Review: City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare

Review: City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra ClareCity of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Series: The Mortal Instruments #1
Published by Simon and Schuster on 2013-07-09
Pages: 485
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Don’t miss The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, now a major motion picture. Discover this first installment of the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series and “prepare to be hooked” (Entertainment Weekly).Enter the world of the Shadowhunters in this special edition of the New York Times bestselling City of Bones, complete with gorgeous cover art from the movie. When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder—much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. And she’s more than a little startled when the body disappears into thin air. Soon Clary is introduced to the world of the Shadowhunters, a secret cadre of warriors dedicated to driving demons out of our world and back to their own. And Clary is introduced with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is almost killed by a grotesque monster. How could a mere human survive such an attack and kill a demon? The Shadowhunters would like to know…

I’m late to the party here but I really enjoyed “City of Bones.” I thought it had an interesting plot, fairly realistic characters, and a unique story. I’ll admit that I read this a few months ago (I’m way behind on blogging. “Blame the PhD program” is my life motto at the moment) so the details are a bit fuzzy.

First up: the gripes. I figured out the Clary and Jace spoiler really early on. It wasn’t hard to figure out. But, I will say that it didn’t stop me from enjoying the rest of the story. The world that the Shadowhunters live in is pretty complex so I spent more time trying to understand the “rules” of the world rather than the major hints Clare drops leading up to the big reveal. In other words, if you figure it out, it’s no big deal.

The one thing I found hard to deal with was the language used by the characters. I’m not talking about swearing here. A good part of my lexicon is interesting swear words so that doesn’t both me. It was just the WAY they talked to each other. Some of the banter just felt juvenile. I know, it’s a YA book. I understand that it’s an irrational criticism on my part but I did roll my eyes a few times when Alec and Jace were bantering. It’s a trivial concern.

What did bother me is the Clary/Isabelle feud. I think girls need more to read than the “you’re a new girl so I hate you” story line that pops up everywhere. There isn’t even a rational reason why they hate each other. Gender representations in media is a hot-button issue of mine so seeing gratuitous cat fighting ruffles my feathers.

Despite my little gripes, I really enjoyed the Alec story line. I won’t give it away but I found his struggle to be an issue that many teens face on a daily basis. It was nice to see it represented in print. I also am really intrigued by Magnus Bane. Apparently people fan girl over his character. I’m not quite at that point but I do think he’s fun.

In all, I’m excited to read The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. “City of Bones” had me thoroughly hooked.


© 2014, Jessica Workman Holland. All rights reserved.