Saturday, August 30, 2014

ARC Review: The Iron Trial by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black

Song Of The Moment- Forever Halloween by The Maine

13608989The Iron Trial
by Holly Black & Cassandra Clare
Release date: Sep 9th 2014
How I got it - Review copy from Netgalley
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Goodreads Link
Description -
From NEW YORK TIMES bestselling authors Holly Black and Cassandra Clare comes a riveting new series that defies what you think you know about the world of magic.

From two bestselling superstars, a dazzling and magical middle-grade collaboration centering on the students of the Magisterium, an academy for those with a propensity toward magic. In this first book, a new student comes to the Magisterium against his will -- is it because he is destined to be a powerful magician, or is the truth more twisted than that? It's a journey that will thrill you, surprise you, and make you wonder about the clear-cut distinction usually made between good and evil.

I received this book from the publisher through Netgalley to review honestly

My Rating: 3 stars

Review: Okay I admit I had a hard time reviewing this book because it's just okay, I don't have strong feelings one way or the other, I don't hate it, I don't love it, all together it's meh. First I want to address the whole it's a Harry Potter ripoff thing that appears to be going around surrounding this book on Goodreads, honestly if I hadn't read that people(most who have not read the book) were calling it an HP rip off it never would have occurred to me. 1. Just because there are two boys and a girl as the main characters doesn't mean it's an HP ripoff(I see this all the time on Goodreads and it annoys me to no end). 2. Sure when you see a book about magic set in a magical school you're going to be hesitant, and I completely understand this but really the magic, the school, it's nothing like HP, the only similarities is that there is magic and schools of magic in both books. Having said that this wasn't the best book.
   I love my middle grade and my fantasy and I loved the idea that the authors wanted to take everything they know about fantasy books and turn it on its head, I was excepting some awesome revelation at the end that I didn't get. It was unique, it wasn't your average middle grade "chosen one" fantasy book but it wasn't some epic thing that's going to stand out like I was excepting.
   This book follows Call, an angry 12 year old boy who happens to be a mage. His dad thinks that the mages are corrupt and has been telling Call this all his life, that they caused the death of his mother, that they don't care abut the other mages, that if Call were to train at the Magistrium he would end up dead, and that Call had to fail at the Iron Trail so that he wouldn't be excepted into the school. Of course, he fails at failing and nothing is as he thought.

Let's Talk -
   Plot - It's still your average fantasy novel. The young mages are trained, there is going to be a war, they are looking for a "maker" a mage who can use chaos magic and stop "The Enemy". Unfortunately it was really slow and boring, that's all I have to say about the whole book.

   Characters - Call was fairly unlikable. There were a few moments were I enjoyed his character but for the most part he was kind of a jerk. I don't feel like we got to know his team mates(you know the other two pictured on the cover? I can't remember their names....awkward.), there wasn't enough time spent on building their friendship and everything. I can't really think of a character that I loved...

   The Enemy - Short for The Enemy Of Death....could you not come up with a lamer name?

Overall - Sure their were a couple plot twists that make this book different from you're average fantasy but in a sea of middle grade fantasy it doesn't stand out. On the upside I finally figured out what it is I don't like about Cassandra Clare books...they're all slow and boring! Revelation! =)

Would I Recommend This? Sure.
Who To? Actual middle graders.
Will I read more from this author(or series)? Maybe????


  1. I'm sorry to hear you didn't love it! I was hoping a book by both Holly Black and Cassandra Clare would be awesome, but then again it looks like this MG is actually for middle graders. And also, I don't like unlikable main characters.

    1. Yeah I was hoping it would be epic and it's just...not. I can usually enjoy a middle grade, but this one was just not as good. =(

  2. Sorry you didn't enjoy this one all that much. I didn't really want to read it myself, I thought it looked a bit too young. I have to admit to being glad I avoided it now, thanks for the honest review :)

    1. Yeah usually I love middle grade, but this one was just younger than most and mainly boring. =)