The Mortal Instruments: The Graphic Novel, Vol. 1

34733254The Mortal Instruments: The Graphic Novel, Vol. 1 by Cassandra Jean

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Distributor
First Published: November 7th, 2017
Publisher: Yen Press
Recommended Age: 10+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Graphic Novel, Fantasy, Action, Demons


Hanging out with her best friend, Simon, is just about the most exciting thing in Clary’s life…that is, until she realizes there are people only she can see. But when her mother disappears and a monster attacks her, Clary has to embrace a world that she never even knew existed–a world full of vampires, werewolves, demons, and those who fight for the humans, Shadowhunters…


Well, it could have been worse. It could have been unreadable.

Like most fans of The Mortal Instruments, I had been waiting for a graphic novel adaptation for a very long time. I thought we would have one much earlier than this, but better late than never, right?

This is actually a good adaptation, in terms of story, pacing and atmosphere. Cassandra Jean illustrates all important scenes that appear in the first half of City of Bones. Indeed, this first volume covers everything—or so—up to Simon’s mishap at Magnus’.

That’s fine, because it means nothing is rushed to the point of not understanding what is happening. Even Jace’s little story about the boy and his falcon is featured. Plus there is an extra scene between Isabelle and Simon that is not included in the original first book. I heart it.

So the story is enjoyable and not saturated with narration or dialog, as was the manga adaptation of The Infernal Devices, thank goodness. What I do have to complain about, sadly, is the physical appearance of ALL of the characters. Honestly, what happened? I absolutely adore Cassandra Jean’s work. This is my fourth or fifth book from her, so I’m familiar with her drawing style.

But these drawings look unfinished, as though she rushed to make them to keep up with her schedule. Alec, Isabelle, Clary, Simon… They look nothing like I expected. They are so… bland. They have no interesting features. Even Magnus Bane—my favourite character—is kind of… unattractive. It hurts to say this, because I love the hell out of him. They aren’t even charming or cute. Just… boring.


This, for instance, is Alec. Sniff.

Crossed fingers for better illustrations in the future volumes.


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