City Of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
Published On: March 28, 2008
Published By: Walker Books
Genre: YA, Fantasy
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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?
Better than expected sequel.
This was a really action-packed second instalment in The Mortal Instruments series. I had somewhat expected it to follow the usual trend of second books and be underwhelming in comparison to the first; however, I enjoyed this book just as much as the first in the series. It has it's own storyline and action rather than simply answering the questions raised in book one and setting up for book three, as is often the case.
The world keeps developing.
One of my complaints about the first book was that I found the world to be confusing and would have liked more information on several occasions. I was happy to discover that we learn more about the world in the second book and a lot of the things that had initially confused me were being looked at in more detail. I loved that we delve deeper into the downworlders in the second book and find out a lot more about them. All of this information is also given in a very fun and exciting ways so there isn't any kind of boring 'info-dumping' that tends to make things drag.
New characters and new secrets.
We were introduced to some interesting new characters in this book, many being downworlders with that aspect of the world being more of a focus. As seems to be the case in this series, these new characters brought with them many new secrets and questions to be answered later in the series. This definitely kept the story exciting and having new questions constantly arising makes me even more excited to continue on with the series as soon as possible.
There were two distinct things I did not enjoy in this book, both of which involve Simon. The first is the love triangle. I did not appreciate this little complication to the story, particularly as I really didn't like the way Simon's actions. I'm sorry Simon, you can't just decide someone is your girlfriend without actually discussing it with them. I was not a fan of this aspect. The second thing I didn't enjoy was just Simon's storyline as a whole. It didn't seem all that necessary at this point, although that may change in future books and all may become clear. I'm hoping, however, that these things play less of a part in future books.
Overall, this was a really fun second book in the series. I didn't love it quite as much as the first book but I did enjoy it. There were plenty of questions left at the end of this book to be answered as the series continues and, I'm sure, many new mysteries to discover. I am very excited to see where this series will go and can't wait to pick up the third book soon.