I never know to say in these things. I guess that says something about me. I read a lot, write stories, and like books. I like a good debate. Nothing else is to say. :-)
For years I meant to pick up this book because I "knew" the author from Harry Potter fandom. She was a well known Harry Potter fanfiction author, and the last I read of her before she dropped out and said her book was being published was a huge fanwank about her plagiarizing some of her fanfiction from a known published author. It was roundly discussed and the original author got involved. So..that played a small role in my not picking up the book quickly. But this year, after the third one came out I decided to give it a chance.
The book started of slow going for me, mainly because of the writing of the characters. These people are supposed to be 15 year old kids, and yes they are in life and death situations, but they spoke like grown adults and well above their expected vocabulary of teenagers. Their dialogue reminded me in many ways of Buffy The Vampire Slayer and it's nonstop witty snark...and some of the other teen series characters that you saw on the WB. Like Dawson's Creek where the kids spoke in a way that just slightly pushed the realms of reality. And that was one of the main issues I had with the book...it was too familiar, and the writer spent more time trying to write too cute for words dialogue that the actual character development got sacrificed a bit. You did not really connect. The was my only issue really. That I saw some of this before...and done better.
But, about halfway through the book, and it was still enjoyable enough for me to continue, I got caught up in the action and could not put it down. There is nonstop action in each chapter that pushes the story along and keep the mystery going. The world itself is also very nicely built and explained throughout the book...so it build on the mystery. It has the usual Vampires, Werewolves, Fey, etc, etc, and introduces a new set of paranormal creatures from an interesting source. I wanted more explanation into how the Shadowhunters were formed and the religious implications. That would have been interesting. Perhaps in further books? The story built really well on the main story line and threw in some twist along the way...right up until the end. And I will say...some of the twists I did not see coming at all and were really surprising. I will say this about the writer...she goes for it and doesn't back down. So at the end of the book...I was well and fully primed for the next one, and looking forward to it.
Overall...not perfect, and had some things I did not like, but it was enjoyable and made me want to continue reading the series.