I think this book is has some kind of mental disability. I kind of don’t want to make fun of it because, you know, it’s not playing the game with a full deck of cards. But, at the same time, it does not have such a significant learning disability that it needs to sit in a separate classroom from the other stories; it just has this confluence of creepiness and then some kind of mild mental challenge. So, I kind of do
want to make fun of it because, you know, you probably don't have to be this uncomfortable to be around, book. It's a tough call. There was this guy in my high school graduating class like that. I’m going to tell you about him in this review. I really, honestly apologize ahead of time if I offend anyone here. I especially apologize to Cassandra Clare, who I see is a GR author. I'm not meaning to disparage anyone who has a learning disability, and I have great respect for people who share their writing with others. And I'm not equating learning disabilities with mental illness or with being creepy, just to be clear. I just knew a boy who happened to have a learning disability and be creepy, and he reminds me of this book. Also, this isn't to say that people shouldn't read The City of Bones
. You actually should read it, maybe, and play the really fun game, Where Did the Mangled Body Part Come From?
Anyway, back to my story. For purposes of this illustration, I'm going to call the creepy high school boy David Caruso (any resemblance of that name to the name of a real person, living or dead, is purely coincidental, of course). I felt bad for David because he was so picked-on, so I tried to be nice to him. One day, he started leaving notes in my locker on notebook paper in a child’s scrawl, asking things like, “If I’m sad, can I have a hug?” He found out where all of my classes were and would be waiting outside them when the bell rang. He lived about a block away from me, so he would walk home with me from school sometimes. After the hug note, we had a serious talk about boundaries. That night, I had to take a makeup Chemistry test, which lasted about an hour. It was pouring outside, and he waited in the rain for me, standing under a tree. When I finally left, he followed me home, walking about ten feet behind me the entire way.
As I was turning to the road that led directly to my house, David desperately cried out something like, “Why don’t you love me?!!!” This was a relatively common experience with him. There was another girl he was following around for a while around that same time, and he went down on his knees outside of the cafeteria, saying something similar. She got a restraining order against him.
I’m not saying that I believe in originality, because I don’t, but The City of Bones
made me realize that there is a line somewhere, where the flow of literary inspiration and use of traditional themes can turn into a Single White Female
incident. Rather than being a fun re-imagining of Star Wars
, this story was a haphazardly sewn together pop-culture Frankenstein. Eeeet’s ALIVE!!! Basically, the characters from The Gilmore Girls
hook up with non-vampy, but still campy, versions of the characters from Twilight
, and re-enact Star Wars
. Seriously, there is a Luke Danes character, and his name in this story is still Luke. And, it turns out, it is very possible to make the Luke and Leia Skywalker relationship grosser. I'm not sure why you would want to . . . Also, I feel like there are a bunch of other stories that The City of Bones
is stalking, and it seems like some other reviews list them, but I forget what they are right now. My point is that this book has killed them and is walking around wearing their skin.
The other weird thing is that I’m pretty sure there’s a misquote from Star Wars
in here. Isn’t Han Solo the one who says, “I know”? This book says that Leia says it. And I don’t mean that the Leia/Rory character in here says, “I know” while re-enacting the Star Wars
storyline. I mean the book literally says that Leia says, “I know.” If you’re going to SWF a story, at least get it right. Better yet, don’t SWF a story because that’s creepy.
I listened to half of this book on audio, driving to and from a wedding, then I read the rest on the page. Neither were good. Reading on the page is a little better because you can skip the boring parts. I’m not going to lie, though. It was actually a great experience. It was completely refreshing to read something awful. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m not sure why, but it renewed my hope for writing.
Still, all you young stories out there, if a stranger story with shifty eyes comes up to you and asks for a hug, it’s okay to say no. Set some personal boundaries, or you might end up the victim of this kind of literary massacre. I hate to be a fear-monger, and use your own judgment, but be smart. Some of these stories obviously waited too long to take out their restraining orders.