Newest Clare novel brings forth a dark conclusion
Cassandra Clare has done it again. Her newest novel, titled “Queen of Air and Darkness,” has, in short, given readers exactly what they were hoping for.
The conclusion to “The Dark Artifices” trilogy, released in early December 2018, was long awaited by fans of Clare’s “Shadowhunter Chronicles.” The collection of books follow a race of angel-human hybrids called Nephilim, or Shadowhunters, who protect the world from demons and monsters. “The Dark Artifices” is the third finalized series in the chronicles. In the beginning of the series, we are reintroduced to Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorn, two Shadowhunters who were first seen in Clare’s “The Mortal Instruments” as children who had to deal with the consequences of war. Now 17 years old, Emma is trying to avenge her parents’ deaths while also helping Julian attempt to keep his broken family together. The stunning conclusion to their story picks up right where its predecessor, “Lord of Shadows,” left off – tragedy settling over the Blackthorn family and the Clave on the edge of civil war. On top of all of this, Emma and Julian’s forbidden love has the power to destroy not just them, but the people they love dearest. They must put all of this aside in order to save their world before their love consumes them and evil takes control.
This book weighs in at a whopping 880 pages but manages to hold the reader’s attention for every page. The alternating points of view are not as confusing as it first seems, and Clare does a fantastic job of intertwining these many subplots; not just with the main plot, but with the other two prequel series fans have grown to love. With descriptive writing and complex vocabulary, this book challenges the reader while still being comprehensible.
Clare’s wit and humor also shines through with comedic lines like, “I forgot my weapons. But I do have this fork ... You are so forked.” Yet she also includes eloquent one-liners like, “As we all have an infinite capacity to make mistakes, we all have an infinite capacity for forgiveness.” Clare also beautifully weaves in folklore and mythology that adds to the complexity of themes like good versus evil, discrimination and racism and importance of family.
While this fantasy book also falls into the category of romance, the filial love in this book is just as prominent as the romantic love. This emphasis on affection will resonate with anyone who has relied on family and friends to get through dark times.
So “The Dark Artifices” trilogy has come to an end ... or has it? Apparently, a series entitled “The Wicked Powers” is set to be released in the next few years starring “The Dark Artifices” favorites like Ty, Kit and Dru. There is a chance we are not quite done with the Blackthorn clan yet.
Clare includes this touching line in “Lord of Shadows,” the second book in the trilogy: “The story that I love you, it has no end.” Perhaps this line could apply to the reader, and the series as well? Since readers adore these stories, it makes it quite hard to say goodbye to “The Dark Artifices” and the many characters that readers have fallen in love with. Thankfully, it seems that readers might not have to say goodbye just yet.