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Upon listening to this books on Audible, I was taken back to last July, laying in the sun, reading this for the first time. As with every Shadowhunters book, I became engulfed.

I recently listened to this book as I worked on my uni assignments. I needed to meet my deadline but I was so very bored – you know how it is. So, I decided on a book I’d already read and put my headphones in. With the voices quietly in the background, I set to work. Somehow, I managed to keep focused on my work. (Granted, by the time I decided on listening to the book, it was mostly just editing, formatting, and cutting and sticking left.)

So when I finished my work and there was still some of the book left, I was really happy. Laying in bed with my headphones in and nothing pressing to do, I was in my element.

Then lectures began again and I, once again, put my headphones in as I did some research. This time, I got distracted. My heart ached and I had to stop listening and take a second to get over what I already knew would happen but was not emotionally prepared for. Heartbreak like that in the middle of a lecture is not something I’d ever had to deal with before and I’m not really sure how you go about it.

Knowing what happens in the next book obviously helps you through the tough time, though. The pain gnawing at me was overridden by the fact I knew the remedy was on the horizon. Even knowing the outcome, I was gripped. It is cute, funny, romantic, tense, fast and so much more.

You can learn a lot about relationships from the characters in this book. Primarily romantic relationships, but also platonic. You learn that you shouldn’t keep secrets; you should be open and honest when you’re in love. You learn that trusting is okay and you should trust to lessen your own burdens. (You learn that dating a geek is actually super cool.)

You fall in love further with Simon and Izzy, both together and as a couple. You plummet head first into the drama that is Clace, getting so emotionally entangled in the mess of their love life. You sympathise and pity Alec. You also get angry at him and stress over the Malec heartache; your heart aches along with the adorable, smitten Shadowhunter’s. You root for Jordan and Maia, happy that they’re finally happy.

This is not my favourite book of The Mortal Instruments series – though a lot of them blended into one in my head – but that doesn’t stop me loving it so much. It isn’t really a book you can recommend though, is it? I can’t really say ‘this is the book for you’ when you have to read four books beforehand for it to make any sense. So yeah, I have to recommend the whole series, not just City of Lost Souls – and I do. I love the whole Shadowhunting universe so much. So very very much.

5-stars

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