Emelie Mano ’20 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
Cassandra Clare, one of YA’s most beloved authors, recently announced her deal with Del Rey Books for the publication of a new ‘adult fantasy’ series. Clare, who is most commonly known for her multi-part series The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, and The Dark Artifices, has traditionally written for a young adult audience only. Her first novel, City of Bones, was released in 2007, and received worldwide popularity, spurring both a film adaptation and, more notably, the popular Freeform show Shadowhunters. There is some speculation regarding if this new novel, titled Sword Catcher, will be as popular as her previous works of young adult fiction. Additional questions wonder if this new series will interfere with the publication of her novels in her Shadowhunter universe.
However, it is widely arguable that her new adult fantasy will be just as popular with her devoted fans. These fans, after all, have grown up with Clare’s previous novels and their ranging ages will be close to the new characters presented in Sword Catcher.
On the subject Clare states in Entertainment Weekly, “Many of my readers have been with me for years, and have grown along with my characters,” she continues, “And over those years, readers of all ages have come to me both to say that they would like to read books about older characters, and also to say that they’d love to see me build my own new world from the ground up.”
When regarding the timeline of her many other novels in publication, Clare herself states in multiple interviews that fans should not worry. The publication of Sword Catcher will not interfere with her future plans concerning the books of series in the Shadowhunter Chronicles, The Last Hours and The Wicked Powers.
“That was a deal I made with my publisher because I wanted to sell the project, but I didn’t want to interfere with the books that I already had under contract,” she states before adding, “It may come before The Wicked Powers, but not before anything else.”
According to Clare, the direct publication date for Sword Catcher will possibly be sometime in 2021, set to release a few years after Queen of Air and Darkness, the third book in The Dark Artifices trilogy, which is to be released by the end of 2018.
Even though Clare promises that though there will be no connection to the beloved Shadowhunter universe, there will be elements of magic and power, including a range of characters such as criminals, princes, magicians, and warriors. She states the inspiration of this new novel stemmed from a story she read many years ago centering around an Iraqi man forced to to give up his life to serve as the body double for one of Saddam Hussein’s sons. And, in her story, she states her main character, Kellian, follows a similar fate by being kidnapped and “forced to change his appearance in order to become a decoy for a despised king.”
Because of his resemblance to the prince, Kellian becomes a Sword Catcher, a traditional role where Kellian takes the place of the prince at public events, so if he is killed, the true prince remains safe. Each of her characters will experience the darker side of themselves as they face despair and war. Clare mentioned the story had always been in the back of her head, and, soon enough, she found herself getting to know these new characters, including the increasing amount of enemies surrounding them as their personalities and city began to warp into shape.
There is little doubt Cassandra Clare would not be able to pull off a new high fantasy adult series with an army of devoted and enduring fans standing behind her. Many of the same fans who grew up with Clary, Jace, and the rest of her characters will be ready to embrace a new era of Clare’s work. She concludes, “To finally get to share these characters and this world with my readers in my first adult fantasy series is a joy, and in Pan Macmillan I’ve found the perfect UK partner to bring this dream to fruition.”