Book Review – Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare

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Title: Chain of Iron

Author: Cassandra Clare

Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books

Publication date: March 2nd, 2021


4/5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis

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.


“To love one another is to come as close as we ever can to being angels ourselves.”

Cassandra Clare, Chain of Iron

I reviewed Chain of Gold last year, so before reading this review you might want to check this out! I intend to keep this review spoiler free for those who haven’t started in this series yet who may want to some day.

Chain of Iron picks up shortly after Chain of Gold ended. Our friends are all in the same position, with some new alliances and dramas cropping up (as is expected in CC books!). I am still having a hard time keeping track of who is who in this series, though this book has made it somewhat easier. Still, I encourage everyone to have a character guide handy when reading! I felt the plot was more interesting and moved along faster than the first book, which made for this book to be a more enjoyable experience. I did find some middle child issues that are normally prominent in second books of trilogies – but honestly that’s hard to be helped. The ending leaves you on the prerequisite cliffhanger that CC is known for, so you’ll be waiting in anticipation for March 2022 to come around.

So, as in most CC books there is some sort of romance and she has experimented with different types of relationships before (looking at you, The Mortal Instruments) – but I am not a fan of where these relationships are going. I have high hopes for some better endings for the friends in Chain of Thorns, but I’m really going to need that book to blow my mind to feel like this series was up to the normal CC standard.

I still have The Last Hours as my least favorite trio in her Shadowhunters world, but I am ready and willing for Chain of Thorns to change my mind.

Happy reading, folks!

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