Review: City of Bones

Before I get started, I'll just put this out there: I'm sure that this review will be none too popular, as evidenced by the number of people who absolutely loved the series and the other negative reviews on Goodreads that have received a multitude of trolls and nasty comments.  Please keep in mind, this is MY opinion of MY reading of this book, and while that doesn't automatically make me wrong, you have every right to dismiss it and move along.

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1)City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Oh dear.

The cover should have been a warning. Stephanie Meyer wants to live in this world. Yep, it's going to be bad.

Just a few examples of how bad the writing was (maybe a little spoilery after this point):

(Referring to Magnus the warlock) "Clary guessed from the curve of his sleepy eyes and the gold tone of his evenly tanned skin that he was part Asian." (p. 219)

"Under the skirt of her short green dress her feet were webbed like a frog's." (p.221) - How would her feet be under the skirt of a short dress? Did she have no calves?

"I think she just didn't want me to get too far away from her. My mom, I mean. After my dad died she changed a lot." (p. 311) - BUT HER DAD DIED BEFORE SHE WAS BORN!!!!! How would she know what her mom was like before then?!

Also, Magnus, the gold-colored part-Asian named his cat Chairman Meow.

Valentine is a play on Voldemort (seriously, and any other villain who isn't actually dead or destroyed and comes back to wreak havoc). And Clary is stubborn and stupid and always takes things at face value instead of actually THINKING about them. She immediately believes whatever anyone tells her. Then when someone tells her that what she was told was a lie, she immediately believes THAT person instead. By the end of the book, I was so confused as to who was telling the truth and who was lying that it was a wonder she believed anything at all (which she did) and that she was even still alive considering how many people died to keep her safe. She's also completely useless, can't do much of anything defense-wise (just stands there and screams most of the time, except the time she threw a dagger at a werewolf, but that was mostly a gut reaction - here's a knife, there's a werewolf coming after me, I'm going to throw it and hope it hits something). She's torn between two guys and can't make a decision as to how she feels about them, OH NO!

Poorly written, the story was not great, and the character development was pretty non-existent. This book gets a D-. One extra star for Luke, and Simon, the only two worthwhile characters in the book.

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Comments

  1. I read the series- all five. I liked them, but they weren't like amazing or life changing or anything. I was entertained enough by the storyline to get sucked in and keep reading, and I think they do progress with the characters as they go on a bit. The author used to write Harry Potter fanfic.

    The movie, eh. I feel like it gives the potential to set the stage for the rest of the books to be made into movies, but it wasn't very good. I loved the character of Magnus in the books and he was so blah in the movie and that was disappointing.

    Are you going to read the next one?

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    Replies
    1. Magnus's character was okay, but we really only saw him in one scene in the first book and that was hardly enough for me to judge whether he's interesting or not. I did like the way he flirted with Alec though.

      There are so many other books I want to read that at this point I'm going to shelve the series and probably forget about it. I'm glad I only bought the first one though (and got it second-hand at that), because I'd feel compelled to read the rest if I had bought them all, and then I'd be wasting time on books I didn't want to read!

      I guess it wasn't terrible, but I just did not find it to be good writing at all :\

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  2. I watched the movie and was surprised by it not sucking as much as I anticipated, so I read the book. Holy crap it is badly written! I was so close to marking it up with a red pen and sending it back to the editor for revision. I was actually astonished that it had been through the hands of a professional editor given that she changed her description of Clary's mother three times in a page and a half. I did read the rest of the series to see if they put more effort in, and the writing gets marginally better while the plot deteriorates into further incoherence.

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    Replies
    1. I had skimmed a few reviews before reading that said the writing is poor, but sometimes I can get past that. Not with this! Her descriptions of people and places drove me batty!! I resisted the urge to highlight everything I had problems with because I'm planning on getting rid of the book XD

      Apparently it's one of her Harry Potter fanfics turned into an actual novel, which bugs the hell out of me.

      Delete
    2. Yeah, I found that out subsequently. So Jace is Draco (?!) and Clary is Ginny but without any of Ginny's personality and sass.

      Delete

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