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City of Bones by Cassandra Clare: Book Review

Updated on December 23, 2010

City of Bones

Following on the wave of countless vampire novels, Cassandra Clare’s novel, City of Bones, has an impressive urban twist that seems to set is slightly apart. As with any book that I recommend for reluctant readers, I look for lots of action, a hint of romance and a lot of blood and guts. The blood and guts flow freely in this novel, making it a reluctant reader hit.

The goods about this novel are that it prizes a strong, capable female protagonist. If I recommend a book to young women, I always ensure that the female characters serve as positive models for self-advocacy. Clary does this well. But Clary doesn’t work alone. She is joined by a cast of characters that would engage young men as well.

City of Bones is part of a trilogy, which provides the added bonus of knowing if you catch a reluctant reader with the first one, the second and third will be easy sells.

The bads about this novel are that it is big; an instant turn off to many a reluctant reader. If you don’t like spending time reading, you sure as heck are not going to want to read a big, long novel, right? No worries. For those students who are not turned off by its length, it promises a quality read without much deep thinking.

If you like this book, you might like: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Book Talk:

Would it surprise you to find out that your mother is a witch? Or maybe hangs out with demons? What about if she hung around with a werewolf? Clary Fray’s mother does all of that, and maybe a bit more, but Clary didn’t know the first thing about it.

When Clary begins seeing things that no one else sees and her mother disappears in the middle of the night, Clary starts to wonder if she needs to know a bit more about what is going on.

In a desperate attempt to find her mother and reveal her own true identity, Clary hooks up with a band of teenager demon slayers. To these kids, killing vampires, werewolves and undead humans is all in a day’s work.

But there is one problem. They hate Clary. She is slow and bothersome and a pest in general. So how will she convince these kids, the Shadowhunters to help her? And, will she be able to find her mother? She’s going to have to learn fast if she wants to do either.



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    • profile image

      Madi is BOSS!! 

      6 years ago

      Hey, does anyone know which book is the first out of these series? It sounds very interesting, and I may just read it. If you could tell me I'd appreciate it.

    • Anne Oddity profile image

      Anne Oddity 

      7 years ago

      I enjoyed this book! One of the better ones out of the series.

    • jennawr profile image


      7 years ago from Florida

      just started this book. the first chapter.. i wasnt so interested.. but as i kept reading its getting good by chapter 2. :)

    • KateMcGregor profile imageAUTHOR

      Katie Griffith 

      7 years ago from Cheyenne, Wyoming

      So far, City of Ashes is super engaging. Definitely need to read the first in the series before picking up the second, though.

    • KateMcGregor profile imageAUTHOR

      Katie Griffith 

      7 years ago from Cheyenne, Wyoming

      I am just starting City of Ashes. I have high hopes!


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