glass. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.
No magic the Clave can summon can locate either boy, but Jace cannot stay away—not from Clary. When they meet again Clary discovers the horror Lilith’s dying magic has wrought—Jace is no longer the boy she loved. He and Sebastian are now bound to each other, and Jace has become what he most feared: a true servant of Valentine’s evil. The Clave is determined to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. Will the Shadowhunters hesitate to kill one of their own?
Only a small band of Clary and Jace’s friends and family believe that Jace can still be saved — and that the fate of the Shadowhunters’ future may hinge on that salvation. They must defy the Clave and strike out on their own. Alec, Magnus, Simon and Isabelle must work together to save Jace: bargaining with the sinister Faerie Queen, contemplating deals with demons, and turning at last to the Iron Sisters, the reclusive and merciless weapons makers for the Shadowhunters, who tell them that no weapon on this earth can sever the bond between Sebastian and Jace. Their only chance of cutting Jace free is to challenge Heaven and Hell — a risk that could claim any, or all, of their lives.
And they must do it without Clary. For Clary has gone into the heart of darkness, to play a dangerous game utterly alone. The price of losing the game is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she even still trust him? Or is he truly lost? What price is too high to pay, even for love?
About the audiobook: Listening to CITY OF LOST SOULS was a long ride that I was more than willing to embark on. At over 16 hours of Cassie Clare goodness, I knew I was in for a real treat.
The book is appropriately read by a young lady that makes me feel as though Clary herself could be reading. I admit, her voice is what I hear in my head now when I think of Clary. But we all know that there are far, far more characters than just Clary in this story. When it comes to reading the male characters (such as Simon, Magnus, Alec, etc.) Molly does a commendable job, although no individual character is given a particularly distinct voice. At times, I had difficulty keeping track of who was speaking. But as the 16 hours of story went on, I became more in-tune to the subtle inflections that Molly gave to each character and it became easier to pick them out.
Overall, I believe that the audiobook would be perfect for teenagers listeners who want to continue their favorite series without feeling embarrassed by how the reader sounds. I would certainly love to listen to more of the series this way if given the opportunity.
As for the story: What can be said about Cassandra Clare’s THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS series? With more than 5 books released in the franchise and millions of copies sold, I don’t think that anything I say would deter readers. BUT, regardless, here are my two cents:
Admit it, The Mortal Instruments is a guilty pleasure for many of those who read it. Cassie knows how to cater to the needs of her main audience. You have the action, the adventure, the steamy love scenes, the hot guys, the gay couples, the video game/anime/manga references, and OH! the drama!! Cassie definitely knows how to build conflict, as well as how to build any type of scene imaginable and weave multiple plot lines throughout her books. Everything you have come to expect in a good Cassie Clare novel can be found here, and then some.
I appreciated that we saw more of the supporting characters and their interactions than we have seen in the previous books. Personally, I am one who gushes over the relationships between Alec and Magnus (yaoi, anyone?) and Simon and Isabelle (aw, geek love…) Some may miss the snarkiness of Jace in this installment, and that is not without reason. Jace certainly is not “Jace” in this book. But I had faith in Clary and fully believed she could “bring him back”. Whether or not she actually does in the end is for you to find out. But keep in mind that there is still one more book left in which the story could resolve itself. I wonder if book 6 will really be the last we see of Clary and co.? I doubt it. (Oh, and have your heard? We have to wait until 2014 for the next book anyway…)
If you’re one of the few people who HAVE NOT read this series yet, the audiobook is a great way to get into it. At darn near 500 pages (or more) a pop, just let Molly Quinn do the reading for you!
Audiobook: 4.5 stars
Story Grade: 4.5 stars