It’s a curious story, this one.
Bestselling fantasy novelist Sherrilyn Kenyon is suing author Cassandra Clare, alleging that Clare’s bestselling Mortal Instruments and Shadowhunters series “knowingly and wilfully copied” Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter series.
As a point of reference, Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter series was first published in 1998, while Clare’s Mortal Instruments and Shadowhunter series, City of Bones began in 2007.
The lawsuit states that both series, ‘are about an elite band of warriors that must protect the human world from the unseen paranormal threat that seeks to destroy humans as they go about their daily lives’.
The lawsuit also highlights the following similarities:
- They are both given a manual on how to conduct their mission and on how to conduct themselves when dealing with other entities and species in their fictional world.
- Both series employ a line of warriors who protect the normal world from demons
- In both series, a young person becomes part of the Dark-Hunters’ (or Shadowhunters’) world after being saved by a gorgeous blonde Dark-Hunter (or Shadowhunter)
- They each must kill their demonic father
- Both Dark-Hunters and Shadowhunters have enchanted swords that are divinely forged, imbued with otherworldly spirits, have unique names, and glow like heavenly fire.
“These substantially similar elements, coupled with Clare’s access to the Dark-Hunter series, which were widely disseminated, leave little doubt that numerous substantive original elements of the Dark-Hunter series have been copied by Clare.”
“Clare, in writing The Mortal Instruments and the Shadowhunters Series knowingly and wilfully copied the Dark-Hunter Series and original elements therein to create a work or works substantially similar to and derivative of the Dark-Hunter Series.”
We look forward to Cassandra Clare telling her side of her side of the story.
About the Contributor
Andrew Cattanach is a regular contributor to The Booktopia Blog. He has been shortlisted for The Age Short Story Prize and was named a finalist for the 2015 Young Bookseller of the Year Award. He enjoys reading, writing and sleeping, though finds it difficult to do them all at once.
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