The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare
(Warning, there are some Spoilers below--nothing huge, but just as a heads up!)
Holy moly, I adored these books. I should have sat down to write something about each (or, that was the plan) but I pretty much had to just dive right into the next one. No choice in the matter, really. They were that good. I don't rave about a lot of books that I read, and there have only been a few I've reviewed on here that I've absolutely adored, but these are certainly falling into that category--right behind Hunger Games.
Anyhow, I won't get into the plot or anything--that's what amazon's for--but I will say it was unique and interesting. It swept me up and had me gripping the book, reading so fast just to make sure it was all going to be okay for Clary, Jace, Simon, and the host of other nicely actualized characters. My fav person in the books? Totally Magnus Bane. His antics and outfits had me in stitches. I've read a few other reviews of this book and am amazed at how many people have fallen for Simon. Now, don't get me wrong, he's a great guy, but it was totally Jace through the whole thing. Even with the kinda creepy incest thing going on. I knew it wasn't going to work out so that he was really related (duh). I'm afraid it's always going to be the dark and mysterious guy in books that I'm going to root for--it's not real life, therefore I don't have to make the "responsible" choice :-).
So there are a couple of things that I kept thinking while reading, that I would have done differently. I'm not sure they're weaknesses, just difference in taste. Anyhow, I would have loved these books to be in first person. I enjoyed the different character points of view quite a bit, especially in the last book, but it would have been fun, and provided some needed character insight into Clary's head. Or, maybe I just love first-person. The other thing was that there were a few circumstances where it felt like the characters were just meandering. Big stuff would happen and some of the resulting actions felt a little contrived. I'm still not sure why they bothered going to the Seelie court, for example (other than it provided a way for a most interesting kiss scene).
So, yeah, I'll be re-reading these. Very, very fun. Highly recommended to anyone who's looking for a fun read!
(On another note--it's supposed to be close to 100F here today. Welcome summer! It always amuses me that California has two seasons: winter rain and cold, and summer blasting heat. Nothing in between. And some places are still getting snow!)