Chain of Iron
Author: Cassandra Clare
Pages: 656 pages
Genre: YA Fantasy
Published: March 2021
Rating: 5 Stars!
The Shadowhunters must catch a killer in Edwardian London in this dangerous and romantic sequel to the #1 New York Times bestselling novel Chain of Gold, from New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Cassandra Clare. Chain of Iron is a Shadowhunters novel.
Cordelia Carstairs seems to have everything she ever wanted. She’s engaged to marry James Herondale, the boy she has loved since childhood. She has a new life in London with her best friend Lucie Herondale and James’s charming companions, the Merry Thieves. She is about to be reunited with her beloved father. And she bears the sword Cortana, a legendary hero’s blade.
But the truth is far grimmer. James and Cordelia’s marriage is a lie, arranged to save Cordelia’s reputation. James is in love with the mysterious Grace Blackthorn whose brother, Jesse, died years ago in a terrible accident. Cortana burns Cordelia’s hand when she touches it, while her father has grown bitter and angry. And a serial murderer is targeting the Shadowhunters of London, killing under cover of darkness, then vanishing without a trace.
Together with the Merry Thieves, Cordelia, James, and Lucie must follow the trail of the knife-wielding killer through the city’s most dangerous streets. All the while, each is keeping a shocking secret: Lucie, that she plans to raise Jesse from the dead; Cordelia, that she has sworn a dangerous oath of loyalty to a mysterious power; and James, that he is being drawn further each night into the dark web of his grandfather, the arch-demon Belial. And that he himself may be the killer they seek.
I flew through this book, partially on purpose but I also didn’t expect to read it quite as quickly as I did! As always Cassandra Clare has written an extremely addictive book that I could not put down!
Cordelia has remained my favourite character throughout these two books. She is an extremely strong character and I admire her approach to everything. Apart from what happened at the end, but I don’t want to talk about that! James and Cordelia are engaged and despite it being a lie, there were some extremely cute moments that took place after their wedding. It is clear from Chain of Gold that James is being manipulated by Grace and the bracelet that she has had him wear since they were younger. James is constantly fighting himself throughout this book as he is clearly attracted and in love with Cordelia, yet he believes he is in love with Grace. I adored the relationship between James and Cordelia, and they spend a lot of time in each other’s company as they now live together. They decide to play a game each night and the winner of the game gets to ask a question, which I thought was an adorable thing. There was so much tension between this couple and I couldn’t help but scream out loud at things they did.
‘And I was not afraid. I knew I would be able to come home, because of you. That you would lead me back. You are my constant star, Daisy.’
Lucie and Jesse’s storyline was also central to this novel. After the events of Chain of Gold, Lucie is quite clearly in love with Jesse, and she works together with Grace to find a way to bring him back to life. Lucie and Grace wasn’t quite a friendship I could get behind and I don’t really know if they were friends! Lucie and Cordelia are meant to be becoming parabatai, yet there are a lot of secrets being kept from each other! But I suppose the same could be said for James and Matthew. I adored Lucie and Jesse’s relationship and it was so bittersweet as Jesse is a ghost. I loved reading when I got to a section about these two characters!
‘Don’t confuse what you feel with the stories you’re writing. You do not love me. It is not possible.’
The Merry Thieves, Cordelia and Lucie take it upon themselves to track a killer, who is only murdering Shadowhunters. During one fight, Cordelia’s sword Cortana cuts her and at another point, it burns her. This was so surprising to read and created a subplot about Cordelia as she questions whether she is worthy of the legendary sword. As always, there are quite a few subplots which don’t necessarily add to the overall plot, but are necessary to me as a fan who loves all these characters. The growing relationship between Thomas and Alistair was one of my favourites, and I am desperate to see more of them! I am also extremely intrigued by Anna and Ariadne. Matthew is such a great character but I feel like he is constantly setting himself up to be heartbroken and sad. He opens up more in this book, but there is a lot more that he and James need to talk about.
‘We have talked so much of travel, I wanted to give you the world.’
I had so many feelings throughout this book, and I feel like I took a ride on an emotional rollercoaster. I really wish I didn’t read the last 50 pages though as it majorly frustrated me and I can’t believe I am going to have to wait a year until my feelings can be resolved. I was not a fan of the ending and it was not at all what I wanted to happen! Despite the ending, it was a really good read and I can’t wait to read it again in a year when I don’t have to wait any longer to find out what happens next!
Have you read this, what did you think?