City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
or: This is starting to look excellent
Synopsis: Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what’s normal when you’re a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who’s becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn’t ready to let her go — especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary’s only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil — and also her father.To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings — and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?
I’m a bit guilty with this book- I read it in late August/early September and never ended up writing a review on it. So here is a very delayed review of a book that I actually really enjoyed.
I wrote a late review on City of Bones describing my happiness at getting in- very very late I might add- into the Shadow hunter Chronicles. I really enjoyed the first book, but I enjoyed this book 10 times more. Clare’s writing definitely improves in this book, and the 2D, slightly confusing world she set up in the first book comes into more of an abrupt focus.
Have I said yet how much I love Valentine as a villain? Valentine is one of those brilliant, maniacal villains who has no redeeming qualities or backstory; he’s just plain evil to be honest. I love it when an author just provides us with a killer villain (lol) and doesn’t appologise and someone please raise a glass to toast Ms Clare for her offering of Valentine.
Simon, who was a favourite from the beginning becomes soooo much better in this book. Loved, loved, loved what Clare did. She finally breathed some life into him and gave him some balls. Praise. The end Battle Royal definitely killed me though.
Clary, who annoyed me in the first book, pissed me the hell off in this one. I reaaaaalllyyy hope she improves because she made me want to throw the book at the wall more than once. Someone please tell me that this girl improves, please. Honestly, I don’t read this book for Clary; I tried to ignore her and focus on things around her. Clary is the sort of heroine I would have loved to read about when I was 15 or younger, but fast forward 6 years? I’ve lost all patience for characters like Clary.
The Fearie court was interesting and so was the introduction of several different down worlder groups. Clare really fleshed out her world and I really enjoyed finding out her mythology on Werewolves and Vampires. Magnus was even more charming if possible, and Alec and Isabelle started to come into themselves.
Other than Clary, my main problem- and lets be honest I think it’s everyone’s problem as far as the reviews seem to go- is the incest thing. Clare does this strange thing where she tries to make the idea of incest ok. It’s not ok, and I can guarantee you I don’t want to read about it. She’s teased it too long and its getting too uncomfortable. It’s fairly obvious that Jace and Clary aren’t brother and sister, I mean come on, it’s just there to create tension and drama because Clare let them fall together too early. But the whole plot device of “brother/sister” is disgusting and has been drawn out way too long. It needs to stop.
Please, dear lord, let her stop with the incest.
Will I read the next book? Hell yeah I will. I’ve been given hints that they get better and I’ve also been given a hint that Simon gets better which makes me happy. Fingers crossed Clary improves too.
So, long story short (literally this book dragged on a bit), Ashleigh liked the book but had a few tiny problems with it (and one larger one). Will Ashleigh get time to read City of Glass before Christmas? Probably snot. But Ashleigh is Determined to finish this series.
Read: English paperback