Out of the shadows comes the epic conclusion to the well-known story of Shadowhunters in Cassandra Clare’s new book, “Queen of Air and Darkness.”
This third and final book is part of the “The Dark Artifices” series, an extension of the popular young adult “Mortal Instrument” series. Cassandra Clare, a No. 1 New York Times best-selling author, has captured young audiences for years with her enthralling stories of Shadowhunters — those with mundane and human blood. They protect the Mortal World, Down World and Shadow World from demons.
After multiple attempts at movies and TV show spin-offs, nothing compares to reading the words directly from Clare’s fingertips.“Queen of Air and Darkness” is the mystical world we need to help us escape from our mundane world.
Released on Dec. 4, the novel contains three sections: Feel No Sorrow, Thule, and Lady Vengeance. “Queen of Air and Darkness” picks up where “Lord of Shadows” left off. After the unexpected death of two supporting characters, the first section of the book investigates loss and how grief affects a close-knit family like the Blackthorns.
Intensely purposeful and filled to the brim with imagery, Clare’s writing extracts the emotional unraveling that is grief. With her words, we take a step into Julian’s mind — an older brother and figurehead of the Blackthorn family — as he looks back on the death of whom he has raised since their parents’ death years prior.
The imagery in Clare’s words helps us feel what Julian is feeling — the morbid truth of loss.
“As he hurried towards his room, fear tapped against the outside of his consciousness, howling to be let in and acknowledged, like skeleton hands scratching at a window,” Clare wrote.
After the loss of the two Shadowhunters, the main conflict takes hold. With an abundance of characters, everyone has their own agenda and a conflict they are trying to solve. Emma and Julian, the main protagonists, jump between trying to break their Parabatai bond and finding Annabel. These conflicts are the main two that drive the novel through webs of heart-wrenching edge-of-your-seat scenes.
Clare continues to bring forth all the wit and sass we got from Jace Herondale in “The Mortal Instruments.” Each change in point of view brings a different personality, with each character having their own unique views and voices.
This book is highly praised and recommended by readers, but it does not start here. The best way to dive headfirst into the world of Shadowhunters is by starting at the beginning with “The Mortal Instruments” series. Followed by her prequel series, “The Infernal Devices,” an origin story of the lineage of past Shadowhunters, ancestors of those famous names we see in “The Mortal Instruments” and “Queen of Air and Darkness.”
This novel is attractive to young audiences because the characters are their age. The characters act on this question: what are you willing to do to keep your friends, relationships and family safe? This sometimes puts the characters themselves at risk, but knowing that they will be helping those they love, encourages them to act.
“I wanted to tell a story about characters at that crucial life stage just between adolescence and adulthood, where your choices determine the kind of person you’re going to be rather than reflecting who you already are,” Clare said.
For more information about the Shadowhunter stories, origin and extended series, visit http://www.cassandraclare.com.