“Lord of Shadows” by Cassandra Clare


artemisiconI wasn’t going to review this book, since it’s book two, and I like to review the beginning of a series and let people delve into it on their own. But a few things happened in this book that really impressed me.

It is the second book, after Lady Midnight, an extension of her Shadowhunter world. We are still following the same characters as the last book, but there are a few new faces added in.

This time the beginning of their story takes them into the land of fairy, which was interesting to see because most of her stories take place on the city around the Institute, and in Idris, Shadowhunter home land. So, for the story to take place in fairy, it’s extending her world a little bit more.

Clare doesn’t shy away from any emotions, and with her new books, she doesn’t shy away from any social issues. With everything happening in the States, it’s easy to find material for socially impacting issues. There is a unit within the Shadowhunter world that wants to make the world great like it used to be where Shadowhunters rule and humans and downworlders serve. Also known as a world that never existed. They are trying to pass laws that control how, when, and where warlocks use their magic, amongst other things, and every downworlder will need to go on record with names and information about what they are (think x-men 1). It all sounds frighteningly familiar. But in the book, there is hope because there are a lot of people who believe in the current ways.  So it is up to our protagonists to carry on that hope.

On top of many characters dealing with mental issues, actual teenage and adult emotions (that some writers believe teens don’t deal with), there is one growing topic that is showing up in some YA. There is a character, I won’t mention which, that is transgendered. She mentions how she has to keep her true identity hidden because of the rules of Shadowhunters, and because of that, has to stay kind of under the radar, even if it means putting others in danger. The thing that impressed me the most, is the person whom she was telling, took a second to take it in, and then made it a non-issue. They deal with enough in this society to not have people they love turn on them.

I think worldly issues like this need to be in YA books, and younger. Studies have found that kids who read Harry Potter are more open minded, politically involved, and understand that the media does lie. Books like this, and Rick Riordan are now expanding on the good work JK Rowlings Harry Potter has started.

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