Book News, Books, Movie News, Movies, News

First Look at Clary from the ‘Mortal Instruments’ Movie!

Fans of Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series are probably aware by now that there’s a movie in the works. Though the first film isn’t set to hit theaters until August 23rd of next year, the first glimpses of the characters we love are being revealed.

Today, Entertainment Weekly released the first official sneak peek photo from Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. Here’s Clary Fray, played by Lily Collins, showing off a shadowhunter rune:

Clary Fray, played by Lily Collins.

The author had this to say about the image: “Clary has the ability to both create new symbols and make runes that are stronger than other people’s. In this scene, she is fending off an enemy with the first rune that she’s ever drawn on herself at the amazement of the other Shadowhunters. It was very reassuring to come on set and see everything covered in runes and replicated down to the last detail. The movie was definitely made by people who love the books and wanted to do right by them.”

The first official trailer is set to release later this week, be sure to check back with us! Want more? Cassandra Clare did an awesome exclusive interview with ew.com about casting and movie spoilers, so be sure to check it out here!

[via ew.com]

Book News, Books, News

New Book Releases, Week of May 6th, 2012

Here’s this week’s new fantasy, scifi and horror book releases. Click on the title to see covers.

Released Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Abandon Book 2: Underworld, by Meg Cabot

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Meg Cabot, the dark reimagining of the Persephone myth begun in ABANDON continues … into the Underworld.

Seventeen-year-old Pierce Oliviera isn’t dead.

Not this time.

But she is being held against her will in the dim, twilit world between heaven and hell, where the spirits of the deceased wait before embarking upon their final journey.

Her captor, John Hayden, claims it’s for her own safety. Because not all the departed are dear. Some are so unhappy with where they ended up after leaving the Underworld, they’ve come back as Furies, intent on vengeance . . . on the one who sent them there and on the one whom he loves.

But while Pierce might be safe from the Furies in the Underworld, far worse dangers could be lurking for her there . . . and they might have more to do with its ruler than with his enemies.

And unless Pierce is careful, this time there’ll be no escape.

City of Lost Souls (Mortal Instruments), by Cassandra Clare

The New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments continues—and so do the thrills and danger for Jace, Clary, and Simon.

Can the lost be reclaimed? What price is too high to pay for love? Who can be trusted when sin and salvation collide?

Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge.

Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

Enchanted, by Alethea Kontis

It isn’t easy being the rather overlooked and unhappy youngest sibling to sisters named for the other six days of the week. Sunday’s only comfort is writing stories, although what she writes has a terrible tendency to come true.

When Sunday meets an enchanted frog who asks about her stories, the two become friends. Soon that friendship deepens into something magical. One night Sunday kisses her frog goodbye and leaves, not realizing that her love has transformed him back into Rumbold, the crown prince of Arilland—and a man Sunday’s family despises.

The prince returns to his castle, intent on making Sunday fall in love with him as the man he is, not the frog he was. But Sunday is not so easy to woo. How can she feel such a strange, strong attraction for this prince she barely knows? And what twisted secrets lie hidden in his past—and hers?

Endure (Need), by Carrie Jones

Zara is at the center of an all-out war, and an impending apocalypse. True, she’s successfully rescued Nick from Valhalla, but it simply isn’t enough. Bedford is being ravaged by evil pixies and they need much more than one great warrior; they need an army. Zara isn’t sure what her role is anymore. She’s not just fighting for her friends, she’s also a pixie queen. And to align her team of pixies with the humans she loves will be one of her greatest battles yet. Especially since she can’t even reconcile her growing feelings for her pixie king…

Unexpected turns, surprising revelations, and one utterly satisfying romantic finale make Endure a thrilling end to this series of bestsellers.

Flora’s Fury: How a Girl of Spirit and a Red Dog Confound Their Friends, Astound Their Enemies, and Learn the Importance of Packing Light ,  by  Ysabeau S. Wilce

Despite her troublesome attraction to magick, Flora has more or less spent her life
doing what’s been expected of her. Now, at sixteen, she knows that this path has
been strewn with secrets. Sure that her true mother, Tiny Doom—long believed to be
dead—is alive, Flora becomes determined to find her and leave behind the lies she’s
been told about who she is. Flora’s quest takes her on a journey from lawless islands to
the deadly desert, and into an unexpected romance with a brooding stranger who reveals
himself to be a kindred spirit. And it all becomes far more dangerous when Flora
realizes how desperately their enemies want Tiny Doom—and Flora herself—dead.

Hemlock, by Kathleen Peacock

Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered.

Since then, Mac’s life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac’s hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy’s killer:

A white werewolf.

Lupine syndrome–also known as the werewolf virus–is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control.

Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy’s murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy’s boy-friend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk.

Kathleen Peacock’s thrilling novel is the first in the Hemlock trilogy, a spell-binding urban fantasy series filled with provocative questions about prejudice, trust, lies, and love.

The Hunt, by Andrew Fukuda

Don’t Sweat.  Don’t Laugh.  Don’t draw attention to yourself.  And most of all, whatever you do, do not fall in love with one of them.

Gene is different from everyone else around him.  He can’t run with lightning speed, sunlight doesn’t hurt him and he doesn’t have an unquenchable lust for blood.  Gene is a human, and he knows the rules.  Keep the truth a secret.  It’s the only way to stay alive in a world of night—a world where humans are considered a delicacy and hunted for their blood.

When he’s chosen for a once in a lifetime opportunity to hunt the last remaining humans, Gene’s carefully constructed life begins to crumble around him.  He’s thrust into the path of a girl who makes him feel things he never thought possible—and into a ruthless pack of hunters whose suspicions about his true nature are growing. Now that Gene has finally found something worth fighting for, his need to survive is stronger than ever—but is it worth the cost of his humanity?

Steampunk: Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein, by Zdenko Basic and Manuel Sumberac

Everyone is familiar with Mary Shelley’s classic novel, but no one has read it like this! Frankenstein is the long celebrated gothic tale of a science experiment gone awry. But in this brand-new edition, Shelley’s haunting horror story is transformed with the addition of steampunk-inspired art.

With elaborate full-color illustrations throughout, this is a truly unique interpretation of Frankenstein. It’s a fresh look at a classic story, spiked with gadgets, fashion, and steam-powered machinery inspired by the hottest trend in science-fiction. Releasing just in time for summer reading, teens will enjoy this classic novel with an awesome steampunk twist!

Struck, by Jennifer Bosworth

Mia Price is a lightning addict. She’s survived countless strikes, but her craving to connect to the energy in storms endangers her life and the lives of those around her.

Los Angeles, where lightning rarely strikes, is one of the few places Mia feels safe from her addiction. But when an earthquake devastates the city, her haven is transformed into a minefield of chaos and danger. The beaches become massive tent cities. Downtown is a crumbling wasteland, where a traveling party moves to a different empty building each night, the revelers drawn to the destruction by a force they cannot deny. Two warring cults rise to power, and both see Mia as the key to their opposing doomsday prophecies. They believe she has a connection to the freak electrical storm that caused the quake, and to the far more devastating storm that is yet to come.

Mia wants to trust the enigmatic and alluring Jeremy when he promises to protect her, but she fears he isn’t who he claims to be. In the end, the passion and power that brought them together could be their downfall. When the final disaster strikes, Mia must risk unleashing the full horror of her strength to save the people she loves, or lose everything.

Until I Die (Revenants), by Amy Plum

I wish there was only today, just right now, and no forever.

It seems fitting that I fell in love in Paris. Peel back a thin layer of reality and under the city’s glamorous surface is a battleground for immortal enemies.

Because with Vincent, reality is an illusion. Handsome, chivalrous, and witty, he’s got everything I’ve ever wanted in a boyfriend…except mortality. But when I chose Vincent, I chose love over reason and safety.

Vincent swore to avoid death–to resist his very nature so that we could be together. But I refuse to stand by and watch him suffer.

I know I’ll do whatever it takes–even if it means lying to the people I love–to fight against a fate that is trying to tear us apart.

Broken Illusions: A Midnight Dragonfly Novel, by Ellie James

The next exciting novel in the thrilling new Midnight Dragonfly series from Ellie James!

It’s almost Mardi Gras, but for 16 year-old psychic Trinity Monsour this is no time for celebration. Another girl is missing. Tormented by visions she doesn’t understand—of an empty street lined by crumbling old buildings, a terrified voice warning her to be careful, and a body lying motionless in the grass, Trinity embarks upon a dark odyssey she could never have imagined. She’ll stop at nothing to better understand her abilities, convinced that doing so is the only way she can make sure the terrifying images she sees never actually happen. But it seems everyone wants to stop her. Her aunt is worried Trinity might discover secrets best left in the past. Her best friend, Victoria, is afraid Trinity is slipping away, her boyfriend, Chase, fears she’s taking too many chances, and the lead detective will barely let her out of his sight. Only one person stands by her side, and in doing so, he slips deeper and deeper into her heart and her dreams—blurring the lines of reality and illusion. When the dust settles, one of them will be dead.

Hollyweird, by Terri Clark

Aly King is about to fall for the fallen

My best friend, Des, and I totally freaked when we won the contest to meet THE Dakota Danvers in Hollywood. But now we’re finding out he’s SO not the angel everyone believes him to be. In fact, Dakota is the son of Satan, wreaking havoc on Hollywood and creating an evil army hellbent on world domination.

Lucky for us, Dakota’s super-cute personal assistant, Jameson, is a fallen angel trying to get his wings back, and he’s working undercover to squash his demon boss’s plan. If Jameson hadn’t taken me under his wing I’d be in serious trouble, because I’m a total newb when it comes to conquering evil. But, truth be told, that sexy angel’s got me all aflutter and may be one temptation I can’t resist.

Last Rite, by Lisa Desrochers

In this final installment of the thrilling, edgy Personal Demons series, the battle between Heaven and Hell has become critical, and Frannie Cavanaugh is right at the center of it.

With the help of the powerful angel Gabe and demon-turned-mortal Luc, Frannie has been able to stay one step ahead of the forces of Hell. But when the demons killed Frannie’s best friend and destroyed her brother, they raised the stakes. If Frannie wants to keep her family and friends safe, she knows she has no choice but to go on the run.

Their best defense is the power Frannie has been struggling to master, but her attempts to hone her skill go horribly awry. If Frannie doesn’t learn fast, the consequences could be devastating–even apocalyptic.

What happens when you can’t outrun Hell…or trust the ones you love?

Magic in Manhattan: Bras & Broomsticks and Frogs & French kisses, b y Sarah Mlynowski

Bras & Broomsticks and Frogs & French Kisses now available in one volume!

What if all your wishes could come true?

In Bras & Bromsticks, fourteen-year-old Rachel learns the outrageously unfair fact that yes, magic exists, but she’s not the one who’s a witch: Miri, her younger sister, is!

The magic continues in Frogs & French Kisses when the teeny-tiny love spell Rachel talks Miri into casting goes horribly wrong. Now the fate of their family, the world, and senior prom is in Rachel’s hands. . . .

Obsidian (A Lux Novel), by Jennifer Armentrout

When seventeen-year-old Katy Swartz moved to West Virginia right before her senior year, she’d pretty much resigned herself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring, but then she spotted her hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up…until he opened his mouth. Daemon Black is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. It’s hate at first sight, but when a stranger attacks her and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something…unexpected happens. The hot guy next door? Well, he’s an alien. Turns out that Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities and Katy is caught in the crosshairs. Daemon’s touch has lit her up like the Vegas Strip and the only way she’s getting out of this alive is by sticking close to him until her alien mojo fades. That is if she doesn’t kill him first.

Possession, by Elana Johnson

Toe the line between rule-following and rule-breaking in this tense and twisted start to a smart and sexy dystopian trilogy.

Vi knows the Rule: Girls don’t walk with boys, and they never even think about kissing them. But no one makes Vi want to break the Rules more than Zenn…and since the Thinkers have chosen him as Vi’s future match, how much trouble can one kiss cause? The Thinkers may have brainwashed the rest of the population, but Vi is determined to think for herself.

But the Thinkers are unusually persuasive, and they’re set on convincing Vi to become one of them….starting by brainwashing Zenn. Vi can’t leave Zenn in the Thinkers’ hands, but she’s wary of joining the rebellion, especially since that means teaming up with Jag. Jag is egotistical, charismatic, and dangerous—everything Zenn’s not. Vi can’t quite trust Jag and can’t quite resist him, but she also can’t give up on Zenn.

This is a game of control or be controlled. And Vi has no choice but to play.

The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories, by Jeff VanderMeer and Ann VanderMeer

From Lovecraft to Borges to Gaiman, a century of intrepid literary experimentation has created a corpus of dark and strange stories that transcend all known genre boundaries. Together these stories form The Weird, and its practitioners include some of the greatest names in twentieth and twenty-first century literature.

Exotic and esoteric, The Weird plunges you into dark domains and brings you face to face with surreal monstrosities. You won’t find any elves or wizards here…but you will find the biggest, boldest, and downright most peculiar stories from the last hundred years bound together in the biggest Weird collection ever assembled.

The Weird features 110 stories by an all-star cast, from literary legends to international bestsellers to Booker Prize winners: including William Gibson, George R. R. Martin, Stephen King, Angela Carter, Kelly Link, Franz Kafka, China Miéville, Clive Barker, Haruki Murakami, M. R. James, Neil Gaiman, Mervyn Peake, and Michael Chabon.

Fountain of Age: Stories, by Nancy Kress

Nine new stories from a long-time star of the science fiction field including the Hugo Award winner “The Erdmann Nexus” and Nebula Award winner “The Fountain of Age.” These stories have been reprinted in The Year’s Best Science FictionBest Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, and Best of the Web.

Kress unpacks the future the way DNA investigators unravelled the double helix: one gene at a time. In many of these stories gene sculpting is illegal yet commonplace and the effects range between slow catastrophe (“End Game”), cosmic (“First Rites”), and tragic (“Safeguard”). Then there’s the morning when Rochester disappears and Jenny has to rely on “The Kindness of Strangers.” There’s Jill, who is kidnapped by aliens and trying to learn the “Laws of Survival.” And there’s Hope, whose Grandma is regretting the world built “By Fools Like Me.”

Powers, by James A. Burton

Albert Johannson lives off the grid. He’s forgotten more than he remembers about his past, but those snippets he’s retained tell him two things: he’s lived a long, looong time and he doesn’t trust anyone, particularly gods. He’s not any too fond of demons either, particularly the one that materializes in his kitchen wanting to hire him for a special mission. It’s as deadly to cross a demon as to deal with him, so Albert reluctantly agrees to investigate, putting him in the path of a prickly arson detective named Melissa el Hajj with trust issues of her own. Clashing at a crime scene, they uncover a broken seal that seems ancient enough to have been forged by Solomon himself. The seal cries out to Albert that he must mend it or something dark and dire will happen. Albert, who has a special affinity for metal, must first discover exactly what that will do to his kind – and he’s only just beginning to understand who and what he really is.

 

Summaries from Amazon.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Reviews, Books, Reviews

A Slow Start For City of Fallen Angels, but Worth Reading!

For those of you who follow my reviews, you would have noticed that I’m not shy about my love of Cassandra Clare’s books. My enjoyment of her Mortal Instruments trilogy doubled when I learned she was extending the series to be six books, the first of which came out April 5th of this year. City of Fallen Angels picks right up where City of Glass left off, and though it had a slow start, Clare finished the book in her typical exploding style. This might contain some spoilers for those of you who haven’t read the first three, so beware (if you’re curious about the series, feel free to read my review of book one, City of Bones).

Clary is back from Idris, along with all her Shadowhunter and Downworlder friends. Her mom’s about to get married to Luke, local werewolf and all-around wonderful guy. And she’s finally with Jace. After all the stress, heartbreak, and just plain Hell they went through, a happy ending is at last on the horizon.

Of course, nothing is ever that easy in this world, which is proven once again when Shadowhunters start showing up all over New York City dead. Downworlders are suspected, putting tension on the recently-created truce. Clary’s personal life starts taking a turn for the worse as well. Her best friend Simon is having a terrible time since he told his mom he’s a vampire—he has nowhere to live, and even more, all sorts of powerful Downworlders are after him, thanks to his Daywalking abilities.

Then Jace starts to pull away. Clary has no idea why, and the more she pries, the more distant he becomes. Something is lurking under the surface, some truth connecting all three of these events… if only she could figure it out.

This book was a bit of a rollercoaster, and not in a good way. Out of all of Clare’s books, this is my least favorite. It honestly took me to almost 200 pages to start to enjoy the story. Though I was revisiting characters I loved, they seemed flat and typical, their actions predictable to me. I wasn’t connected to the story, even though some pretty significant things happened in those 200 pages.

However, having said that, the ending more than made up for the slow beginning. About half-way through the book something just clicked for me, and the pages couldn’t turn fast enough. The layers of plot and the struggles the characters went through—particularly Jace—were rich and filled with the adventure, suspense, and sexual tension I have come to expect from Clare’s books.

I also loved the way she continued the story. Usually in a trilogy or series, we read to the climax and then have no more insight into the characters we have loved. Does Harry ever encounter another wizard ready to take over the world? Will Bella ever fight the Volturi once and for all? Trips end, people die, love is lost and found, and life moves on. But what happens to them? I think it is unrealistic to expect that fantasy worlds have no more issues once the big baddie is taken care of. With City of Fallen Angels, we get to see that continuation of life. And the way the author connects the first three books to the second is simply brilliant—well-written, and unexpected.

With the disconnect at the beginning, was this book worth waiting it out to get to the end? I’d definitely say yes. Maybe it would have felt more connected if I had read it immediately following a read-through of the first three books. Next time I do that, I’ll have to let you know. Either way, the things I have come to expect and enjoy from Cassandra Clare as an author were there, building up towards an ending that was well worth wading through the disconnect.

 

Book News, Books, News

Mortal Instrument Fans, Want to Read Jace’s Letter From City of Glass? Now You Can!

I love this series. Yes, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m sure. Luckily, I know I’m not the only one out there.

On that same note, I know I’m not the only fan curious to know what was in the letter Jace wrote to Clary at the end of City of Glass, book three in the Mortal Instruments series written by Cassandra Clare.

The letter was released in certain copies of City of Fallen Angels, but only from select retailers who had the rights. However, those rights have been released, and the letter is now online for all to read.

So, brought to you by the author’s website, here is the completed letter. Enjoy!

We’ll be bringing you a review of City of Fallen Angels within the next few weeks, so stay tuned!

 

Book Reviews, Books, Reviews

Recommendation: “City of Bones”

This is one of my favorite series. Since there has been discussion recently here at Lytherus about the new 4th book in the series, the movie which is being cast at the moment, and the Steampunk elements in Cassandra Clare’s branch-off story Clockwork Angel, I thought it was a good time to post the review I wrote when I first read this extraordinary book.

Title: City of Bones
Author: Cassandra Clare
Released:  03/27/2007

Imagine walking into a club and witnessing a murder. Even stranger, the killers are teens, completely unashamed about what they’re doing, and the victim disappears as soon as he’s killed—because he’s a demon. This is the opening to Cassandra Clare’s extraordinary book City of Bones, the first in the Mortal Instruments series.

Our protagonist, Clary Fray, is almost 16, and suspects nothing unusual in her life prior to her witness of the demon murder. But she soon learns about the mystifying teens and what they actually stand for. They are Shadowhunters—the official term for demon killers—spending their entire lives hunting and killing the monsters that come to wreak havoc on the earth. Beautiful, strong, sexy, and aloof, Clary can’t help but be intrigued by them, especially the smart-alek Jace. When her mother disappears mysteriously and Clary is attacked by a demon in her own apartment, she has nowhere else to turn but to the Shadowhunters for help. This one occurrence begins an unraveling of a series of events, pushing Clary into a world she never even knew existed. Secrets and truths are revealed, and as the story continues you begin to see just how involved her life actually is. Plus, all of this is happening in the dark and familiar streets of New York City. Toss in the Downworlders—vampires, werewolves, faeries—and Clare creates a world rich with both common fantasy elements and fresh new ideas.

I love the way the author has constructed this world and the people in it. Our main character is wonderfully believable, quirky, vulnerable, and stubborn. The supporting characters in this story are bright shining souls, beautifully written. Clare captures their distinct personalities incredibly well. And though the majority of the book is told from Clary’s point of view, occasionally she jumps into the head of another character, giving us an even fuller view of the situations at hand. But the author also attacks things on a spiritual plane as well, something not done as often, and it is executed brilliantly.

My favorite part of this book is the fact that Clare wasn’t afraid to push the boundaries of traditional writings for young adults. She includes elements in her story that some might call controversial, but it only adds to the complexity and beauty of the plot. Plus she executes it in such a fashion that it blends seamlessly into the story around it. I’d go into more detail, but to do so would reveal some of the wonderful facets of this brilliant book.

This was one of those stories that I read from start to finish in one sitting. I couldn’t get enough of it, couldn’t read it fast enough, and didn’t want it to end. The climax was so shocking, so wonderfully uncomfortable and edgy, that I cannot wait to pick up book two. If you like real-world, urban fantasy, you don’t want to miss this one.

Written by: Lauren Z.

Book News, Books, News

4th “Mortal Instruments” Book Cover Revealed

Cassandra Clare fans will be eagerly awaiting April 6th, 2011, for the release of the fourth book in her Mortal Instruments series, entitled City of Fallen Angels. Here’s a little sneak peak of the cover, which was revealed today. You have to watch the video, it’s at the end.

There is also a link to a sample from the book!

You can check it here.