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

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Welcome to the first review in my #readcassieclare series!

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare is the first YA Urban Fantasy installment in the world of Shadowhunters!

This review contains a lot of SPOILERS!

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bonesWhen 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…


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This is my third time reading this book! Back when the Mortal Instrument series was about to finish, I decided I was going to pick this book up. I remember I liked this first book, but since I didn’t have the next book, I ended up putting the series aside.

A few years later, I had the urge to pick it up yet again, and I successfully made it through Book 2 before I moved onto a whole new series, leaving Cassandra Clare back on the shelf to collect dust.

And now, in 2019, I have made the goal to finally finish this series and discover all of the hype that has blown through the Book Community! So even though this is my third time picking this book up, I unfortunately didn’t remember all the events that happen in the story.

But each time I read the first few chapters, I am immediately pulled back into this crazy world!

This book is a very snarky, and I loved it. I love reading books with a dash of humor in the dialogue. Honestly, I think I could argue that Cassandra’s writing in general is very sarcastic and snarky because almost every character has some sass through their dialogue.

I feel like Clary is the typical YA character in that she’s being thrown into this crazy, intense world and quickly accepts it. Simon, on the other hand, takes a hot minute in trying to make sense of everything which I found to be more realistic in his personality. I could tell immediately that Simon was the best friend who was secretly in love with Clary, and unfortunately, she’s a character that doesn’t see it.

What do y’all think of Clary and Jace? It was another relationship that I typically see in YA, but it’s the dramatic twist at the end that saves this trope all the way. Siblings? Could that be any more of a forbidden love connection? It will be very interesting to see how their relationship plays out moving forward. Now, they have to come to terms with their situation and determine if they can move past those feelings for each other. Which I could see how it’s going to be a struggle since I don’t think that they have that brother-sister mindset.

The plot is pretty quick to read through. There’s a lot of fighting, dodging vampires, and discovering secret portals that I really enjoyed reading. There really isn’t a dull moment in this book. The world building is well-done, and I think it’s a great foundation for the rest of Cassie’s books. There are still a ton of questions surrounding Valentine and his plot for taking over the Shadowhunters and the rest of the paranormal world.

Overall, I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars.


Discussion Questions:

  • Who is your favorite character so far?
  • What did you think of that twist between Clary and Jace at the end? Forbidden love?
  • What creatures are your favorite to read about?
  • What are your predictions for Book 2, City of Ashes (if you haven’t read it previously)?

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Published: 27 March 2007

Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books

Genre: Young Adult Urban Fantasy

Pages: 485

How I Read It: Mass Market Paperback


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What are you thoughts on this series so far??

Join me on Instagram @treestandbookreviews and through #readcassieclare to get a real-time view of all my bookish thoughts on the series!

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If you enjoyed reading along with me, feel free to leave your comments below! What were your favorite parts of this book?


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Until next time..

Happy Reading,

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5 thoughts on “City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare

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