Book Review: City of Ashes

If you really love something, you never try to keep it the way it is forever. You have to let it be free to change.

cityofashes_cassandraclareTitle: City of Ashes

Author: Cassandra Clare

# of Pages: 453

Published:  January 1, 2008

Rating: 4 Hearts


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? [Goodreads]

My Opinion:

This book was fantastic! I didn’t necessarily love the first book, but I liked it enough to read the next book in the series and I am so glad that I did. This book was intriguing, hilarious, and action-packed.

What I liked:

Above all, I liked the relationship/friendship between Clary and Simon. I just find there to be something so special and innocent about the two of them. Maybe it is because they have known each other practically their whole lives, so it is safe or because how Simon thinks and feels about Clary is just so sweet. I haven’t decided yet, but I can’t wait to see what is in store for them.

The character of Magnus Bane is slowly growing on me. I wasn’t too much of a fan of his in the first book, but he really came back for the win in this one. Besides his “secret” relationship with Alec, I just find him to be absolutely hilarious. From his outrageous outfits to his remarks; there is just so much spunk and attitude surrounding him. “… a warlock who looks like a gay Sonic the Hedgehog and dresses like the Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.”

I really liked the take on faeries, vampires, and werewolves in this series. I am normally not one for fantasy novels (besides Harry Potter and Twilight), but I think the way they are portrayed a bit differently than usual is quite creative.

**SPOILER** One of the character changes that I most enjoyed is Simon’s transformation to a vampire. He is by far my favorite character in all his nerdy-ness, so I wasn’t so sure how I felt about him becoming a child of the night, but in the end it worked for me. He adapted to it and the jokes he managed were the best! “Because I forsee many romantic picnics in our future. You, drinking a virgin piña colada. Me, drinking the blood of a virgin.” **SPOILER**

This was a beautifully written sentence: “Inside him the cold of fall battled with the memory of summer.”

What I disliked:

The Jace and Clary thing. I understand the story there and in the first book it made sense- long lost brother and sister who met not knowing they were related and ended up falling for each other only to find out they are siblings. That is where it should stop. It seemed as if they were trying to end it, but then certain events would throw them back together such as the seen in the Faerie Court. I thought that part could have been left out. I am not going to bash this storyline as incest, but it needs to end.

I haven’t figured out why all of a sudden in this book there are random Bible verses thrown into the mix. I am a Christian and I enjoy a good fantasy book about demons and angels every once in awhile, but I don’t see why we need to bring the Bible into it. The first book was good and it made sense, sticking random verses in there didn’t really help the story.

What I thought overall:

I really, really enjoyed this book. I am so glad I didn’t give up on the series after the first book, because City of Ashes was definitely worth my time. It made me laugh on multiple occasions and held me on the edge of my seat. I honestly couldn’t put it down. Can’t wait to start the next one. Do I recommend reading it? Yes (but only after reading City of Bones).


Top Ten Tuesday #2

Top Ten TuesdayIt’s Tuesday, so it is time for Top Ten Tuesday, a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is: Character’s I Wish Could Get Their Own Book.


  1. Finnick Odair from The Hunger Games — I loved reading about Finnick. He had to be my favorite character of The Hunger Game’s series and, honestly, I don’t think his fate was fair. I would love to read about his time in the games and about what happens to his wife and child after the third book. I need more!
  2. Simon Lewis from The Mortal Instruments — Can I just stop for a second and say that Simon is my favorite! I could read about his nerdy, sweet, and awkward ways all day long.
  3. Their Children from Harry Potter — Who doesn’t want more Harry Potter in their life? I was so sad when the series finally came to an end. I liked that she gave us some closure toward the end about what happened, but I would really like to read a book about the main character’s kids. That was just be fantastic.
  4. Gale Hawthorne from The Hunger Games — So you never really find out what happens to Gale and that kind of irritates me. All you hear about is Peeta and I am not a Peeta fan. I always rooted for Gale and I feel like he deserved better than the ending he got.
  5. The Other Victors from The Hunger Games — I find the whole “hunger games” concept fascinating, but wish there was more. They always talk about the previous games, but actually having a story written about them would be so cool. I would love to get insight on previous arenas and strategies. Perhaps a book of short stories.
  6. Ronnie & Will from The Last Song — I really liked Ronnie and Will’s relationship and I wish it could go on forever. If only there was maybe a novella letting me know if they made it.
  7. Initiates from Divergent —  I would love to have learned about the initiates lives before they chose their faction. I would love to get insight on lives of the different factions instead of just focusing on Dauntless.
  8. The Maddox Brothers from Beautiful Disaster — So ya, the Beautiful books are part of my guilty pleasures and I find the whole Maddox family intriguing. I know there is a book about one of the brothers, but I hope they all get their own stories.
  9. Owen & Annabel from Just Listen — I really have a soft spot for Sarah Dessen couples, but I remember wishing I could read more about Owen and Annabel. It would be nice if every once in awhile her book had a sequel or an epilogue that let you know what happens to the characters a few years down the road.
  10. Jordan McAfee from The Pact, Salem Falls, & Nineteen Minutes — I always get excited when characters overlap in books that have nothing to do with one another. Jordan McAfee is one of those characters. You see glimpses of how his life evolves, but I would love a book that is all to do with him becoming who he is.