City of Bones is the first installment of The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. I have read this book before, so, unfortunately, I am not writing this review after the first time I read this book. I have also read other books in this series. This MIGHT affect my judgment, but I will try not to let it.
When a fun night at the club turns into Clary Fray witnessing a murder, she comes face to face with three mysterious teenagers that only she can see. The victim disappears, leaving no trace of the crime. Jace, Isabelle, and Alec are just as surprised by Clary as she is by them. A simple mundane like her is not supposed to be able to see the shadow world. But now that she has the sight, she is pulled into the Shadowhunter world.
Her mother goes missing and Clary is attacked by demons. But why are these demons interested in her? Who are these Shadowhunters? How did she get the sight? Clary isn’t the only one who wants answers.
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare introduces the reader to a whole new world that exists right in front of our blind eyes. Demons, vampires, werewolves, and more live and work all around us. Only mundanes, those who are purely human, cannot see the shadow world. Shadowhunters, like Jace, Isabelle, and Alec, fight demons and keep the downworlders in line.
I think the idea behind this series is inventive and intriguing. The idea that “all the stories are true” is one that opens up so many possibilities. Clare had so much material to work with, but she had to find a way to make it unique. I think that she succeeded in that aspect.
Clary was an interesting character to follow. She was a bit immature, but then again she is only fifteen years old. There were several points throughout the book that I wanted to slap her for poor choices and annoying reactions. I wanted to tell her to grow up and look at the big picture. But then I tried to look at everything from Clary’s point of view. Her mother was gone and her world was falling apart. I think even adults would struggle to make sound decisions in a situation like that.
Love triangles are pretty common in YA novels, but Clare wrote a love hexagon. Or at least I think it was a hexagon. There was a lot of flirting and hidden feelings in this book, but it was easy enough to follow. I didn’t even realize there were that many people involved until I was writing the review.
This book centered a lot on loyalty and family which I found really interesting for a YA novel, since those are not common themes for that genre. I loved reading about Clary’s determination to find her mother and the loss that Jace felt when talking about his own family.
The backstory also seemed extremely well thought out. There were so many details that Clare had worked out with the Clave and the Circle. I was left knowing there were so many more pieces to the puzzle and that I would need to read the rest of the series to get the answers I was craving.
There were a few mistakes and typos that I found, but none of them were too distracting as I read. The writing was a bit juvenile for my taste, but it was easy enough to overlook, especially since it is written for a younger crowd. I think that if I read this at fifteen, it would have been perfect.
Overall, I did enjoy the story and I think that Clare did a good job of taking concepts that are really well known and making them into something unique and interesting. I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars and would recommend this to anyone who enjoys YA fantasy novels.