- Series: The Mortal Instruments (Book 1)
- Mass Market Paperback: 720 pages
- Publisher: Pocket Books; Reprint edition (May 29, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1534431780
- ISBN-13: 978-1534431782
- Product Dimensions: 4.1 x 1.5 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Customer Reviews: 6,045 customer ratings
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,142 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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City of Bones (1) (The Mortal Instruments) Mass Market Paperback – May 29, 2018
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"""Wildly popular...think "Twilight "on steroids."
"Lush and fun."
"Prepare to be hooked."
"This version of New York, full of Buffyesque teens who are trying to save the world, is entertaining and will have fantasy readers anxiously awaiting the next book in the series."
"City of Bones has everything: vampires, werewolves, faeries, true love, and stuff that blows up. What's more, Clare's characters are brilliant -- she better not kill any of them off in the next two volumes!" -- Justine Larbalestier, author of "Magic or Madness"
"Funny, dark, and sexy. One of my favorite books." -- Holly Black
About the Author
Cassandra Clare is the #1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of the Eldest Curses series, as well as the internationally bestselling Dark Artifices trilogy, Mortal Instruments series, and Infernal Devices trilogy. She is the coauthor of The Bane Chronicles with Sarah Rees Brennan and Maureen Johnson; Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy with Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman; and Ghosts of the Shadow Market with Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, Kelly Link, and Robin Wasserman. Her books have more than 50 million copies in print worldwide and have been translated into more than thirty-five languages and made into a feature film and a TV show. Cassandra lives in western Massachusetts. Visit her at CassandraClare.com. Learn more about the world of the Shadowhunters at Shadowhunters.com.
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Goodreads says this is supposed to have bonus stories, but it doesn't. It does include funny character profiles from the Clave - including one for Church! Amazon's description does not mention bonus stories, so while I am slightly disappointed, I recognize that it isn't the book's fault.
Clary and her best friend Simon are thrust into a world full of werewolves, vampires, warlocks, fairies and demons. They meet three Shadowhunters around their age: Jace, Izzy and Alec who live in the New York Institute. The first book has a number of different action scenes, but I think it shines most in the world-building department. Cassandra Clare develops an intricate world that you can easily imagine and yet is infinitely more complex than our own familiar one.
While there is some character development, the book only takes place over a period of two weeks. We are just getting to know the characters and that development or growth will come in later books. For now, we are learning about these characters and their secrets. Having read the series before, I am already in love with certain characters so it's strange seeing their early personas. They grow so much over the course of the six books that there are some that I don't particularly connect to, yet absolutely adore them later on.
Although I relate most to Clary, Jace is by far my favourite character in the series. He is witty, sarcastic and has the best lines in any scene. Some of the other characters have hilarious, memorable lines as well because Cassie writes fantastic dialogue - but Jace is the star. He can cause you to laugh out loud, which might garner you strange looks if you're in public reading.
This book is fantastic, but you can definitely see the difference in writing quality between this book and Cassie's most recent series. I think the writing is well done, the world building is immersive and the characters are relatable. I adore this book because it is what introduced me to the Shadow World and my beloved Shadowhunters, but I can admit that her writing has come so far in the last ten years. Regardless, I cannot recommend this series more to young adult/teen fans of fantasy, books with unique and immersive world building and if you're willing to continue with it fantastic character building throughout the series.
The second half, not so much. The reasoning may be that I was no longer in the mood for fantasy or that I'm probably too old for this book series (yeah, well, people older than me read YA AND I do read adult books. YA gives me a sort of breather between adult books). Though there were good scenes and characters in the second half, it fell flat. The characters introduced in the first half became annoying. I felt like many of the emotional scenes were beautifully initiated, but we're not capitalized on and I didn't believe the characters in the aftermath of said scenes.
Then came the ending and the huge "twist(s)" that ruined some of those emotional scenes so horribly, I actually shouted "really?" I did predict one twist pretty early. The second I suspected, but was a but surprised (and a bit disappointed it happened). Without giving away spoilers, thr first thing that popped in my mind was Star Wars. Though this is something not seen often in YA fantasy love angles, I didn't care for it. I had to spoil some plot lines in books further in the series to feel better about this because I really wanted to read the entire Mortal Instruments series as I own three of the six books, the entire Infernal Devices trilogy, and Lady Midnight of the Dark Artifices. So, I have a lot of money invested in the purchase of these books and have committed myself to quite a bit of time in at least the next nine months, or so. Plus, it is promising that Cassandra Clare is said to get better in her writing and plot structure in each subsequent publication. I will continue with this world, even if it stumbled along in the first book. Cassandra Clare does have an addictive quality to her writing and I will keep going.
Top international reviews
I have to say the book was better than the first season although they followed very similar
pathways the book has a lot more humour making me laugh out loud on more than a few
occasions also the emotions of the characters seem to be more intense and helped me relate to the characters and empathize with them
All in all a great read so much so after finishing this book I bought the other 5 books in the series
Looks like I'm going to be busy for a while reading if your thinking of buying this title then I hope you have as much fun reading it as I have done
This book is something that was being raved about on Booktube. Emmabooks loves this series and thought that I should give it a go. First impressions were good. The opening of the novel was gripping and I enjoyed the different POV that it had in the start, but this did not continue on. This book is a fantasy novel that involves vampires, demons, faeries, werewolves etc. It has them all.
The writing was enjoyable to read but often sometimes juvenile. As this is the first book in the series, I can understand maybe a lack of perfected skill in the writing process and I've heard the other books show a great improvement on this. I, however, still felt it didn't take away from the novel and I enjoyed it. The MC is also a teenager and so the language and storytelling were appropriate for the age of the MC and target audience.
There is a lot of action happening in this book. It's very adventurous and has lots of "missions" involved in it. I felt it had maybe one too many missions in it as it was getting a little bit drawn out. The storyline of Clary's best friend becoming a rat and being stolen by vampires wasn't entirely necessary in my opinion, but nevertheless, the action was good. That is just an example of a part where I felt it was just added in for length and more action. Whilst there is action and fantasy there is also a little romance between Clary and Jace. Jace is such an arrogant character he made me laugh out loud for most of his dialogue. He was my favorite character just for being a bit of a jerk. I was really reading to see the romance subplot between them and I was so happy... and then so, so disappointed. There is a further storyline between these two that I honestly felt was unnecessary and annoyed me that it was added. It leads you into the second book, which is great to entice readers, but I just did not like the idea of that storyline. Especially when you know deep down it's going to unravel in the next or coming book anyway because it obviously will. It was kind of like a filler subplot - and it bugged me. It actually put me off reading the second one.
I did buy the second and the third novels when I was halfway through this book as I was enjoying it. I don't read a lot of YA but felt this was a good series. That twist at the end between Jace and Clary did happen to put me off. I have started the second book a few weeks ago and I'm not further than 50 pages in. I think it might be because that twist at the end of this book detracts from the second and so causes the MC become all mopey etc. But, that was my biggest issue with the plot of this novel. I do love a romance, it's my primary fiction genre to read, and with that under my belt it did crush my love for this book.
I think if you love twilight and things like that then you will enjoy this book. It has lots of creepy things going on. The characters are loveable. I'm still laughing at Jace's sarcastic comments, and I did like Clary as a female MC. She's headstrong and not a Mary Sue in my opinion. I also loved the "silent brothers". Damn... those guys are creepy. Just picturing them makes me shudder. The descriptions were in-depth and enjoyable to read. There is also a map in the cover of my book which I also found to be a nice touch.
Overall, I would recommend this book to someone who likes Twilight and likes to read in the fantasy YA genre. I also bought this as a "good like new" book from the Amazon marketplace and it was pristine. There wasn't a broken spine or any dogeared pages. That thrilled me and my inner book nerd to its maximum. I felt the plot was sometimes a little too much, and that ending wasn't quite up my street, which in turn has put me off the second. But, I do still have the second and third books and will be reading them anyway out of enjoyment for the characters - and I know, I will put money on that ending being false.
I went into this book expecting not to enjoy it as there is so much hype around this series, and I think everyone I know adores the books, but I am so happy to say that City of Bones exceeded my expectations, by a mile. I have officially fallen in love with this world and am dying to read book two... which I immediately bought as soon as I had finished.
After a slow but still brilliant start, I was completely absorbed into the world of Shadow Hunters and Demons. Every time I put this book down, I had a empty, hollow feeling which could only be filled by continuing reading, and so I did. At first I thought 500+ pages would take me a long time to read, but as I neared the ending of the book - it wasn't long enough, I needed more.
The writing style, the world building, the storyline and the characters were all so brilliant and believable - they were much more than just words on page, they were alive and real.
This book had the perfect amount of action, humour and romance which was gripping and thrilling, and I am so excited to carry on with the rest of the series.
Well that's what she had been led to believe all her life, but when she witnesses the murder of a `blue haired' boy in a closet of a night club by three attackers, and no one else seems to be able to see anything, she goes home confused.
Out of the blue one day her mum announces that they are leaving New York, right away. Clary gets mad at her mum as she doesn't want to leave and takes off with her best friend, Simon.
Whilst sat in the local café with Simon, she notices one of the attackers from the night club walk past the window, and goes out to follow him. He doesn't understand how she can see him. He tells her that he is a Shadowhunter and that he can only been seen by others from his world or if he chooses to be seen.
Whilst talking to the Jace, the Shadowhunter, she receives a frantic call from her mum telling her not to come home. Doing exactly the opposite she races home, followed by Jace and finds it trashed, her mum gone and a strange hissing creature heading towards her. After a battle she manages to kill the creature but not before it has stung her.
With Clary now in grave danger after being infected by a demon, Jace does the only thing he can think of - he takes her to the New York Institution, the home for Shadowhunters, so that they can help cure her.
This is the start of Clary's journey into a world that runs parallel with the mortal world, a world full of warlocks, witches, vampires, werewolves, faeries, demons and of course Shadowhunters.
If she's going to find out what has happened to her mum, she must first discover who she truly is, and learn to fulfil her full potential.
This is the first book in "The Mortal Instruments" series. The books are aimed at the YA genre, but I was so enthralled by the plot and the hype around the book that I decided to read it.
I discovered a series of books that I love and that would keep me entertainment for a long time.
This is Cassandra's first novel and it is well written for a debut, even if her use of metaphors in the first few chapters is a bit over the top, though that alone doesn't take away the thrill and ease of the read.
Its a story of mystic, magic, romance, action, adventure, hate and anger all thrown in together. The plot develops slowly, chapter by chapter and we the reader, are continuously surprised throughout the book with each new development.
Clary is the protagonist and even with her being only fifteen, I found her enchanting, full of energy and she clearly is a fighter.
Jace is a very head-strong young man, who has had to fight all of his life making him quite stubborn and set in his ways. Then, along came Clary, giving him feelings that he's never experienced before, finding himself attracted to her.
With the added bonus of a kick-ass female with a whip, Izzy, and her older, seriously moody brother Alec, along with geeky Simon, the book is full of well thought out characters, who work well together and are not overshadowed by the protagonists.
I love this book, even though it isn't aimed at my age group I still found it engaging and mysterious. I love the idea of a world we can't see but exists along side us.
The action and adventure fill the book and Cassandra's eye for detail throughout, make visualising the scenes easy. There is also the obvious attraction that Clary and Jace have for each other running ever present in the background of the story, creating that, `will they won't they?' suspension.
I have since read the entire collection and have loved all the books, although when you discover the time that the whole series has been created in, it does seem a bit far fetched, for so much to happen in such a short amount of time.
The book has since been adapted in to a movie, which I can honestly say I wasn't impressed with. The characters weren't how I imagined them and there is a lot of the plot missing, including many key parts of the story.
I agree with those who point out that they aren't just for 'young adults'. They're for everyone who enjoys fantasy, or just a good read with a brilliant love story running through. Yes, there is nothing 'new' in these books. This is unimportant. There was nothing really new in Tolkein's 'Lord of the Rings', as many commentators, starting with Naomi Mitcheson on the cover 'blurb' of the first edition, have pointed out. Also, as Mitcheson went on to say, this doesn't matter. What you want is a compelling read that you really enjoy.
I studied Children's Literature with the Open University. This included young adult fiction. An important aspect of such literature should be to instruct and delight. Delight from Clare's writing in obvious. Instruction is less so, but it is there. The relationships between Alex and Magnus and Helen and Aline are beautifully treated, without 'shoving same sex relationships in your face'. You accept them. Tolkein, Donaldson, Eddings, Rowling and most other members of the gang of fantasy writers don't write such relationships; Clare does so beautifully. She also treats unfairness and reactions to it (and at the same time prejudice). I could cry over the treatment of Helen at the end.
One little point. Is Clare a closet feminist? All the way through 'The Shadowhunter Codex' she always uses 'she' rather than the more common 'he' to refer to both sexes. And, for me, Clary and Izzy are much more 'rounded' characters than their male counterparts!
Although not necessarily set in a fantasy world, I still felt really engrossed into the settings. Able to imagine the different places very vividly in my mind as I read along. Cassie is incredibly detailed in all her descriptions. I appreciated her descriptive writing of the world, characters, weapons, everything! It helped so much to feel like I could fully grasp every scene in all its glory.
Again, without revealing any major story details or spoilers. I would like to address the incredible story progression and plot twists in this book. It felt so good to experience a good juicy plot twist and genuinely be shocked! I threw the book down at several points in this story because I just didn’t see any of it coming at all. In addition, The pacing of the story was perfection! I never felt bored or that things were moving too slowly. All the scenes were relevant and none of them felt like pointless filler for the word count. I was gripped from start to finish. I found it so hard to put down towards the end and I hope it continues that way into the second book.
I LOVED City of Bones. I’m so glad I got it, I had no idea if I would like it or not or whether I was ready to get stuck into such a long series but I am so ready! Though I am only at the beginning, because it started off this well I have extremely high hopes for the rest of my journey reading The Shadowhunters Chronicles. I rate this book a solid five out of five stars with absolutely zero complaints!
Vampires, warlocks, magical beings, werewolves, faeries, mythical monster ... it had everything! And yet, it all felt mismatched. It wasn't a smooth read. It felt like the author has grabbed and nabbed everything from recent popular culture and crammed it into a book.
I have to admit, it did get better towards the end, and actually, there wasn't too much wrong with the story. There were plenty of thrills, secrets, and twists and turns to keep you going. Cassandra Clare can plot a book. The problem is all in the way it is told. Over exaggerated, over dramatic, as well as imagery so cliched it almost made me cringe. It felt too bubblegum pop with a high-pitched American accent that makes you shudder.
There will be many teenagers that love this, and I do want to continue to see where the series goes, but as a debut, I'm afraid there are too many better examples of urban fantasy out there.
It’s unlikely, but in case you don’t know what City of Bones is about: Clary’s life has just turned upside down. Her mum has gone missing, she’s just discovered that there’s more to life than meets the eye and a great evil is resurging.I have watched City of Bones the film and watched the Shadowhunters show so I kind of had a vague idea what this would be like. Obviously the adaptations are different to the book but I knew what to expect of the world, which actually made me more excited to read this actually.
The one thing that had held me back about reading this series is that I’m a fanfiction enthusiast, I’ve been interested in fanfiction, both reading and writing, since 2007. And what was the first fandom I was interested in fanfiction for? Harry Potter. I knew long before I realised that she wrote these books that Cassie Clare had a slightly unsavoury past in the HP fic fandom so when I found out I wanted to stay far away. But I kept being lured back. I know it’s not like she’s exactly Orson Scott Card but I’m aware that she’s not exactly the best person out there. However, I buy most of my books used on the amazon marketplace because I am a student who has 2 trips abroad to pay for so I’m not exactly giving her my money which makes me feel better about the whole thing.
I did really enjoy City of Bones though, as much as I am loath to say it. I liked the characters, I liked the world building, and I liked the writing style. So much so that I’ve bought 3 more of the Shadowhunters books (I was told the best way to read them is in publication order so I ordered City of Ashes, City of Glass and Clockwork Angel).
The dialogue for the most part was quite funny, there was definitely moments where I thought to myself “really Clary, really?” but that wasn’t too often. It did occasionally feel like there were too many one-liners and witty comments, that the characters were too quick to snap back at each other with something funny.
Clary was kind of whiney and annoying but what do you expect from a 15 year old girl whose mother has just gone missing and her world has been turned upside down. I’m excited to read the rest of the series and find out more about the secondary characters because I’ve been told that they are the true stars of the series, especially Magnus.
There was one chapter that is just Luke telling his background to Clary and it’s literally all dialogue with no speech marks or anything and it felt really jarring compared to the rest of the book, and I don’t really understand why it was handled in that way.
But anyway I’m intrigued to see where things go in City of Ashes. I’ve looked up a lot of spoilers because I like spoilers (I know, weirdo) so I know a lot of stuff but I want to see how it all happens. I always look up spoilers though, I’m one of those people who loves to read the last page when I’m halfway through. The only time a spoiler has ever put me off was Allegiant and I’ve never read the book because of it, but I’m honestly glad I didn’t.
The story revolves around a couple of teenagers, Clary & Jace. Clary is a mundane (human) or so she thinks, until a chance encounter with Jace (a shadowhunter). She realises something is amiss when only she can see Jace. It turns out that she is a shadowhunter as well, but her mother wanted to protect her and let her live a normal life, so Clary never knew her true destiny up until this point.
The books follow Clary and Jaces adventures as they battle werewolves, vampires and other supernatural creatures, but a startling revelation at the end of the first book threatens to tear them apart forever.
The characters in the book are engaging and emotive and quickly draw you in and make you care for them which makes for a truly captivating read. It is unpredictable and full of shocks and surprises which makes it a massive page turner and there are also many themes intertwined though the plot which not only engage you with the characters in the story, but could also change your opinions in your own life.
I can honestly say that Cassandra Clare is an AMAZING writer who instantly captivates the reader and takes you along for one hell of a roller coaster ride. The Shadowhunter books produced by her remain my favourite book series and I never get tired rereading them. Along with the 6 "Mortal Instruments" books, there is also 3 books called "The Infernal Devices" which follow a very different group of shadowhunters in Victorian London, "The Bane Chronicles" which is a book of short stories about the warlock Magnus Bane, and the new series of short stories called "Shadowhunter Academy" Also in production there is a new series of shadowhunter books called "The Dark Artifices" So there is not a shortage of spectacular material for you to enjoy once your hooked on The Mortal Instruments.
This book is well worth a read and I would recommend it to anyone as I cannot speak highly enough of it and it opens the door to a host of books your sure to enjoy.
City of Bones is an ambitious first novel, which tackles world-building of an unrivalled scale- with a multi-race, mythology-filled, historically-rich universe, as well as 8 or more important characters- all with their own histories, motives, and complicated lives, and an entangling plot that touches on politics, history, friendship, betrayal, and love. All of that in 512 pages.
While the universe is well built, and doesn't feel vague or understated, unfortunately it results in the plot being a little washed out. A sociopath looking to take over the world, but the good guys are here to save the day. Revolutionary. With that being said, however, I did enjoy the novel, and am hopeful that now the world has been successfully built in this novel, the plots will become more complex and interesting in the ones which follow.