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If Harry Potter and Wicked Lovely had a book baby it would be City of Bones.

  • Nov 2, 2009
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If Harry Potter and Wicked Lovely had a book baby it would be City of Bones. I had been looking forward to reading this book for a long time, and I really have no good reason for waiting as long as I did.

Good world building is paramount in urban fantasy, and City of Bones, if a little small feeling at times, doesn't disappoint. In the Bible, Nephilim are the children of humans and fallen angles, but in City of Bones (COB), they are the result of the Angel Raziel mixing his own blood with human blood together in a magical Mortal Cup. Nephilim, known as Shadowhunters, are demon hunters that exist (along with angels, demons, vampires, werewolves, faeries etc.) in an alternate New York.

15 going on 16 year old Clary Fray accidentally stumbles into this world when she witnesses three teenage Shadowhunters kill a demon in human guise. Clary and her mundane (basically muggle, or human) best friend Simon are soon swept up into a race to find the Mortal Cup before it falls into the hands of the villainous former Shadowhunter Valentine.

Packed with lots of action, and young romantic angst, COB is not groundbreaking in any way, but it is a fun read for lovers of paranormal YA. There are some lengthy explanatory passages that feel out of place given the urgency of the situation in which they appear. Some of the glib/pithy dialogue falls flat, especially when uttered when other characters were near death etc. Pulled me out of the story a bit.

I'll also admit, without revealing any spoilers, that the ending revelation made me extremely uncomfortable. I'm still kind of mad about it. I haven't read the rest of the series yet, but I hope the author addresses the implications of that revelation, or better yet reveals something that negates that revelation. I'm not holding my breath on that one though. On her website, Cassandra Clare offers these words:

"At the risk of spoiling anyone, all I can say is that it's more than just a twist; if you're really invested in Jace and Clary, you shouldn't give up on them yet -- there's still a lot to come in their future, a lot of surprises about their history, and plenty more developments in the Jace/Clary/Simon love triangle."

Jace was easily the most interesting character. I found his behavior, given his upbringing, to be very authentic. I also enjoyed how his character and motivations were revealed slowly throughout the story. I'll be reading the rest of this series just to find out more about him.

Sexual Content: Some talk about about sex from minors. Kissing.

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More City of Bones (Mortal Instrume... reviews
review by . June 03, 2013
Not Impressed
I was utterly disappointed with this book. With all the hype built up about it with the film and fandom I expected more. The lead character,Clary, is extremely boring, the story line never really takes off and the supporting characters, who you could come to like, barely get enough credit.    There are 5 more books, but I am struggling to get through the second one.    I highly recommend you not read this book if you're fed up of typical teen sci-fi romances.   …
review by . September 09, 2009
When Clary heads out to a local club with her BFF, little did she know that her whole life would be altered. She definitely wasn't expecting to witness a murder - much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and yielding bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. No body, no blood and it seems that no one in the club can see these kids other than her. This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters. Shadowhunters are warriors dedicated to ridding …
review by . July 23, 2009
Clary Fray's normal, quiet life takes a surprising turn one night when she witnesses a murder at the club Pandemonium. The only thing is, she's the only one who can see the killers and their victim. The next night, her mother disappears and her apartment is ransacked. It's then that Clary discovers that the killers she saw are really Shadowhunters, demon killers who live in secret. And the people she saw at Pandemonium, Jace, Isabelle, and Alec are the only one who can help her make sense of this …
review by . June 10, 2008
Over the course of a single day, Clary's whole life changes. When she goes to Pandemonium Club, she sees the murder of a blue-haired boy by three strange-looking teens wielding strange-looking weapons. But what she can't believe is seeing the body disappear before her eyes, as if it was never there in the first place. And after that, Clary's mom disappears and Clary is attacked by a mysterious creature, only to be saved by one of the strange teens from the nightclub. And with that, Clary is dragged …
About the reviewer
Abigail ()
I am a 20-something book lover with an obsession for all things urban fantasy. I cut my teeth on the paranormal genre withBuffyandTwilightbefore discoveringPatricia Briggs and Ilona Andrews. Suffice … more
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This Buffy-esque YA novel does not translate well to the audio medium, and part of the problem lies in the story's pacing. Teenager Clary discovers she can see supernatural beings that no one else can, gets drawn into the world of the Shadowhunters (teens who kill demons and monsters) and learns that her mother is somehow mysteriously connected to all the strange happenings around her. As a result, a good chunk of the novel consists of long explanatory passages, as various characters fill Clary in on supernatural creatures, the history and rules of the Shadowhunters and her mother's entanglements—all of which come across as tedious lectures. In addition, narrator Graynor makes almost no attempt to differentiate the various teen characters' voices. Only the minor character Dorothea, played as a faux witch with a gravelly New York accent, is memorable. Graynor also frequently ignores the author's explicit textual directives, such as [Simon] came back, sounding worried or The tone of arrogant superiority was back in [Jace's] voice, for her performance, making this a program with an intriguing premise and cast but disappointing execution. Ages 14-up.(May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.--This text refers to theAudio CDedition.
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ISBN-10: 1416955070
ISBN-13: 978-1416955078
Author: Cassandra Clare
Genre: Teens
Publisher: McElderry
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