City of Bones
By: Cassandra Clare
This book begins when fifteen-year-old Clary Fray first meets 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...
Let me start this review by saying, I have been putting this book off for ages. That's why I was sure I had heard a chorus of, "Wait, you haven't read this yet?" the entire time I was reading it. But yes, I was procrastinating big time. Because I'd heard some pretty mixed things about the series and the characters, so I just didn't read it (I wouldn't say I actively avoided it, more like I had so many other things to read that I purposefully didn't give it a second thought). But now, having read it, I can say that I really quite liked it. So that's good, yeah?
---Let's get one more thing out of the way. I adored The Infernal Devices (which I read first because I typically enjoy historical fiction better than things set today). I promise not to compare (too much). But I'd just like to mention that City of Bones didn't quite grab me like Clockwork Angel did, but that it was still a great read.---
Clary: She's a good character, I think. I didn't mind being insider her head, even enjoyed it. She's funny and caring, if sometimes a bit too naïve. I think she has a lot of potential for character growth so I hope that's utilized in the coming books (which I will be reading and probably soon).
Jace: Okay. I have opinions about him. He's a well-written character, complex, characterized thoroughly. My problem is that he's a love interest at all (**not because of the 'plot twist.' I've been spoiled so I know it's not true.**). Just because he's so rude all the time. I don't think his small kind comments make up for the arrogance and the harsh words. I feel like he sandwiched every tiny compliment between fifty rude comments. I don't think it makes sense for Clary or for Jace's previous characterization. But beyond the romance, yeah, I think he's a well-developed character, at least so far.
Simon: I LOVE him. He's hilarious and dorky, which is always a win. I really like his and Clary's friendship. I want more of his sass. One of my favorite comments by him was,
"Filters are for cigarettes and coffee."
As soon as I read it I said out loud, "Well that's something I'll be saying more often."
Isabelle: I don't think we saw enough of her for me to say anything beyond that I like her character. I'm interested in seeing her and Clary's friendship develop, too (assuming that it does).
The beginning was a bit slow, but as soon as the action toward the end hit I did not want to put the book down. The action was engaging and engrossing. The climax was interesting and didn't disappoint on plot twists.
But, having read this now I can see why people say that Clare recycles plots. This book wasn't as different from The Infernal Devices as I would have hoped. The only difference was that this one wasn't as appealing to me personally.
I did enjoy this book. It's a fun and intense ride with well-conceived characters (for the most part). Some aspects were kind of meh for me (like the love triangle-ish things). But I get why this series is a hit, it's action-packed, witty, and immersive.
"There is nothing...quite like the moral absolutism of the young. It's easy as a child to believe in good and evil, in light and dark."
"Every teenager in the world feels like that, feels broken or out of place, different somehow. Royalty mistakenly born into a family of peasants...and it's no picnic being different."
"They say pity is a bitter thing, but it's better than hate."