On the Mortal Instruments series

Sharper Than a Seraph Blade

By Diana Peterfreund

The Shadowhunters of Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series have a variety of weapons at their disposal, and most possess particular favorites. Isabelle Lightwood is fond of her golden electrum whip, Luke Garroway (when not wolfy) is very attached to the kindjal blade Valentine gave him to off himself with, and Clary Fray probably gets the most mileage out of her Angel-given gift of rune making–that is, when she can manage to hang on to her stele. (Honestly, she drops that thing more often than Stephanie Plum forgets her gun.)

But Jace Wayland Morgenstern Herondale Lightwood–who, thanks to his angel blood, is one of the most powerful of all Shadowhunters, and who has more names for seraph blades than can be found in your average baby-naming book–has one weapon that trumps them all.


Seraph blades and daggers and steles are all well and good (and for Jace, they’re very good indeed), but the weapon he turns to time and time again throughout the Mortal Instruments series is his wit. When things look particularly dire, that’s when his jokes get particularly harsh. Late in City of Fallen Angels, Simon even points it out explicitly:

This was Jace being brave, Simon thought, brave and snarky because he thought Lilith was going to kill him, and that was the way he wanted to go, unafraid and on his feet. Like a warrior. The way Shadowhunters did. His death song would always be this–jokes and snideness and pretend arrogance, and that look in his eyes that said,  …

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