This week’s Book of the Week, and the next few, will be a bit different. I am currently hosting a TMI Read-a-Thon, re-reading all the books of the Mortal Instruments series in anticipation of the release of City of Heavenly Fire. You can join in by clicking this link.
But instead of just reviewing the book, I will talk about why I love each book so much, what I felt when I read it, my memories from reading the book the first time.
I hope that you can all join in! For now, enjoy!
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, Romance
Part of a Series?:
The first in the Mortal Instruments Series
When 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…
Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare’s ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.
My City of Bones Experience:
The first time I read this book was nearly four years ago, in the summer of 2010. The book had already been out for three years and I was jumping late on this bandwagon, but before it completely blew up. That’s not really important though. I was in Borders (oh R.I.P. Borders) looking for something new to read. I was desperate at this point. My boyfriend and I had just broken up and if you’ve never experienced someone whom you love very much, breaking up with you, when you least expect it, it hurts. Badly. And I didn’t quite know what to do with myself. The only thing I’ve ever been good it, the only thing that has ever been able to fix me and make me feel better is reading.
So I was at Borders. I think City of Bones was one of those “employee recommends” that they put on the shelves sometime. I picked it up, read the back cover, and thought, hmm, maybe. It sounded fairly interesting and the fact that the main guy character’s name was Jace kind of had me sold. I love that name, and now love it even more.
I went home that night, and proceeded to read it so fast that I’m surprised the pages didn’t blur in front of my eyes. I immediately went back the next day to buy City of Ashes…and then went back the day after to buy City of Glass, and so on. I was hooked, line and sinker. It was magical.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. City of Bones. It was absolutely breath taking to me. It pulled me into this unbelievable, dark, sexy, incredible world and I never wanted to leave. I’ve always wanted to be a wizard and go to Hogwarts. I’ve always wanted to be a Jedi Knight with a badass lightsaber. As soon as I read City of Bones, I added one more to that wishlist: I wanted to be a Shadowhunter, and badly. I had already had…two tattoos by that point and knew that I wanted to continue to cover my body with them. The tattooed Marks of the Nephilim, the way they fought, it all sounded way too amazing for me to handle. Their world sound mysterious and dark and seriously sexy. I was addicted to it. I wanted to know about this Valentine and his plans for the Shadowhunters. I loved the idea of vampires, werewolves, faeries and warlocks. It all was so amazing to me.
I also loved Clary. I know the whole, small normal girl turned special girl thing is kind of overplayed but I love it. I love the idea that an ordinary girl can be thrown into an incredible situation and became extraordinary. I love how you can make them small but they loom large. I love that. As a small person with lots of fears and issues with bravery, and feeling like she gets lost in the shuffle of life, I love those kinds of stories. Clary was a character that I instantly bonded with. I loved that she read, was fiercely loyal to her friends, and I was jealous of her beautiful red hair, and her ability to pull people in.
Then there was the Lightwood duo, who remain my favorite characters (besides the obvious). I loved the toughness and femininity of Isabelle Lightwood. I loved that she could be physically strong but also emotionally strong as well. I think we forget that strength can be more than just wielding a weapon. Isabelle can wield an angel blade or her fierce whip all while wearing a dress and heels. I think its beautiful that she can be strong and pretty, a fighter and feminine. I liked Alec because he seemed to be me, the kid that isn’t quite comfortable enough in his own skin, incredibly loyal to his friends and family and scared of the change around him. As soon as I figured out he was gay, I knew that I was going to watch his story closely. He meant so much to me.
And then there was Jace. I must mention, I really was so incredibly lonely when I read the book. When you realize that his name is Jonathan, which is my boyfriend’s name (ex at the time), I was dying. It was painful but so addicting. And everything about Jace made me want to grab onto him and pull him out of the pages. He was so sexy, that blond hair, and golden eyes thing going on. He was a fighter, brave and reckless and stupid but so impressive. He had sarcasm a mile, and a bite to scare away most people, but could be vulnerable and emotional. I fell massively in love with a fictional character and he remains my number one crush.
The Last Word
This book did wonders for me. It was a life perserver when I was drowning in my own emotions and self-pity. It was so beautifully written that I remembered again why I loved to read, and why I loved to discover new books. It was huge in my decision to create a blog and share my love for all things books and fandoms. It was the first fandom tattoo that I got on my body, after Harry Potter and Star Wars, both of which had been in my life since I was a child. It was the first book I had read, really, since Harry Potter, that had grabbed me, made me love it and hasn’t let go since. I’m enjoying going back and reading through them, again and again. This is not the first re-read of the book and I’m sure it will not be the last!
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Share in the comments! What do you love about City of Bones? What are some things that you maybe didn’t like? Have you re-read it recently? What are some of the reasons you love it! Can’t wait to hear from you!