Sword Catcher By Cassandra Clare Book Review

Sword Catcher By Cassandra Clare Book Review

Sword Catcher is the latest book and series from Cassandra Clare of Shadowhunters fame. The premise of a Sword Catcher interested me, as well as forbidden love (Clare is the master of forbidden love), so I grabbed it as soon as it came out.

This is a new world for Clare, and one of her first series outside of the Shadowhunter universe. It might be a new place for her, but she has certainly relished the chance to build a new world.

The Plot

Kel is the Sword Catcher to Prince Connor of the City State of Castellane. He has been trained since a young age to stand between his prince and any threat to his life. When an assassination attempt goes wrong Kel and Connor meet the Askari physician, Lin. Lin is on a personal journey to discover how to heal her best friend at any cost. Their two worlds collide as Castellane is embroiled in deadly intrigue.

The Review

The world our protagonists inhabit is loosely based on old Europe. There’s an ancient, extinct empire, which is obviously Rome, and countries that resemble Spain, China, France, and many others. The Ashkari people are Jewish and are treated the same as the ancient Jews were treated (very poorly).

Clare has relished stepping into this new world. She spends a great deal of time describing it; adding in colours, sounds, smells, and cultural differences. It makes for a vivid read and does slow the beginning down. I didn’t usually mind, I enjoy a multi-dimensional story, but some people might find it a bit frustrating and slow.

The characters are intense and exciting, like most of Clare’s characters. Kel and Lin are our main protagonists. Both have a fascinating role to play. Kel is the Sword Catcher, sworn to die for his Prince, but struggling to find his own identity. Lin is an Ashkar physician, hunting for forbidden knowledge and fighting against the restraints put on her because she’s female. They’re both on different journeys but eventually intersect.

Prince Conor is the glue that ties them, and the sun that they rotate around. He’s almost more fascinating, because of his vices and weaknesses. The forbidden love stories are only just beginning in this book, but I’m already wanting more.

As I said before it’s a slow-moving book at the beginning. The world and characters are being built, and there’s lots of time spent on this. It never moved slowly enough for me to find it boring, as there was always something interesting leading me on. And your reward is the excitement of the ending. The stakes are high and the drama and action are obviously only just beginning.

The plot has been masterfully worked out. Every interaction or action has a consequence or reaction, which drives our characters toward each plot point. Everything happens for a reason in this story. It’s like a web, with everything connected to the current moment. I like this in a story, it means that nothing is left dangling weirdly, or just thrown in for drama for the sake of drama.

Summary

Sword Catcher is a stunning beginning to Cassandra Clare’s new series. The world is vivid and sensory, filled with taste and smells, politics and history. I’m invested in the characters, and I’m annoyed that I have to wait for the next book to come out. Hopefully she writes it quickly.

— Bliss
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Hi, I'm Bliss, the reader and writer behind Books For Bliss. Discover book reviews, lists for your next great read, or a story to make you feel great. It's all right at your finger tips; happiness on a page. Read More

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