Mook Review: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones – Novel by Cassandra Clare



As many of my loyal readers know by now, there is nothing I enjoy more than a riveting YA fantasy series. In stating that, I really wanted to like The Mortal Instruments series, and after reading the first installment City of Bones, it wasn’t that I didn’t like it… I just wasn’t obsessed.  Personally, I like a book that I can’t put down.  I like story that is so engaging I think about it when I am not reading it and long after I have finished.  I like a novel that is a quality piece of work and stimulates the mind, and inspires me to write.

Cassandra Clare’s series is just… eh.  The story is ok, and even nonsensical at times, and the writing is nothing to call home about.  While other YA authors such as Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games) and Veronica Roth (Divergent) aren’t necessarily better technically, Clare doesn’t suck the reader in a provide enough page-turning material to make this truly worthwhile.  However, I did find myself consistently going back to this book and, albeit not desperately, wanting to know the truth about Clary and her relations to the demonic world of Shadowhunters.  I can see the audience this book can reach and why it has a following, but in a way I think I am just too old for this.

While the ending to this story was a cliffhanger in the traditional sense of the word, it didn’t really leave me hanging.  I was quite confused by the direction the novel took and wasn’t completely sure how the integrity of the story would redeem itself, but I wouldn’t completely shun the idea of finishing the rest of the series.  Honestly, there are just too many other books I want to read, and none that I want to sacrifice for the second installment of this series.

“The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones” – Directed by Harald Zwart



This movie, to be quite blunt, was awful.  I couldn’t even finish watching it.  I am a firm believer that even if the book is just mildly invigorating, the movie can be much better (ie: my Mook review of “Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightening Thief”) and I was hoping that expectation would be met in this movie.  I was wrong.  Lily Collins, while beautiful, is kind of pathetic as Clary and Jace, while mysterious, is flat and lacking any kind of depth.

The biggest problem I had with this film was pace.  It was like this movie was on speed.  The first 30 minutes spanned a huge portion of the book and left the viewer with no explanations, no insight, and no passion.  I know I am not the only person with this opinion either, as it completely tanked at the box office and filming for the second movie “City of Ashes” was put on pause (the movie has since been reinstated).

I almost feel that I am not even at liberty to give this Mook a rating since I couldn’t finish watching the film, but I don’t think it would have made much of a difference.  Fellow mookologists, what did you think of this film?

Mook Rating  


15 thoughts on “Mook Review: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

  1. I completely agree about both the book and the movie. I did finish the movie and while I did find some of the fight choreography well done I never felt invested in either the story or the characters. One thing I found interesting is that the movie takes the ending in a different direction from the book, but I wonder if that comes from the power of foreknowledge of what is going to happen. I had trouble getting through the book mostly because I did not care. I did not get immersed into the world she had created.

  2. Oh, harsh about the movie:D I agree though, it could have been better. But I think we can agree that Robert Sheehan is a very good looking young man.

    Also, if you have only read the first book DO NOT CONTINUE ON IN THE SERIES.
    Trust me. IIn fact, Cassandra wrote another series with are far better than the Mortal Instrument, called the Infernal Devices. Waste your time on these instead.

    • Not harsh! Just my personal opinion. My entire blog is completely subjective, and I am in no way calling myself a professional movie critic.

      I’ve been hearing a lot about the Infernal Devices after posting this and I am feeling persuaded into reading it… However I just finished the Divergent trilogy and need a break from series :) Perhaps in the near future. Thanks!

  3. Pingback: Mook Review: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones | TRISKELE PRESS

  4. i wasn’t impressed with either the book or the movie i didn’t finish either and i can read almost anything, and will watch a lot more. Is it me or is there a trend in trying to repeat a franchise theme like the twilight series of movies these days?

  5. Maybe it’s just because I’m 16 and fell in love with the piercing blue eyes of Jamie Campbell Bower but I didn’t think the movie was too bad. I did find it quite fast paced though and I agree about Lily Collins but I can’t wait for the next one to come out (hopefully you will find it better) :)

  6. Oh man, sometimes I like to drink whiskey and watch bad movies with my friends, and this movie was the badest of the bad. The whole time I felt like the screenwriter was saying “yeah you like this don’t you? You know why? BECAUSE YOU’RE DUMB!”
    It made for unintentionally hilarious movie experience.
    I like your blog.

  7. I felt the same way about the book and movie! I feel like I always hear AMAZING things about this series, but I have tried reading it 3 times and I never am invested enough in the story to continue reading it! Also, the movies (while it was not beautiful creatures bad) was very horrible! I thought that the movie would have been so confusing if you never read the book because like you said, there is hardly an explanation for anything until 30 minutes into it!

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