Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books on March 3, 2020
Genres: Diversity, Fantasy & Magic, Historical, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
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Chain of Gold is the first novel in a new trilogy that stars the Shadowhunters of Edwardian London.
Welcome to Edwardian London, a time of electric lights and long shadows, the celebration of artistic beauty and the wild pursuit of pleasure, with demons waiting in the dark. For years there has been peace in the Shadowhunter world. James and Lucie Herondale, children of the famous Will and Tessa, have grown up in an idyll with their loving friends and family, listening to stories of good defeating evil and love conquering all. But everything changes when the Blackthorn and Carstairs families come to London…and so does a remorseless and inescapable plague.
James Herondale longs for a great love, and thinks he has found it in the beautiful, mysterious Grace Blackthorn. Cordelia Carstairs is desperate to become a hero, save her family from ruin, and keep her secret love for James hidden. When disaster strikes the Shadowhunters, James, Cordelia and their friends are plunged into a wild adventure which will reveal dark and incredible powers, and the true cruel price of being a hero…and falling in love.
This review may contain spoilers for other books in the Shadowhunter Chronicles, especially The Infernal Devices.
Chain of Gold is the book I have been waiting years for. The Infernal Devices was the first Shadowhunters trilogy that I read and it remains my favourite to date. In fact, it absolutely still is one of my favourite series of all time. I was a bit disappointed a few years back when The Dark Artifices came out, not because I didn’t like it but because it wasn’t The Last Hours. There’s just something about the London Institute and the cast of characters that I enjoy much more than the New York and Los Angeles Institutes. And I’m a lover of historical fiction so the Victorian London setting of The Infernal Devices and now the Edwardian London setting of The Last Hours was always going to appeal to me more.
And I’m so happy to say that Chain of Gold definitely did not disappoint. We got really good glimpses of characters from The Infernal Devices but the new younger cast definitely captured my attention and my heart equally. Will Herondale will always be my ultimate book boyfriend, but dayum James Herondale! I loved James so, so, so, so, so much and I can’t believe I’m going to have to wait another year before I can get my hands on Chain of Iron to find out what happens next in his story. But it wasn’t only James who I loved – I loved absolutely every single character in this book. I’ve obviously had glimpses of some of them in the various short story collections that have been released, and that made me feel as though I already knew them. Finding out more about them only made me love them more and nothing about their characters or their interactions with each other ruined my impression of them. Besides Grace Blackthorn but I’ll need to give her a little bit more time before I make up my mind about her. I also really enjoyed that there isn’t really any secret as to which romances are going to come to fruition, given the countless family trees that have been released. I’m just really excited to see how these relationships actually form. James Herondale, I am rooting for your happiness!!
I also really enjoyed the plot of this book. While I enjoyed The Dark Artifices, I found that I didn’t really engage with the plot all that much and my enjoyment was really carried by the characters and their relationships. There was a little bit too much faerie politics going on for my liking. I liked that Chain of Gold had a big focus on demons (like The Infernal Devices) and I found it much easier to read and follow along. Even though the book is over 550 pages long, I felt so engrossed in everything that was happening that the pages just flew by. I just really cannot wait for the rest of the series. And I’ll definitely be rereading The Infernal Devices and all of the short stories in which The Last Hours cast appears.
I can’t speak more highly of this book, though I am definitely biased. It definitely lived up to my expectations and I’m more in love with the cast of characters and the plot of this book more than I ever imagined I would be.
Rating: 5 out of 5
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