I’m not one for popular fiction or fantasy for that matter, so my expectations for this book were pretty low, given that I abandoned the City of Bones series only a few chapters in. However, after someone from my book recommendations Facebook group recommended this one to me after I mentioned that I was looking for books with strong friendships, I decided to give it a go. This was one of those books that was a quick read (for over 400 pages), and I’ll admit it was better than I originally thought.
After Tessa Gray is tricked and imprisoned by two shadowy characters for her mysterious abilities, she is rescued by a strange young man with even stranger markings on his skin. She soon learns that he is a shadowhunter who protects humans from a world that she never knew existed full of vampires, demons, nephilim, warlocks, and shapeshifters. She finds herself caught up in a mysterious plot and realizes that her abilities may be the key to uncovering it and protecting her new-found family. Set in the Victorian era, this book is part of the Infernal Devices series, a prequel trilogy to the popular Mortal Instruments series.
- Setting. I’m a sucker for books set in past eras, particularly the Victorian Era. I’m glad that this book had characters who were more genteel and proper rather than those who were more modern like in Mortal Instruments.
- Protagonist. Compared to the previous series, Tessa seemed to have more of a complexity about her and there was enough mystery about her backstory to keep me interested. Plus she had unique enough abilities to make her a valuable asset to the story.
- Strong friendships. For a teen book, I appreciated the maturity of the friendships throughout and the impacts they made toward the development of the plot. I like how the author made each character’s relationship unique to the protagonist.
- A lot of action. This can be a plus for some readers, but I’m not a fan of reading action scenes; I’d rather watch them on the big screen.
- Potential love triangle. This is what I always dread in teen fiction. When I say I love strong friendships in books, I mean friendships, not romances with every handsome character. While the friendships seem to be present and strong early-on in the series, I worry that the protagonist will eventually have to choose between “the bad-boy” and “the gentleman”.
As I continue through this series, I’m crossing my fingers that this story continues to be an engaging one with some strong friendships and likable characters!