Title: City of Bones
Author: Cassandra Clare
Series/Standalone:1/6 in The Mortal Instruments Series
Genre(s): YA, Fantasy, Romance
I am determined, I repeat, determined to keep my reviews to an acceptable length, unlike my The Great Gatsby movie review. Oops. So… here we go. I had actually read City of Bones five years ago when I was in my “Twilight is amazing and I’m in love with Edward!!!” phase (I laugh now at the stupidity of my fifteen year old self). I was desperately looking for something similar and came across City of Bones. Initially, I didn’t like the book, the plot, the writing or the characters and believed the book could never compare to love I had for Twilight (oh God). Re-reading the book, I’ve actually come to realise, that I found it thoroughly entertaining and captivating.
The narrative follows Clary Fray who coincidentally encounters a mysterious and handsome boy named Jace. After the presumable kidnapping of her mother, Jace leads Clary on an adventure into a fantasy underground world she never knew existed filled with demons, vampires, fae, werewolves, all in a bid to find her mother, and discover the true nature of her past and identity.
As you may have come to realise, I love strong female protagonists who aren’t a cliché of females. Clary does fall under this category to some extent. She matures from a naïve little girl to sophisticated and level headed. However, I still feel there is room for further development, which is something we will perhaps see in the sequels and see her transform into a fully-fledged badass. The character development is not just restricted to Clary but also extends to love interests and supporting characters such as Jace who appears to be another typical tragic YA hero, but I enjoyed the way he was characterised in this as he transforms behind the mask of annoyingly arrogant teen and. Even Simon, Clary’s best friend who will be forever be friend-zoned. Poor Simon. Furthermore, I usually find supporting characters dull, inconvenient and used purely as plot devices, but this was not the case as I and found characters such as Simon, Isabelle, Alec and Magnus them as equally as enjoyable as the protagonists.
Originally, when I had read this at the age of 15, I thought the language was too simplistic, now however, I enjoyed its simplistic and holistic approach, finding it quite relaxing. It wasn’t overloaded with rich language but I enjoyed Clare’s writing style, its effortlessness mingled with numerous metaphors and similes. I was immersed into the fantasy world and found Clare’s descriptive language a delight to read. Even though it was a re-read, I still enjoyed the plot twist towards the end of the novel and was looking for the clues leading up to it.
My only qualm had to be the length. Surely for a YA it could have been shorter? Nevertheless, still a very enjoyable read and in a world where we are able to delve and discover the fantasy world that inhibits our own.
If anything, this has reminded me the importance of re-reading and always with the attitude of giving something the benefit of the doubt. I’m definitely adding the other sequels from The Mortal Instruments series to my reading list and looking forward to room for the expansion of such an exciting, fantasy world.
My Verdict: 9/10