Melanie's Reviews > City of Bones

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
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bookshelves: fantasy, young-adult, read-in-2018, angels, demons, fae, vampires, paranormal, shifters
Recommended to Melanie by: Paloma

“Where there is love, there is often also hate. They can exist side by side.”

Hi, my name is Melanie, and I’m the last person on this planet to read anything by Cassie Clare! But I had too many best friends who promised me that reading this series would be worth it for me to finally get to Lady Midnight! Well, the other night I did an Instagram poll, because I wanted something fae and I was just going to pick up Lady Midnight, without reading any of Cassie’s other work, and some of my friends lost their shit, to put it lightly. And this is the story of how I got roped into finally reading City of Bones in 2018.

Again, I’m the last person to read this, but City of Bones starts off with a young girl named Clary, and her and her friend, Simon, are in line for a teen club. Yeah, the two-thousand vibes were real. Once inside the club, a couple individuals catch her eye and she can’t resist following them out of the club, to only realize that she isn’t supposed to be able to see them in the first place.

We are then thrown into the paranormal world that is hidden from the mundanes (non-magical humans). We see vampires, werewolves, fae *swoons forever*, angels, demons, and everything else you think of when you think paranormal. And we also are introduced to the world of shadowhunters, the warriors who are sworn to defeat the demons.

And Clary’s world gets turned upside down when she realizes that her mother has been doing everything in her power to keep her hidden from this paranormal world. And Clary can’t even ask her for the truth, because her mother has gone missing. And the only people who can help her are the shadowhunters. *dun dun dun*

“Keep in mind that when your mother fled from the Shadow World, it wasn’t the monsters she was hiding from. Not the warlocks, the wolf-men, the Fair Folk, not even the demons themselves. It was them. It was the Shadowhunters.”

Back when this series came out, everyone was saying it was “Harry Potter fanfic” and my pretentious, Harry Potter obsessed self wasn’t going to read anything that was a rip off of my fandom. And were a few of the similarities there? Yeah, I mean, this is a story that centers around three brothers with three magical items that a certain villain wants, who has been presumed dead for a while now. The parallels (and names, I guess) between Valentine and Voldemort are very apparent, especially their desire for wanting magic blood to be pure. But besides this big aspect, I really couldn’t easily see any other Harry Potter elements.

But you know what else? City of Bones holds up decently well in 2018. I was a little thrown off that it is told in third person, but I actually think it has aged pretty well. I am always so desperately scared to go back and read my high school favorites, because I doubt they will hold up and have the same magic they did back in the mid two-thousands. This this was a good read, and it was funny, and touched on a lot of things that are super relevant and “cool” today.

And I was honestly impressed that Cassandra Clare wasn’t scared to write in LGBTQIAP+ characters in 2007. I was surprised that we got confirmation for two characters, without it ever feeling manipulative or even drawn out. And she even touches on homophobia and how differently a character would be treated if their colleagues knew he was gay. I mean, this is pretty impressive for 2007, and it wasn’t lost on me. I will say the end there was a villain that maybe did the things he did because of his love for another man that I wish wasn’t in the book, but it didn’t erase the good Cassie did with the other two characters.

“The meek may inherit the earth, but at the moment it belongs to the conceited. Like me.”

This book also surprisingly made me laugh. Jace is like the most sarcastic character ever, and he actually had me laughing in so many scenes. And I loved seeing the mystery unfold right alongside Clary. Magnus was everything, I wanted so much more of him instantly. But I ended up thinking that Luke and his backstory stole the spotlight. I wasn’t prepared for those feelings. And this book had a huge cast of characters, so I’m very curious about how I’ll feel about all of them as the series progresses.

Quick sentence about how the characters made me feel:
Clary - super likeable.
Jace - half love and half hate (and still side eyeing you all, maybe).
Simon - so annoying, please, no one give this boy a certain cup.
Isabelle - marry me this instant.
Alec - I feel neutral but hope to end up liking more.
Magnus - going to be the best character in literature.
Luke - the star of this book for me.
Hodge - super good surprise.
Valentine - needs to get bent.

“You want to know what it’s like when your parents are good churchgoing folk and you happen to be born with the devil’s mark?”

Overall, I went into this with the lowest of expectations. Like, picture the lowest expectations that a human can have. Okay, now, mine were lower than even that. So maybe that’s why I got so much enjoyment out of this story. But I honestly did have a lot of fun with this, and it made me very curious to pick up the next book (hopefully soon)! Also, I have been very blessed to not be spoiled for anything in this series, the only thing I always hear was, “CLARY AND JACE!” Which is why I’m side-eyeing each one of you if the ending of this book is true. Like, you all nasty.

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Reading Progress

May 23, 2017 – Shelved
May 23, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
May 23, 2017 – Shelved as: fantasy
May 23, 2017 – Shelved as: young-adult
April 23, 2018 – Started Reading
April 23, 2018 – Shelved as: read-in-2018
April 23, 2018 – Shelved as: angels
April 23, 2018 – Shelved as: demons
April 25, 2018 – Shelved as: fae
April 25, 2018 – Shelved as: vampires
April 25, 2018 – Shelved as: paranormal
April 25, 2018 – Shelved as: shifters
April 25, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-50 of 56 (56 new)


message 1: by maria (new)

maria hope you have fun reading it, melanie! 😁


message 2: by Tiffany (new)

Tiffany I got this from the library and didn't even read it 😂😂😂


Vishakha I will be doing the same as soon as I get my books. My first read of cassandra clare ^_^


Melanie maria wrote: "hope you have fun reading it, melanie! 😁"

Thank you so much, Maria! I'm nine chapters in and actually enjoying! 💗xx


Melanie Tiffany wrote: "I got this from the library and didn't even read it 😂😂😂"

It has been on my shelf (judging me) for over a decade now... IT IS FINALLY TIME! Haha! And all my friends tell me I will love Lady Midnight... so... it's hope they aren't lying! Hehe! 💗xx


Melanie Vishakha wrote: "I will be doing the same as soon as I get my books. My first read of cassandra clare ^_^"

Oh my gosh! This warms my heart, Vishakha, and makes me feel so much less alone! 💗xx


Skyeler You're not alone! I'm in the midst of my first time reading the Shadowhunters Chronicles, and I'm really loving them and can't wait to continue! Hope you love it!


message 8: by Bitchin' (new) - added it

Bitchin' Reads I will be trying her books soon too. I decided that I really need to give them a try if they are sitting on my shelves. LOL.


Melanie Skyeler wrote: "You're not alone! I'm in the midst of my first time reading the Shadowhunters Chronicles, and I'm really loving them and can't wait to continue! Hope you love it!"

Awh, this warms my heart so very much, Skyeler! Thank you for telling me this! I am truly enjoyed my first book! 💖xx


Melanie Bitchin' wrote: "I will be trying her books soon too. I decided that I really need to give them a try if they are sitting on my shelves. LOL."

Yes, love! This makes me so happy! Maybe we can eventually read one together! 💖xx


message 11: by Shaylee*cheeky* (last edited Apr 23, 2018 09:05PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Shaylee*cheeky* Aw. I totally thought everyone had read CC. Look at all these slackers😒 Do write a review when you're finished😀


Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen) Ahh! The nostalgia train is hitting me hard! I said I was going to re-read these last year and somehow only got through the first. Definitely a ton of fun tho and I'm glad you enjoyed it! :)


message 13: by Elise (new) - rated it 1 star

Elise (TheBookishActress) awwww, I’m glad you liked this one, Mel! I wasn’t really into this one but it uh... definitely improves. Like, I one starred this one, but book three is incredibly entertaining! Hope you like the rest 💚


Kainat 《HUFFLEPUFF & PROUD》 About the ending, hearts wants what it wants 🤷🏻‍♀️😂


The Story Girl Yay so glad you finally read this! Welcome to the world of shadow hunters. And lol at having to suffer through that ending. 😂

I’m currently reading clockwork prince by her and it is amazing. 💕 I actually love it sooo much more than I ever liked this series (I too gave this first book 3 stars). I do so love the tv show for these books though. Do you have any plans on watching it?

Can’t wait to read your full review on this! I’m back to reading clockwork prince bc I can’t stop reading this series it’s so good.


Melanie Kaylin wrote: "Ahh! The nostalgia train is hitting me hard! I said I was going to re-read these last year and somehow only got through the first. Definitely a ton of fun tho and I'm glad you enjoyed it! :)"

Thanks, love! I was so surprised how well it held up! 💖xx


Melanie Elise wrote: "awwww, I’m glad you liked this one, Mel! I wasn’t really into this one but it uh... definitely improves. Like, I one starred this one, but book three is incredibly entertaining! Hope you like the r..."

I read your review and like... I THINK SOME THINGS WERE CUT OUT OF MY BOOK? Like, we didn't even see Alec's parents in this! So now I'm shook, and thinking the old one was more problematic!? BUT regardless, I think it really helped me that I went into this expecting NOTHING, so it ended up being super fun for me! And... all the fae references! I am highkey excited to see what book two is about! 💖xx


Melanie Kainat wrote: "About the ending, hearts wants what it wants 🤷🏻‍♀️😂"

GIRL, I SPIT TEA! LIKE, I CANNOT! AND none of my friends are giving me a straight answer, and I just keep picturing Joe Dirt! LORD, help me! Lmao! I hope you're having the happiest of reading, sweetheart! 💖xx


Melanie The Story Girl wrote: "Yay so glad you finally read this! Welcome to the world of shadow hunters. And lol at having to suffer through that ending. 😂

I’m currently reading clockwork prince by her and it is amazing. 💕 I ..."


This warms my heart, love! I can't wait to get to that series! All my friends say it is the one that's going to make me fall in love! I'm not sure if I'm going to watch the show (or movie... is there a movie? I think there is...) but I am desperate to see how the characters are casted! But I'm so scared to look because of spoilers! I'll let you know, boo! And seriously, thank you for the message! 💖xx


Sandra Hernandez I did not finish second book, it was just plain for me! Plus so many other books on my TBR list that demand my time. I’d like to give it a second chance tho! Hope it gets better as it goes.


Melanie Sandra wrote: "I did not finish second book, it was just plain for me! Plus so many other books on my TBR list that demand my time. I’d like to give it a second chance tho! Hope it gets better as it goes."

Awh, thank you so much, Sandra! I honestly just want to get to the newest trilogy so badly! But I hope I can force myself through the entire backlist! We will see.... *fingers crossed forever* 💖xx


Audrey This one was mediocre for me. I haven’t decided if I’ll continue or not.


The Story Girl Melanie wrote: "The Story Girl wrote: "Yay so glad you finally read this! Welcome to the world of shadow hunters. And lol at having to suffer through that ending. 😂

I’m currently reading clockwork prince by her ..."


There is a show and a movie. The movie came out a few years ago but didn't do too well at the box office so they never made anymore (I never watched it all the way through anyway). Then a few years later they made the tv show, Shadowhunters, which has nothing to do with the movie but is sooo good. I love it. I do love the casting for the characters (overall). They have the most beautiful human being playing Alec (imo) lol.

Also, love your review! "my pretentious, Harry Potter obsessed self wasn’t going to read anything that was a rip off of my fandom." This was literally me and why it took me about a decade to be able to pick up this series. That, and a few other things (she did write harry potter fanfic before writing this series), but in the end, I am so glad I did pick it up.

Also, if you like Magnus, you'll be happy to know he is in the next series (The Infernal Devices) as well and there are some hilarious scenes with him (although he isn't a main character). And I heard she's actually writing a book series featuring him and the person he's dating (can't remember if they started dating in this book or not so I won't spoil it just in case) that's going to come out next year, so I'm sure you'll really enjoy that!


lacy [a ravenclaw library] If it makes you feel better, Mel, I haven't read this series either. lol.


Rebekah "my pretentious, Harry Potter obsessed self wasn’t going to read anything that was a rip off of my fandom".

This is the exact reason I did not start reading this series until 2018!


Lea (drumsofautumn) Great Review! I’m so glad you enjoyed this overall and it has definitely made me less scared of the reread I eventually have to face :D


message 27: by Melindam (new)

Melindam You may be the last person for now! :) I haven't read anything by C.C. yet, so I may come & push you off your "pedestal" some time. :D


destiny ♎ [howling libraries] I'm so glad we were able to convince you to start with this one! ♥ And I can't wait for all the fangirling for future books~


Melanie Audrey wrote: "This one was mediocre for me. I haven’t decided if I’ll continue or not."

Awh, I'm sorry, Audrey! I'll let you know if I think it is worth it soon! I hope you're having the happiest of reading though, love! 💖xx


Melanie The Story Girl wrote: "Melanie wrote: "The Story Girl wrote: "Yay so glad you finally read this! Welcome to the world of shadow hunters. And lol at having to suffer through that ending. 😂

I’m currently reading clockwor..."


THIS IS THE BEST COMMENT EVER, LOVE! Ahhhh! I'm so excited to continue on! And... now I really want to give the show a try! And thank you for your kind words! Happy reading, babe! 💖xx


Melanie lacy [a ravenclaw library] wrote: "If it makes you feel better, Mel, I haven't read this series either. lol."

Oh my gosh, yes, Lacy love, this does make me feel better! Haha! I felt so alone for so long! 💖xx


Melanie Rebekah wrote: ""my pretentious, Harry Potter obsessed self wasn’t going to read anything that was a rip off of my fandom".

This is the exact reason I did not start reading this series until 2018!"


Oh my gosh, this warms my heart, Rebekah! Ahhh! Thank you for not making me feel so alone! Are you still enjoying it? I can't wait to read book two! 💖xx


Melanie Lea (drumsofautumn) wrote: "Great Review! I’m so glad you enjoyed this overall and it has definitely made me less scared of the reread I eventually have to face :D"

Hahaha! Thank you, Lea! I think you will be pleasantly surprised! But like... it starts out in a TEEN CLUB, holy shit... I feel so old! Hahaha! Happy reading, babe. You have to tell me when you start! Maybe we can read one together if we are in the same spot! 💖xx


Melanie Melindam wrote: "You may be the last person for now! :) I haven't read anything by C.C. yet, so I may come & push you off your "pedestal" some time. :D"

Melindam, I'm giving you the pedestal and the spotlight, babe! Hahaha! 💖xx


Melanie destiny wrote: "I'm so glad we were able to convince you to start with this one! ♥ And I can't wait for all the fangirling for future books~"

Yaaaas! Forever thankful you encouraged me, babe! And I can't wait to read more and send you more... slightly passed tipsy, we will say.... snapchat talks! 💖xx


Banny Carstairs This review kinda made my day a little better, so glad you liked it.


Diana Braxton This is 100% one of those series that gets way better in later books, but I'm glad you liked this one!


Audrey Melanie wrote: “Audrey wrote: “This one was mediocre for me. I haven’t decided if I’ll continue or not.”

Awh, I’m sorry, Audrey! I’ll let you know if I think it is worth it soon! I hope you’re having the happiest…”


Yes, I’ve been fangirling over Brandon Sanderson and Jonathan Stroud lately.


Melissa ~ Missy (FrayedBooks) I love seeing what people think of City of Bones for the first time in 2018 so thank you for sharing your review and opinions! I'm glad to hear its withstood the test of time, because I love it and recommend it to everyone but it's been a while since I've read it. It's funny looking back honestly but I enjoy it, I look forward to seeing what you think of the rest of the series :D And that ending. Muwahahha JUST YOU WAIT.


Melanie Banny wrote: "This review kinda made my day a little better, so glad you liked it."

Awh, thank you, Banny! This comment for sure made my day better! 💗xx


Melanie Diana wrote: "This is 100% one of those series that gets way better in later books, but I'm glad you liked this one!"

This makes me even more hyped! Like... I still can't believe how well this book held up! So get ready to hear my gush over MORE books with you, soon, Diana love! Hehehe! 💗xx


Melanie Audrey wrote: "Melanie wrote: “Audrey wrote: “This one was mediocre for me. I haven’t decided if I’ll continue or not.”

Awh, I’m sorry, Audrey! I’ll let you know if I think it is worth it soon! I hope you’re hav..."


Amazing picks! Brandon Sanderson is... well... I love the man! Haha! Happy reading, love! 💗xx


Melanie Melissa ~ Missy (FrayedBooks) wrote: "I love seeing what people think of City of Bones for the first time in 2018 so thank you for sharing your review and opinions! I'm glad to hear its withstood the test of time, because I love it and..."

Hehehe! Thank YOU, Melissa! I can't believe how much I enjoyed this, and how well everything held up in 2018! I legit laughed out loud at Jace at least five times! And I already am itching to pick up book two, and I don't think you'll have to wait long, love! I hope you're having the happiest of reading! 💗xx


George Jankovic Amazing review, Melanie for a great book!


Melanie George wrote: "Amazing review, Melanie for a great book!"

Awh, thank you so much, George! I hope you're having the happiest of reading! 💖xx


George Jankovic You too!


Kathrin I'm glad no one spoiled the story for you. When I first picked up the book it was hard to avoid the spoilers. Have fun reading the series - the last books were a let-down for me but otherwise, I believe it to be a decent series although I don't belong to the target audience anymore.


Brooke Fowler The City of Bones series was solid, but for me Lady Midnight and Lord of Shadows slay! It felt less high school and I really enjoyed them. I feel like you could have started with Lady Midnight and been fine, but it definitely can’t hurt to have the extra knowledge when going into Lady Midnight!!! Based off your review I think you’ll like Lady Midnight because, well, FAE lol


Christina Kneidel great review! I plan to re-read these soon myself so that I can FINALLY read Lady Midnight :) glad you enjoyed the first book, City of Glass (book 3) is my fav!


Melanie Kathrin wrote: "I'm glad no one spoiled the story for you. When I first picked up the book it was hard to avoid the spoilers. Have fun reading the series - the last books were a let-down for me but otherwise, I be..."

I still can't believe it, Kathrin! And thank you so much, love! Happy May and happy reading! 💗xx


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