Hey guys! Welcome back to another post! This is my third post in my ‘Overhyped?’ series – a series of posts where I review books that have been massively hyped up and discuss whether those books are overhyped or not. If you want to check out my other posts in this series you can find them here. Today I want to talk about a book series that is hugely popular and I recently decided to start reading. The first book in The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare was published in 2010 and since then has become one of the most popular young adult series in the world. Cassandra Clare has become a name that everyone in the bookish community knows well, wether they have read her books or not.
With that being said I have always seen such mixed opinions over her books. As for me, I was never convinced. I think I always wanted to believe that it was overhyped to make me feel better for not having read it. So the question is, was I right? Is The Mortal Instruments series overhyped?
All of the opinions expressed in this blog post are my own unless stated otherwise. These opinions are not facts and are not meant to belittle or put down anyone else’s opinions of these books.
City of Bones
I was first introduced to The Mortal Instruments series with the television show Shadowhunters. Now, there are lots of mixed feelings about the show, but personally I quite enjoy it. In April I decided to take the plunge and start reading the book series. This was largely due to the fact that I watch a lot of emmmabooks on youtube – (you can find her here) – so I decided to see what all the fuss was about. When I read the first book I rather enjoyed it. The thing I liked most about City of Bones was Magnus Bane and I could definitely tell that the book was better the show – and let’s not get started with the movie – but apart from that I don’t think I had very strong feelings about the first book.
City of Ashes and City of Glass
City of Ashes didn’t stand out to me, and even now I can’t remember much about it. Overall I remember it being and easy and enjoyable read and some of the characters became more likeable for me in this book.
City of Glass, however, was a great experience for me. I really loved this book, and I think the introduction of Alicante helped with that. The world was stunning and I was so intrigued with all the new themes and fantasy elements introduced. This was my favourite of all the books for me, and I definitely reacted a lot more to it, feeling more attached to the characters, more heartbroken and shocked by the twists and turns. This was when I started to understand why everyone loved the series so much.
City of Fallen Angels
And then we get to City of Fallen Angels and my opinion of this book took a huge backwards step. This book was not enjoyable in the least and I had to really push through to actually finish it. There was barely any plot development, the characters were dull and boring, the writing was far from good, and the conflicts introduced were underwhelming. I ended up giving this book 2 stars which is the lowest I ever tend to go to rate books and I was close to giving up on this series as a whole when I finished this.
City of Lost Souls
City of Lost Souls was a little bit better but it still wasn’t the best reading experience for me. I still wasn’t convinced that I should like Jace, so I never felt particularly nervous or anxious whenever he was in perilous situations. I knew Clary was never in danger so I wasn’t worried or scared for her either so her whole arc in the story was pointless and uninteresting for me. (That’s not to say it’s pointless and uninteresting overall, I’m sure some people will have loved it.)
I did like the introduction of the infernal cup, however, and I started reading the final book immediately afterwards, so I’m sure it did something right.
City of Heavenly Fire
So I actually loved City of Heavenly Fire. I wasn’t expecting to love it so much and is a solid second place for me with this series. The most stand out thing for me was that this book actually made me like Jace – that’s a miracle in itself – and definitely saved the second half of the series. I cried with the ending. If you know, you know. But at the same time I was still disappointed. We are supposed to believe that the whole world is at stake and that this is a hugely dangerous mission/situation, and yet we have never lost any major characters.
Cassandra Clare made the same fatal flaw as Twilight, for me, and that is it wasn’t realistic. How can something be so dangerous, but no one we know or care about actually gets harmed or dies. I know that one character loses their *REDACTED*, but all in all everyone made it out safe and okay and even said character’s *REDACTED* comes back. So yeah, the stakes weren’t high enough.
So is this series actually overhyped?
This is actually a very difficult question for me to answer. I have feelings either way, and I can understand both sides of the argument for, and against, The Mortal Instruments.
- Yes, the series is overhyped. People often claim that these are some of the best books ever written, with beautiful and impeccable writing, a beautiful and hugely complex world, and incredible and deep characters. I don’t fully agree with any of these statements, so in that sense I do believe that the series is overhyped.
- No, it’s not overhyped. But at the same time I can see why people like them. They’re heartwarming, the characters can be relatable and funny, there’s a lot of suspense and tension and the fantasy elements are really cool and interesting.
Some other thoughts.
I reached out to some people on Twitter and Instagram to get a feel of what more people thought. Check out the end of the post to follow these awesome people on all their platforms and please bear in mind that there may be slight spoilers for some of the books.
Let’s start with the people who loved it.
Azrah says: “I believe it was the first ya fantasy/urban fantasy I picked up when I got back into reading so it really sparked my love for ya fiction and fantasy in general. And I feel like it’s a story with a world and characters that you’ll always love going back to.”
Laura says: “The mortal instrument is one of my all time favourite series!! I love Cassandra Clare’s writing and how she (in my opinion) makes the characters so relatable. I probably prefer the infernal devices slightly more than tmi but I still adore this series so much and I really want to re read it ASAP!”
Instagram user @keepitbookish says “Clace and Male are a big yes” while Laura says “LOVE THEM SOOOO MUCH!!!!!!”
On the other end of that are the not so positive comments:
Tay says that she “didn’t like TMI at all” and that “Clary and Jace made [her] uncomfortable.”
Erin says: “I read them awhile ago so I can’t fully remember everything. But I do remember that I didn’t love them. They were entertaining, but not my fav. I was really creeped out that they kept pursuing a relationship with each other even though they thought they were siblings. NO.” She later went on to add that The Infernal Devices trilogy was awesome and she enjoyed reading those.
Molly says: “Honestly don’t think it’s worth picking up,” while Khloe said that “The premise and plot is awesome, however reading the books just felt more and more like a chore.”
Courtney says: “Meh meh meh” and that she didn’t read past the first 2 books.
and Tanya says “I tried so hard to like this series. But I found it dull and I couldn’t stand Clary and Jace.”
Brooke has some mixed feelings saying: “I think tmi is overhyped, those six books aren’t particularly special and the main reason I continued reading them was because of the characters. I also think the plot twists felt kinda forced. However I do really enjoy the rest of the Shadowhunter chronicles! I love how diverse the character are especially in TDA and the diversity feels really natural. I feel like Cassie Clare has really improved her writing since TMI and I am excited to read the rest of her upcoming releases”
Overall, I can’t answer this question. There are so many conflicting opinions and even my own opinions don’t sway one way. So I want to know what you think. Is this series overhyped? What do you like about it? What don’t you like? Are you yet to pick it up? Come and talk to me, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
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Special thanks to:
Azrah – Follow on Twitter
Laura – Follow on Twitter, and her Blog at Bookish Laura
keepitbookish – Follow on Instagram
Laura – Follow on Instagram
Tay – Follow on Twitter and Goodreads
Erin – Follow on Instagram
Molly – Follow on Instagram
Khloe – Follow on Instagram
Nicola – Follow on Twitter and her Blog at Fantastic Book Dragon
Courtney – Follow on Instagram
Brooke – Follow on Twitter and YouTube
CG Drews – Follow on Twitter and her Blog at PaperFury
and Tanya – Follow on Instagram
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