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. Then the body disappears into thin air. It’s hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing―not even a smear of blood―to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?
This is Clary’s first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It’s also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know…
Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare’s ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.
I finally read City of Bones! Cassandra Clare’s books get a lot of hype and seem to have a dedicated following. As I am a dedicated follow of a few other similar series, I knew I had to give these books a try. I was also lucky enough to participate in my very first buddy read with Closet Readers, which was a lot of fun. Its a great way to interact with new bloggers and share your opinions throughout the book.
City of Bones in the first book in The Mortal Instruments series. We meet Clary, a normal teenage girl living in New York. She has a pretty normal life. She does everything with her best (and arguably only) friend, Simon. While her and Simon are out together at Pandemonium, a popular and eccentric club, Clary sees a mysterious group, follows them and watch as they appear to kill a teenage boy. She learns that this boy was actually a demon and that these people are Shadowhunters. They are interested in Clary because she seems to see more than she should for a mundane (normal human). Soon after, Clary’s mother disappears and she learns that she has more ties to this Shadowhunter world than she originally realized.
Overall, an enjoyable read. I didn’t love it, but I enjoyed the premise and world-building enough to continue reading and see what all this hype is about. Cassandra Clare set up an exciting premise of the Shadowhunter world, and we only get a glimpse of it in City of Bones. I want to learn more about how the Shadowhunters started, see the Shadowhunter city, Idris, and learn more about Shadowhunter abilities. I think part of the reason why I didn’t absolutely love this first book is because it took a large portion of the story to introduce us to the characters and set the premise. We have to know who Clary is and why she’s important before we can build on the story. I’m okay with that,and I will refrain from making any final judgement about the series until I know the series in its entirety.
In terms of the characters, I liked them but again didn’t love them. I’m hoping we get to see some major character development from everyone. Clary was annoying at times, although I did like her. She was so naive when it came to her relationship with Simon. Childhood best friend? Spends all their time together? Simon is nerdy and never had a serious relationship? Of course he’s in love with her. Clary acted like she had absolutely no idea when he told her. Sorry if I spoiled anything for you, but I feel like this is fairly obvious from the first chapter. She also acted like she had no romantic feelings towards Simon, but then got jealous whenever Simon talked to Isabelle. Make up your mind, Clary! Simon also annoyed me, he doesn’t really seem to have a place in Clary’s world right now but maybe that will change if he continues to be a major character in the series.
Then we have our major Shadowhunters: Jace, Isabelle and Alec. Jace is the mysterious, broody boy that Clary is crushing on. There is more to him than meets the eye and I enjoyed learning more about his character throughout the story. Isabelle is the typical, beautiful and talented Shadowhunter that Clary is jealous of, but later befriends when they spend more demon-hunting time together. Finally, Alec is the angry, rude Shadowhunter that doesn’t take kindly to Clary joining their team. At first I didn’t like Alec, but he grew on me as the book continued and aspects of his character were revealed. I think I can grow to care about these characters and I do want to learn more about them, even if they seemed a little clichè in this book.
I did enjoy the villain, Valentine. He seems to be a multi-layered, twisted villain and I can’t wait to see what he has planned for later books. I like that he used to be a Shadowhunter and had a group of followers that almost worshiped his ideas, until he got a little too intense with the “cleansing the Shadowhunter race” talk. With the big reveal at the end, it seems Valentine will continue to be a big part of Clary’s life, whether she likes it or not.
I did enjoy City of Bones and I am excited to continue reading the series to see where it take me. I hope to see more character development and some action from Clary as a Shadowhunter.