City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
“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”
To put it lightly, I hated this book, and it is such a shame because I was so excited to read it. The only thing more terrible than this book, was perhaps the movie. I am a relatively fast reader, but I kid you not this took me a month because I kept on putting it down and forcing myself to pick it back up again. I realise that by this point a lot of people have read this one, but I feel quite strongly and couldn’t resist reviewing.
I will start by praising the author for creating a story I remember well despite reading it a few months ago now. However, it wasn’t exactly memorable for the right reasons:
First off, I found the narration irritating. The third person point of view made it difficult for me to conjure any kind of feelings for the characters other than distaste. To me the whole book felt impersonal and not at all emotive.
Secondly, I found the language features such as the similes stupid. “The night had gotten even hotter, and running home felt like swimming as fast as she could through boiling soup.” I am sorry. But this sucks. How does this give me any indication of what it felt like other than it being hot (which I got from the words hotter and boiling)? Why was the reference to soup necessary? I have never swam in soup so I am quite oblivious as to how this feels. Was it chunky leek and potato soup? Because I am sure that swimming in soup with big bits of potato would be different than in a smooth tomato soup. I will stop rambling on about soup now. But do you get my point? The simile added nothing enlightening to the description. And this is just one example of the irritating and useless language techniques.
I don’t even want to get into the unlikable cast of characters. I literally can’t think of one person in the entire book that I liked. Usually a book has at least one redeeming character. Not this book. Not one.
As if all that isn’t enough, my moral alarms started sounding. Why an author would even consider putting any kind of incest in a young adult book (or any book) is beyond me. What is the world coming to?
I have to say that it was not any one of these things I found most shocking about this book. Instead it is the incredible number of people of people who love it. Surely I can’t be the only one that feels this way! Comments anyone?