When Clary Fray witnesses three tattoo-covered teenagers murder another teen, she is unable to prove the crime because the victim disappears right in ...more When Clary Fray witnesses three tattoo-covered teenagers murder another teen, she is unable to prove the crime because the victim disappears right in front of her eyes, and no one else can see the killers. She learns that the teens are Shadowhunters (humans who hunt and kill demons), and Clary, a mundie (i.e., mundane human), should not be able to see them either. Shortly after this discovery, her mother, Jocelyn, an erstwhile Shadowhunter, is kidnapped. Jocelyn is the only person who knows the whereabouts of The Mortal Cup, a dangerous magical item that turns humans into Shadowhunters. Clary must find the cup and keep it from a renegade sector of Shadowhunters bent on eliminating all nonhumans, including benevolent werewolves and friendly vampires.
'City of Bones' was the book I chose to bring to Mongolia with me, and the only better choice I could have made was to bring the whole series. (Not that my terrible packing skills would have allowed it!)
Cassandra Clare's genius is evident from the first page onwards, when we're immediately left unsure as to who we're meant to be rooting for- but when executed by her, it works. Her world has a fresh, unique feel, even though it's inhabited by familiar creatures such as vampires, werewolves and warlocks. The world building is precise and thorough, from the skills and customs of her created race, the Shadowhunters, to the magic and myth that crops up later on. The stakes are refreshingly high for the cast of well developed characters, but we're not left without an occasional funny moment amidst the tension. Although I sometimes had trouble connecting with Clary, Jace has definitely made it on to my top ten favorite characters list, and I really enjoyed the time given over to other secondary characters, particularly Alex and Isabelle, the Lightwood siblings.
And the ending? Let's just say that there was an insane twist that made me desperate to run out and grab the next installment, City of Ashes. Unfortunately, there were no bookstores in rural Mongolia. Fortunately, there are plenty in New England! Reviews of books 2 & 3 will be up shortly- and the action just gets more intense!