Sunday, 10 June 2012

City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2) Blurb (from goodreads):
 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?

In this breathtaking sequel to City of Bones, Cassandra Clare lures her readers back into the dark grip of New York City's Downworld, where love is never safe and power becomes the deadliest temptation.

City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2)(I was given a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to review basis.)
This is the second book in the ‘Mortal Instruments’ trilogy, and starts around 1 week after the end of ‘City of Bones’.
Clary is living with Luke, and visiting her mom on a daily basis at the hospital where she is in a coma, and Jace, Isabelle, and Alec are back to hunting demons.
Things are different right from the start of this book though, with the return of Maryse Lightwood (Alec and Isobelle’s mother) from Alicante. Especially as the first thing she does is kick Jace out; claiming that he must have been spying on them on Valentine’s behalf all along. But worse is to come when it seems that Maryse has called in the ‘Inquisitor’ to investigate and punish Jace!

Valentine is continuing his mission to get hold of all three mortal instruments, and is this time going after the sword, with a plan to use it for evil.
Simon is still in love with Clary, and struggling to get her attention. The faerie queen makes an appearance, we get more of Magnus, and Luke also plays a key role.

Once again we are following the shadowhunters as they battle Valentine, and trying to guess what the true relationship between Clary and Jace really is.

I enjoyed this book. To be honest I liked it better than ‘City of Bones’. Right from the start this book grabs hold of your attention and doesn’t let it go.
First of all there are developments in Clary and Simon’s relationship, developments that I didn’t think would happen. There’s life changing events for Simon too, that bring him more into the limelight and storyline than he was in City of Bones.

With regards to poor Jace, he really is in for a rough ride in this book. As if dealing with his adoptive mother kicking him out wasn’t bad enough, he has the inquisitor and her harsh ways to deal with, and he gets it pretty bad for things that really aren’t his fault. The inquisitors methods are nasty and unfair, and Jace seems to be top of her hit-list. Jace does make some odd choices at times too though, like going to see Valentine randomly, which really is strange.

Clary and Jace’s relationship is strained to say the least. They’re obviously pretty into each other, but with the whole ‘siblings’ thing, it’s difficult for either to know where they stand. They can’t be together because that would be sickening to other people, but they love each other so much, that can they really ignore their feelings for each other? Obviously the reader is hoping that they can get together and that the familial relationship will be proved to be fake, but at the same time, the idea that they might really be related leaves you with nausea.

I personally however will admit that this book just makes me love Jace even more. He’s still the same funny, flirty, hero-like character as he was in the first book, and I can’t help but want things to work out between him and Clary.

As usual the bad guy – Valentine, is winning again, and causing a fair amount of mayhem as he does. His own love for his children is once again proved to fall far short in this book, which can’t be very nice for either Jace or Clary, especially when Jace is under the impression that he was abandoned by his own mother.

If I had to make one complaint about this book it would be that a certain person just won’t die. Whether or not we want him to die is a different question entirely(!), but he seems to have more lives than a cat! In this book he is first killed by vampires, then has his throat slit and his blood drained out, and then meets the dawning sun (which you would expect to kill a vampire). You would think that after all this he would die! But no, he’s still hanging in there!

The storyline of this book is interesting and full of twists and turns, so much so that writing a summary of what goes on is exceptionally difficult! I did find that it held my attention well, right up until the end where I kind-of got a bit bored during the final fight scene which just seemed to go on and on a bit.

Overall this was a great second book, and I’d recommend it for all urban fantasy fans.
8.5 out of 10.

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  1. Thanks for the info. I'm gonna think this one over before I go shopping. :-)

  2. I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who hasn't read the third book yet.
    Although, I liked City of Bones better, I don't remember why because it's been a while since I read the first book.

    Nazish @ Nazish Reads