Thursday, February 4, 2010

Shadowhunters: Looking Better in Black Than the Widows of our Enemies Since 1234

If I made a list of books that I reluctantly started and then fell madly in love with, it would be huge. Jacket descriptions often do a book absolutely no justice, and cover art can be humiliating to carry or just plain bad (do I hear movie covers anyone??).
Often, I find myself lured by recommendations from authors I enjoy, which is how I ended up reading the The Mortal Instruments.

Although I probably would have stumbled upon City of Bones on my own very easily (the series has become huge), I actually heard of it first through Stephanie Meyer (author of The Twilight Saga , but if you didn't know that then where in heavens name have you been the past few years??). Just Prior to the release of the third book, she announced how excited she was to finally be able to read the third book of one of her favorite series; and that's when I started paying attention.

I picked it up several times between March and September of last year, and every time I would read the jacket description, be totally uninspired and put it back down again. Finally in early October I started running really low on good YA reading and picked it up in a sale at Zellers.
I prevaricated, I almost bought the first two in one trip, but they were big (512 pages), and i figured the first one alone could hold me over the week or so before I found myself back up there.
Boy was I wrong.
A few days later I was gleefully heading up at 8pm to pick it up after dinner, talking my husband into the walk by promising a latte on the way.

The story is my favorite type, epic battle fantasy, with a really terrific bad guy. And who doesn't love a detestable bad guy? It has the requisite love interest but Cassandra Clare gives it an excellent twist which leaves you feeling just a mite dirty at the end. But one of the best parts? It's lippy teens prancing New York City like the black clad bad ass you always wanted to be. The fact that they fight daemons just adds to the cool factor.

A brief synopsis? Girl meets odd threesome of teens, girl ends up hanging with odd threesome after home life becomes horribly disrupted. Girls best friend joins the crew, and then girls life as she knows it becomes irrevocably changed. Cliff hanger.. the end of book one. OK so there's some really great stuff in between as well, but I don't want to ruin it for you.

Word to the wise, though Cassandra Clare has a really great site, and there's tonnes of online info about the books etc., DO NOT READ ANY OF IT! Full of spoilers! Rife with them in fact, and nobody gives the polite little warnings before hand either. Cassandra Clare has built a three book story arc full of surprises, don't ruin it by stumbling on casual references to how when so and so, does such and such, blah, blah, blah.
But if you were never one for surprises, the type who always found out what your Christmas presents were before opening, then be my guest. Like I say, she has a great site!

Since one of my favorite parts of this book was how it was exciting, as well as funny, I thought I would leave you with some humorous quotes that i enjoyed. need to read this series.

"'Don't tell me,' Jace said,'Simon's turned himself into an ocelot and you want me to do something about it before Isabelle makes him into a stole. Well, you'll have have to wait till tomorrow. I'm out of commission.' He pointed at himself-he was wearing blue pajamas with a hole in the sleeve.'Look. Jammies.'

"'It wouldn't be my move,' Jace agreed. 'First the candy and flowers, then the apology letters, then the ravenous demon hordes. In that order.' "

""I have a high pain threshold. In fact, it's more of a large and tastefully decorated foyer than a threshold. But I do get easily bored"

" "Is there some particular reason that you're here?"...
"Not this again."
"Not what again?" said Clary.
"Every time I annoy him, he retreats into his No Mundanes Allowed tree house." Simon pointed at Jace."

"'Hello' is girly," he informed her. "Real men are terse. Laconic."
"So the more manly you are, the less you say?"
"Right." Simon nodded..."That's why when major badasses greet each other in movies, they don't say anything. They just nod. The nod means, 'I am a badass, and I recognize that you, too, are a badass,' but they don't say anything because they're Wolverine and Magneto and it would mess up their vibe to explain."

"Clary: "Don't stop there. I suppose there are also, what, vampires and werewolves and zombies?"
Jace: "Of course there are. Although you mostly find zombies farther south, where the voudun priests are."
Clary: "What about mummies? Do they only hang around Egypt?"
Jace: "Don't be ridiculous. No one believes in mummies.""

""Don't order any of the faerie food," said Jace, looking at her over the top of his menu. "It tends to make humans a little crazy. One minute you're munching a faerie plum, the next minute you're running naked down Madison Avenue with antlers on your head. Not," he added hastily, "that this has ever happened to me.""

City of Bones, The Mortal Instruments, By Cassandra Clare
Published by: McElderry, February , 2008

For more reviews of this book, visit:
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The Story Siren
Books By Their Covers

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