To see full review click here: http://yalbookbriefs.blogspot.com/2012/04/mortal-instruments-books-1-3-cassandra.htmlShould really be a 3.75 starsThroughout the years several people have recommended that I read the Immortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare. For various reasons I chose not to read the series, but finally I relented and decided to give the original trilogy a try (the series has since then been expanded to six books, the fifth is out next month).Honestly, I wasn't expecting much when I started reading the series, but I was pleasantly surprised. In fact, I got through these books fast. They were definite page turners. Clare kept me interested and I kept reading which is always a good thing. The dialogue also sparkled. There were many times I laughed out loud. And for the most part I liked the characters particularly Jace and Magnus. Though I did find Clary and Simon to be annoying at times. Probably my biggest problem with the book dealt with Clary. There were times she bordered into Mary Sue territory (i.e. her super fantastic rune power). It was obvious that Clare didn't want to make Clary a Sue and tried to give her faults to make her seem real and while it worked a lot of time, sometimes I still found her to be a bit obnoxious. Take her impulsiveness. While I understood Clary was trying to help out her friends and family a lot of the time I wanted to slap her for not thinking. Then again, I guess this did make her a more realistic character so I can't complain too much. The only other aspect of this trilogy that really bothered me was Sebastian. I thought he was a great evil character, but I wished he made an early appearance in the trilogy. I just felt like he came on in the last book to be an easy fix for one of the plot lines in the story.Best Feature: Kick ass action: I will give Clare this, she knows how to write some pretty bad ass action scenes. I think these scenes were what made the book such an easy and quick read. Worst Feature: Incest: Okay, there is some supposed incest going on in this series. Whether or not the couple in question actually turns out to be siblings, I'll let you read the book to find out. However, even if they weren't siblings I wish these characters would keep their paws off of each other. For at least awhile. Appropriateness: This series is pretty action oriented and as a result there's lots of violence. There's also mention of incest throughout the books as well. I would recommend this series for ages 15+.