Movie Mondays: Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

Movie Mondays: On Mondays, I will review a book series or novel that has been made into a movie. I will then answer the question that everyone asks: which is better, the movie or the book? Here is this week’s offering:

Book: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare | Movie: Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (2013)

Which did I read/see first? THE BOOK

Book Cover | Movie Poster

The Book:

Series: Mortal Instruments
Genre: Young Adult, Action, Romance, Paranormal


While City of Bones isn’t my favourite book of the Mortal Instruments series, it is a strong opening for a long saga. I find it really builds up the rest of the series and by the end there are a few twists that make you want to grab the next book.

The shadowhunter world is complex in the sense that there is quite a bit going on but is simple enough that you will easily understand what is happening once Clary discovers it.

I also really love the characters and they are what keeps me coming back to this series and waiting the 1-2 years it takes for each book to be published. It’s easy to get invested in their stories and I’m excited to see how it all ends.

My full review of the series can be found here!


The Mortal Instruments is one of my favourite series so I am probably a bit biased when it comes to this book. Compared to the rest of the series it isn’t as action-packed or have as many plot twists–BUT it does have all of that so it is never a boring read. Those who like paranormal young adult action series will like this a lot.

Rating: 5/5
Series Review: Full series review here!.

Similar Reads: Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare (The Infernal Devices, #1) and The Iron King by Julie Kagawa (The Iron Fey Series, #1)

The Movie:

I had meant to see this in theatres when it came out in August but it came out at an awful time for me because I was so busy and I completely forgot. I had been keeping tabs on the movie since I read the book so I was super excited to see it.

I’ll start with the casting–I thought it was great! At first, I wasn’t a fan of Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace. I think it’s because I could only think of him as the scraggly King Arthur in the short lived Camelot TV series so he wasn’t who I pictured as Jace. But after watching the first 10 minutes of the movie I realized he was a good choice. He’s got the Jace humour and swagger and that helped change my mind. Lily Collins as Clary was a choice I’ve always liked and the rest of the cast is great without singly calling out each person. Magnus is a little iffy for me but I think I’m just super critical of my favourite character. He seemed a little too young and not as eccentric as I expected but I did warm up to him by the end. It’s been so long since I read them that I can’t remember if the shadowhunters have British accents in the books or if that is just a movie thing but it seemed weird to me…

The book truly comes to life in this movie and they captured Clare’s world and characters perfectly. It was funny and I loved seeing some of my favourite scenes coming to life before my eyes. My only peeve is the slight plot modifications. I understand why certain ones where done and agree that it is probably the best move for them to do BUT the one scene with Simon in particular I think could have been left as it is in the book (though I can see what they were trying to do with it).

Before the movie was even released, they had decided to make the sequel, City of Ashes. I’m not sure if they are still following through on these plans due to the dismal box office numbers but I hope they do. This movie had a lot of promise as there are quite a few smaller cliffhangers left open by the end of this movie that are resolved in the next book. I think if they market it better, (ie remember most of the people who read these books when they first came out are now in their early twenties) it will do a lot better.

So, which is better: the book or the movie?

In this case, the winner is the BOOK . The movie was great but due to some plot changes in the movie the scenes that had me gasping in disbelief aren’t as shocking as they should be. Both movie and book build and set the stage for the rest of the series but the book just does it so much better. I don’t think book fans will be disappointed in the movie–I certainly wasn’t and I won’t be as long as they make a sequel 😉

Do you agree? Leave a comment below!

Synopsis for City of Bones (from Goodreads):
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. . .


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