Lady Midnight (Dark Artifices, #1)

by Cassandra Clare

4.04 of 5 stars 23 ratings • 10 reviews • 67 shelved
Book cover for Lady Midnight

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Lady Midnight (Dark Artifices, #1)

by Cassandra Clare

4.04 of 5 stars 23 ratings • 10 reviews • 67 shelved

The Shadowhunters of Los Angeles star in Lady Midnight, the first novel in Cassandra Clare's newest series, THE DARK ARTIFICES, a sequel to the internationally bestselling MORTAL INSTRUMENTS series.

It's been five years since the events of City of Heavenly Firethat brought the Shadowhunters to the brink of oblivion. Emma Carstairs is no longer a child in mourning, but a young woman bent on discovering what killed her parents and avenging her losses.

Together with her parabatai Julian Blackthorn, Emma must learn to trust her head and her heart as she investigates a demonic plot that stretches across Los Angeles, from the Sunset Strip to the enchanted sea that pounds the beaches of Santa Monica. If only her heart didn't lead her in treacherous directions...

Making things even more complicated, Julian's brother Mark - who was captured by the faeries five years ago - has been returned as a bargaining chip. The faeries are desperate to find out who is murdering their kind-and they need the Shadowhunters' help to do it. But time works differently in faerie, so Mark has barely aged and doesn't recognize his family. Can he ever truly return to them? Will the faeries really allow it?

Glitz, glamours, and Shadowhunters abound in this heartrending opening to Cassandra Clare's Dark Artifices series.

  • ISBN10 1442468351
  • ISBN13 9781442468351
  • Publish Date 8 March 2016
  • Publish Status Active
  • Imprint Margaret K. McElderry Books
  • Format Hardcover
  • Pages 688
  • Language English


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Leigha 3 of 5 stars
Emma Carstairs attempts to uncover the mystery behind her parents deaths in this young adult urban fantasy novel.

Cassandra Clare missed her calling as a soap opera writer. I’ve read the first three Mortal Instruments books and the entire Infernal Devices series and still the soap opera twists keep coming – “I love you, but we’re brother and sister;” “You’re my best friend, but we’re in love with the same person;” “I can only trust two people in this wor…oh my god, one of them betrayed me!” I sometimes get the feeling the plot points dictate the ending of the stories rather than character arcs. And how many love triangles do I have to sit through? HOW MANY?

While I’m not crazy about the plot, the characters and world-building are nuanced. Most of the characters had clear motivations and drive. I really did enjoy all of the characters, especially Emma and the Blackthorn siblings. The romance between Julian and Emma felt believable and passionate, but I felt most of the drama between the two was artificially created to keep them separated. As for the other love stories, I felt most of them were pretty meh. I’m not a fan of characters from the original series making an appearance in spin-off books, but it was not over done in this novel.

Overall, I suspect fans of her other series will enjoy this book too. She does improve as a writer the longer she writes, and you can tell she has spent a lot of time creating this unique, complex world. However, I’m just not invested in these dramatic, angst filled plot lines. I will not be continuing this series.

tl;dr Complex characters and intricate world building didn’t save me from enjoying the soap opera “oh my god” plot.

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Artemis 1 of 5 stars
Sigh. Not sure why I listened to my friend on this recommendation, swearing up and down that Clare has gotten better at everything I hated about the Mortal Instruments series. I will say that Infernal Devices is probably my favorite series of hers. Lady Midnight is just BORING. I breezed through this in a night – nothing about the forbidden love or story line was engaging. The story and characters felt so repeated.

Avatar for kozbisa

Oh, how wonderful it was to be back in the Shadowhunter world! Once I was back there, I realized how much I missed it. I fell in love with the Blackthorn family, and Julian was such a beautiful hero, who loved his family more than himself. It was fun having characters from TMI and TID being a part of this series, and seeing how their lives have changed over the 5 years since the war. What struck me the most in this book, compared to the other Shadowhunter books, was it was such an epic romance. The other books had romance, but I never felt the romance was as prominent or swoony as it is in this book. I loved some things in the last chapter, and other things, not so much, but I know Clare will not let me down, and I will eagerly await the next book.

Cassandra Clare put so many gorgeous words in this book. I can tell by my highlighting, that I was totally absorbed by the love aspects. I am going to leave you with some of them:

"Laws are meaningless, child," Malcolm said in a low voice that somehow still carried. "There is nothing more important than love. And no law higher."

that the idea of losing Jules wrenched out of her: that the sky would go dark forever, that there would never be solid ground again.

I breathe when you breathe, I bleed when you bleed, I'm yours and you're mine, you've always been mine, and I have always, always belonged to you!

I love you, Julian Blackthorn. I love you more than starlight.

No law can control our feelings.

everyone who lives under this roof, whether they are bound by blood or not, we are tied together by an invisible net of love and duty and loyalty and honor. That is what it means to be a Shadowhunter. Family

There was beauty in the idea of freedom, but it was an illusion. Every human heart was chained by love.

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Minx 4 of 5 stars
What have I come to expect from Cassandra Clare? Utterly complete awesomeness with a knife stuck in my heart at the end. This was a fabulous spin off from the Mortal Instruments series. Action packed, great characters, awesome world development, lust, heartbreak, and agony! There is really nothing that I can fault except my feeling at the end: "well that ending just sucked!" I get it people, it part of a series, but damn could she not slice my heart open and watch it bleed??


This book has been sitting on my shelf for three months. I have looked at it and looked at it. To read or not to read was my question. Well as part of my TBR for June I put this book on there because it forced me to read it. I know many of you are like “forced?” whhaaaat? Yes, forced because Cassandra Clare is an amazing writer but the storylines have elements that tend to drive me a little bonkers. I will warn you that there may be some spoilers below BUT I will try to keep them as generic as possible.

Ok, I know this is a YA book and I get that but one thing that left me going hmmm was that CC has the most amazing attention to detail but when two characters entered into a sex scene I honestly had no idea. The scene was written as “her hand cupped the bare skin above his waistband of his jeans,” (notice above implying jeans on) then it goes on about his need yada yada and then something is happening, not quite sure BUT there is no mention of any clothes coming off. Ummm, what? When did he take his clothes off? Is she at least partly naked? I had to go back and read and ask myself “Did someone just have sex?” Honesty I am reading the scene again and I am still wondering were they just kissing?? I know they had sex because they remarked on it later, so ½ star off for scenes like this. I get it YA and all, but if you are going to have lots of M/F action, M/M action and then discussion about the sex going on, well make the scenes a bit more detailed so that I do not miss what just happened.

Why the other ½ star off? A bazillion love triangles. Everyone had one; I think they were giving them away, two for the price of one. There were even love triangles being created artificially. Not my cup of tea, just too many triangles going on. The final part of my feelings on this book is that I was not in love with anyone of the characters. Yep, let the hate mail start now. After reading this book I was thinking about it and the only emotions I felt was disgust and resentment for how the story ended…nooooooo, say it isn’t soooooooo. I did not love a certain character so much that I had, just had to, read the next book in the series; there is no real drive to find out what else happens. The cliffhanger provided me with a really pretty view and it is beautiful. Unfortunately, the trip to get there was just long and I kept tripping over love triangles and missing turns because they were not marked properly.

My final thoughts: An amazingly written fantasy with many well developed characters. The story will grip you and it is fast paced, hold on to your seat! This is going to be fantastic series with many die-hard fans! I recommend for anyone looking for a good fantasy series that has angels, fae, demons, and the occasional vampire.

Avatar for thebookdisciple

I loved this book. Like, so much love!! It started off slow but I think Clare's books usually do. Then you get into the romances... At first I was like
"Oh that was NOT the relationship I expected (Mark)" and then it becomes a bit of a triangle...and by the end, its a freaking pentagon!!! Gah! And that ending...while the major action is wrapped up the relationships are TOTALLY not!
The narrator for this book was seriously perfect. SPOT ON!

Avatar for chelssik

Chelsea 3 of 5 stars
Quick Thoughts
1. Not bad for a continuation of a very long series. I am getting a little bored of the same world though.
2. I liked these new characters but they felt almost the same as our old ones. Part of me wishes we didn't see our old characters at all in this series.
3. The plot was the best part. It was a little mysterious and it was fun trying to figure out some of the riddles.
4. I'll probably continue on with the series but if we don't see some different things happen then I'll most likely get bored and stop.
5. I find Cassandra Clare's writing never gets any better. I found there were A LOT of really awkward lines that really had no purpose in the book. We saw it with the condom line in CoHF and we see that same awkwardness here in this book.

Avatar for divaboooknerd

Kelly 5 of 5 stars

Any preconceived notions you had about Lady Midnight being just another Shadowhunters series, burn them to the ground. This. is. Incredible. The humour, the sass and the likable characters, I had to check the cover several times just to remember that this is actually Cassandra Clare.

Check out our discussion about all things Lady Midnight over at Diva Booknerd

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liz089 5 of 5 stars
Read more about this review and others on my blog Freyja Eats Books

Only one thing though before I start, if you’re new to Cassandra Clare ! I have to emphasize this. Don’t, and I really mean DON’T read this book if you haven’t read the other series. You’ll miss out so much. So don’t be stubborn, and take the time to do this the right way. It deserves to be read the right way. So go and read The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices first. Don’t read this one before you know what happened before this all came to be.

How exciting !! The first part in a new Cassandra Clare series: The Dark Artifices, once again featuring the Shadowhunters. It will consist of three books in total, with a companion book series The Last Hours also consisting of three books that will be released in the next couple of (unfortunately) years.

I mean, how could I not pre-order this one and read it as soon as I got it ? It feels like it has been AGES since I held City of Heavenly Fire in my hands. But looking back, it has been almost two years since this one came out.. Which is very long in book years !! But not the end of the world of course. These books are very thorough and well-researched, it is completely understandable that she needs a bit longer to write them. But well..

I have no other way to describe this book as AMAZING and BRILJANT. It is just PERFECT. I have NOTHING I would want to change, it had just the right amount of everything that I search in a book. The moment I started on this book I fell right back into the world Cassandra Clare had created years back, I felt right at home. It made me realize how much I missed this world and the writing of Cassandra Clare. She has such a beautiful way of writing that pulls me in. When I picked this book up I was in her world and no longer had any concerns about the outside world. I was just gone.

It had just the right amount of love and romance, it held me completely captive throw-out the entire book. And not just between the main characters, but between others as well. I’m very curious how things will develop further on !

Because I already knew most of the characters from the previous books, it felt really great to read about them again a couple of years later. To see how they dealt with the aftermath of the Dark War and how it shaped them.
Emma is just as fierce as she was before and I really loved her. She was very selfless (sometimes a bit too much), but I loved her bravery and sarcasm. Julian compensated her amazingly in that way, being the Yin to her Yang. He’s very responsible, and I felt sad for him from the beginning. He had to give up so much to take care of the rest of his family, without any outside help…
Oh and how I loved Ty, he is such a character ! I love his personality, and how he lives in his own world. Really hope things will go great for him in the future !!
And well, I really liked that Mark came back. I was so sad he had to go with the Hunt in the other series, and I loved that he came back and we got to find out what had happened to him while he was there. Would not mind to take a ride on his mount ^^

I could go on and on about the others.. But everybody was just great and I really liked all of them. Which, I think, is in part because she choose to use multiple narrators. It was not just Emma and Julian, but we saw the whole story from different points of view. It made the story more complete and we got to know more about the background of many characters.

And one of the most wonderful things ? It was not predictive ! Lately everything seems obvious after the first couple of characters, hell, sometimes even the first pages.. But this story had me completely mystified ! I did not know what would happen next, and it was a wonderful feeling to keep guessing but not knowing. I even had no idea who The Guardian was until the end !
And even though that is settled now, I still have many questions ! Like what is Diana’s deal ? And how will things go for Kit ? Can’t wait for the next instalment next year !

“Laws are meaningless, child,” Malcolm said in a low voice that somehow still carried. “There is nothing more important than love. And no law higher.”
“Emma sprang up the steps and peered in through one of the windows; she could see nothing but dark, smudged shapes. “No one home – oh!”
She jumped back a step as something flung itself against the window: a lumpy, hair-covered ball. Slime slicked the glass. Emma was already crouching, about to pull a stiletto from her boot. “What is it?” She straightened. “A Raum demon? A -?”
“I think it’s a mini poodle,” said Julian, the corner of his mouth twitching. “And I don’t think it is armed,” he added as she glanced down to stare accusingly at what was, yes, definitely a small dog, its face pressed to the glass. “I’m almost positive, in fact.”
“When you love someone, they become a part of who you are. They’re in everything you do. They’re in the air you breathe and the water you drink and the blood in your veins. Their touch stays on your skin and their voice stays in your ears and their thoughts stay in your mind. You know their dreams because their nightmares pierce your heart and their good dreams are your dreams too. And you don’t think they’re perfect, but you know their flaws, the deep-down truth of them, and the shadows of all their secrets, and they don’t frighten you away; in fact you love them more for it, because you don’t want perfect. You want them.”

So, I can’t find 5 Freyja’s enough to express how good this book is. This book is just of the scale.. So I would like to reward this book with 6 Freyja’s, because it just deserves nothing less. It is a perfect book, within a great world. I can find no flaws, and I can’t wait until the next book comes out ! Really dislike it that I have to wait for more than a year for the next book. But maybe I will re-read The Infernal Devices.. I don’t remember everything, and well.. it’s just an amazing series and I would totally recommend this to everyone !

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Stephanie 4 of 5 stars
what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what. what.