Saturday, 9 January 2016

Review: City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare (The Mortal Instruments #2)

Title: City of Ashes
Series: The Mortal Instruments #2
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Walker Books
Pages: 416
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Fantasy

City of Ashes

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?
The second instalment in The Mortal Instruments is action packed from start to finish. So much happens, it is so enjoyable but I struggled to keep all the interconnecting events straight.

Clary is understandably reeling from the big reveal in City of Bones, and the book opens immediately with her and Simon together... romantically. That was a kind of slap in the face for me as I did not like Simon much and Clary friend-zoned him so hard in City of Bones that I was kind of confused at first. But you know, Simon became pretty cool by the end of this book - a lot of stuff happens to Simon and I ended up warming to him.

There is so much more world building, I revelled in all of the little details about demons, the mortal instruments etc. It was a huge step up from the first book, and I had no problems getting sucked into the world almost immediately. The 'downworlders' take centre stage and I found it so fascinating learning about werewolves, vampires and fairies. None of them are what I expected. What is so special about Clary and Jace is kind of revealed? I am expecting it to be further explored in the next book.

Jace and Clary.... It was so awkward! Perhaps not surprisingly, their attraction for each other doesn't just disappear and dare I say I could accept it on some level. Genetic sexual attraction is a thing after all. I had mixed feelings on how it worked out in the end, on some levels I felt it was for the best but dare I say it I was a bit disappointed.

There are so many infuriating hints strewn throughout City of Ashes. Oh my days. Characters literally start a titillating sentence that could reveal so much about the story only to be interrupted mid-sentence and never reveal what they wanted to say!!! I just know it is setting the stage for City of Glass, it is clever because now I want to read it immediately.

My interest is piqued, and I will read further into the series. I would highly recommend reading City of Ashes even if  City of Bones didn't float your boat, it may change your mind.

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