“Nobody calls me ‘blondie’ and keeps their kneecaps.”
Blurb (Goodreads)- In a secret world where half-angel warriors are sworn to fight demons, parabatai is a sacred word.
A parabatai is your partner in battle. A parabatai is your best friend. Parabatai can be everything to each other—but they can never fall in love.
Emma Carstairs is a warrior, a Shadowhunter, and the best in her generation. She lives for battle. Shoulder to shoulder with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, she patrols the streets of Los Angeles, where vampires party on the Sunset Strip, and faeries—the most powerful of supernatural creatures—teeter on the edge of open war with Shadowhunters. When the bodies of humans and faeries turn up murdered in the same way Emma’s parents were when she was a child, an uneasy alliance is formed. This is Emma’s chance for revenge—and Julian’s chance to get back his brother Mark, who is being held prisoner by the faerie Courts. All Emma, Mark, and Julian have to do is solve the murders within two weeks…and before the murderer targets them.
Their search takes Emma from sea caves full of sorcery to a dark lottery where death is dispensed. And each clue she unravels uncovers more secrets. What has Julian been hiding from her all these years? Why does Shadowhunter Law forbid parabatai to fall in love? Who really killed her parents—and can she bear to know the truth?
Thoughts- The first section of this review will be spoiler free! I will warn you before I go into spoilers so feel free to read even if you haven’t read it (FOR NOW).
I’m never disappointed by anything Cassandra Clare writes in the Shadowhunter world and Lady Midnight was no exception to that fact. Once the book got started, I fell completely in love with it. I loved getting to know the Blackthorns (since we haven’t done much with their family besides Tatiana, who was really only a cameo) and the abundance of Blackthorn children did grow to have their own distinct personalities.
The story was totally different then the beginning of her other series because we start out with a totally badass Shadowhunter protagonist rather than a new character figuring out who they are (aka Tessa and Clary). The story flowed together exceptionally well, and I’m so mad I didn’t figure out the twist before the reveal, but we’ll get there. I also love Emma as a lead. She’s fierce and has a bit of spunk, which is refreshing compared to Clare’s previous heroines. Christina and Julian also balance out Emma’s personality quite well because she is so headstrong, it’s nice to read from someone who is calm and collected like Christina.
Of course we have some reappearing characters who we’ve heard from in the past (I won’t say who because that’s a spoiler) who has an interesting twist in the dynamic of the family. Speaking of family, I adore this one. The bond that they all have, especially with Julian and the kids; reading how he stepped up to the responsibility after the death of his parents is heartbreaking. Ty and Livvy are such fun additions to the crew, they both have distinctly different personalities but you can tell how much the twins rely on each other. Clare also did a fantastic job of writing about Ty’s autism. It’s not often that you see a main character, especially in YA fantasy with something like autism, yet Clare nails it. Drusilla didn’t get much screen time throughout the book, so I hope she gets more in the next books because I think she seems like a fun, quirky character. Tavvy is still only seven or so, but even he’s a valued addition to the story.
The only reason this is getting four stars and not five from me is because the beginning was a bit slow for me, and it took almost 200 pages for the story to truly pick up and make me want to read the entire thing in one night.
The tricky question… Can you read this without reading Clare’s other Shadowhunter novels? The short answer is yes. While you’ll be able to grasp the story there is a lot of inside references to her other series, so to get the full effect of this book I do believe it’s important to at least read TMI, but preferably both TMI and TID.
SPOILERS AHEAD. Do not read if you haven’t read Lady Midnight and possibly Clare’s other series if you don’t want to be spoiled!
Okay. Okay. This was so intense you guys. I want the next book now, and this next section is going to be me rambling and basically spilling all my feelings.
I’m quite proud of how cohesive the non-spoiler part is.
First of all, I am SO mad that I couldn’t put together that Malcolm was the evil guy behind everything. He was a warlock! Warlocks are suppose to help out and be good. Cassandra Clare I trusted you. BUT I’m so not mad that is was him because what a plot twist. When everything started coming together, about Annabel and Malcolm, I nearly died.
But here’s the real question. Who is Annabel, who are her parents?? I don’t think she’s Tatiana daughter (although wasn’t Tatiana pregnant in CP2 or am I remembering that wrong?) because we would’ve heard about her in TLH. So maybe she is one of TLHs character’s daughters… Possibly Jesse blackthorn? We know he probably marries Lucie Herondale so is that where the Blackthorn brown hair came from?
Let’s talk Emma and Julian and this whole deal. First of all, I’m not opposed that Jemma, I’m really not. Yet, I still don’t like them as much as I love Tessa/Will/Jem just because those characters will forever be my favorite. I don’t know if you all noticed, but after the whole beach ordeal when Julian and Emma are talking about the fact that they didn’t use protection (no hilarious condom in Hell like Jace) and Emma said she had a rune for that. There’s runes for birth control in the Shadowhunter world?? I died of laughter. Overall, I’m just not a big fan of forbidden love when it’s not a Romeo/Juliet type of forbidden love. I don’t know why, they just frustrate me when reading them.
And the prodigal Mark returns! Mark definitely had his ups and downs in terms of character likability for me, but his growth was phenomenal. I hope we return to the Seelie (or maybe even the Unseelie) court in the next books because that would just flesh out Mark as a character even more. His faerie tendencies and his battle with Shadowhunter/Faerie was crushing and emotional. But they kids acceptance of their brother again was so sweet. Mark and Kieran’s story also has to come up again, right?
Also, Kit freaking Herondale. Ah my favorite surname returns! I got real confused though when Tessa said Christopher Johnathon Herondale because my mind switched the two first names into Johnathon Christopher and I was like “resurrected Sebastian??” but no, all clear on that front. I do want to know more about what’s going on with his story, so that’s exciting. In general, every single mention of Tessa and Jem or anything hinting at the Infernal Devices timeline/series I was tearing up at. I love all grown-up and mature Tessa, she’s such a queen.
On a totally random note, has anyone else noticed that warlocks always have four letter last names? Magnus Bane, Tessa Gray, Malcolm Fade, Catarina Loss, Ragnor Fell… Forget about a warlock mark, just see if they have a four letter surname. Problem solved.
The little ending story set placed in TMI world though. Simon and Izzy are getting married!! When Robert Lightwood showed up at the LA Institute and casually mentioned that he came from his daughter’s engagement party I was so excited.
Honestly there is too much to talk about from this book, so I’m going to stop before this gets too much longer. But definitely leave a comment letting me know what you thought about Lady Midnight! Did you see the big twist coming/guess who it was? What was your favorite part? I’d love to discuss.