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

Being a teenager is hard enough without the added stress of suddenly being able to see demons and other downworlders. In Cassandra Clare’s book, City of Bones (Mortal Instruments #1), Clarissa ‘Clary’ Frey has gone from being completely oblivious of the shadow world to suddenly being very much aware of demons, downworlders, and shawdowhunters. Clary and her best friend Simon are at a club in NYC when Clary witnesses three other teens kill a boy–well Clary thought he was a boy but really he was a demon–the three other teens are shawdowhunters that only she can see.

When Clary gets home that night, she is still stunned by what she saw, and to make matters worse her mother starts acting very strange. Clary’s mom, Jocelyn, informs her that they will be going on ‘vacation’ suddenly for the entire summer. This brings about a huge argument with Clary storming out of the house, leaving her mom behind. While she is out with her friends, Clary sees one of the other teens from the night before….Jace. She is not sure why Jace is following her but she confronts him, demanding answers.

Jace wants to know why she can see them through their powerful glamouring charms when no one else can….only a follow shadowhunter or downworlder could possibly see through their protections since Clary is clearly neither, Jace wants to know what she is.

Suddenly, Clary gets a call from her mom who is in a complete panic, ‘they’ have come for her. Racing back to their apartment to find her mother, Clary is suddenly thrown into the mysterious world of the shadowhunters and the downworlders. Jace takes her back to the Institute where she meets a small group of fellow shadowhunters. Over the next few days, Clary begins learning that her whole life has been a lie, her mother, her father, her abilities, what she is…..everything. Clary suddenly feels very lost and very alone….so doesn’t know who to trust or who is telling the truth.

Her whole world is turned upside down….and to add insult to injury, she finds herself more than just a little attracted to Jace. Jace seems to reciprocate her feelings but reluctant to move forward in their relationship. Meanwhile, her best friend Simon begins to take on a role of more than just a friend. With two brave, sexy, and loyal boys to choose from Clary finds herself in a unique position….she knows she will have to break on of their hearts but she does not know which or if she can.

While Clary searches for herself, the shadowhunters are faced with a grave problem….the supposedly dead, evil Valentine is desperately searching for a scared Cup, a Cup that will make more shadownhunters….pure blood shadowhunters in essence. Clary, Jace, and the other shadowhunters must stop Valentine before it is too late and he destroys all that they hold dear, save Clary’s mother, discover who Clary really is, and Clary must sort out how she really feels once and for all about Jace and Simon.

I started reading the Infernal Devices series before this series as Infernal Devices are the prequel to Mortal Instruments (MI) and everyone said that I would like Mortal Instruments more than Infernal Devices…..surprisingly that is not the case, I think I liked Infernal Devices (ID) more. In ID I think there was more sexual tension and love….and I also felt like I got to know the characters more intimately and better than in this series (so far anyway). With this being the first book in the MI series, I am confident the following books will delve into the characters more than this book and I think there is still plenty of room for the sexual tension and love to develop but for me this seemed more like an action/adventure read while the ID series started more as an action/adventure story and grew into a love story as well. I didn’t get that feeling in this first book in the MI series.

I didn’t care for Jace (mostly because I can’t STAND that name!!!)….I love the tall, dark, and handsome brooding hero (like Will from the ID series) and Jace was more tall, blonde, and cocky. I was much more drawn to Alec Lightwood to me he seemed like a better choice as a love interest for Clary. Alec seemed more tormented, misunderstood, lonely, and complex than Jace. Jace endeared himself to the reader too early on in the book I think….I didn’t feel the same chemistry between Clary and Jace as I did in the ID series.

Don’t get me wrong I really really liked this book and I think it’s an exceptional and engaging start to a new series, I just liked ID better so far. Though I am eager to start the next book in the MI series as, City of Bones ended with such a cliff hanger I will eagerly be starting City of Ashes tonight :). I would highly recommend both ID and MI as a brilliant up and coming new series….they are a nice break from the tragic romance of vampire teenagers of Twilight….MI is still a YA series but it is adult enough that older readers will find enjoyment in them also….plus they aren’t as PG as Twilight so that made them much easier to read the Twilight for me anyway 🙂

You will NOT be disappointed with this book in the Mortal Instruments series :).

Challenge/Book Summary:

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

  • Hardcover, 485 pages
  • Published March 27th 2007 by Margaret K. McElderry Books

This book counts toward: NA

  • Hosted by: NA
  • Books for Challenge Completed: NA

Recommendation: 4 out of 5 (great first book in the series, lots of adventure and action)

Genre: YA, sci-fi, fantasy

Memorable lines/quotes:

Facilis descensus averni The descent into hell is easy (179)

To love is to destroy and that to be loved is to be the one destroyed (206)

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