Wednesday, December 2, 2009

What do you do when you find out the boy you like is your brother?

This is only one of the problems facing Clary Fray in the second installment of Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments series.
Clary Fray is going through some major crises. First she finds out that she is a demon slaying Shadowhunter; Simon, her best friend, just told her that he loves her; the boy she is crushing on , Jace, is probably her brother; her mother is in the hospital in a magical coma; and her newly discovered father is trying to take over the world and summoning an army of killer demons to help him.
City of Ashes picks up where City of Bones, the first in the series, leaves off. Having defeated her father, Valentine, for now Clary tries to pick up the shattered pieces he left. Clary begins her search for the cure to what is wrong with her mother this search leads her into the heart of the supernatural world her mother kept hidden from her since she was a baby. Clary also tries to deal with Simon's feeling for her and her feelings for Jace. Because Valentine claimed Jace and Clary are both his children Jace feels sickened by the fact that he loves Clary, Clary on the other hand refuses to believe Valentine but for Jace's sake tries to bury her feeling for him by attempting to date Simon. If that isn't enough for one girl to deal with we find out that Valentine is murdering downworlder (supernaturals that aren't Shadowhunters) children and
has stolen the second of the mortal instruments that he needs to take over the world.
During her search Clary is summoned to the faerie realm she brings Jace, Simon, and her new shadowhunter friend Isabelle with her. While in the fairy realm Clary is forced by the queen into kissing Jace. After seeing the passion between Jace and Clary Simon runs off to the vampire hotel he was kept captive in in the first book where instead of killing him like he wants he is turned.
City of Ashes is not your average fantasy book; Clary is a heroine you will feel compassion for as she struggles with her world crashing down around her. I think this a fun and exciting book that deals with real world issues in a gritty and honest manner, however; I don't think that it is important for teens or teachers to read on it's own, which isn't to say I don't think it shouldn't be read because it should. I think Cassandra Clare is a fantastic writer but City of Ashes will leave you confused unless you read the prequel, City of Bones, first.


Hutting said...

My 14 year old daughter read the whole series and loved the books. Even through Clare said this was a trilogy, she announced recently that the next book in the series will be out in May of 2010.All the books in the series are very long over 500 pages each, but the storyline is fast - paced reading.

Clarissa H. said...

Wow! What a story line! I really liked your attention grabber. It drew me right into reading your review of what seems like a somewhat chaotic, but very original fantasy novel. Had you read the first book in the series before reading the second?

Paige said...

Sounds like a good read, I think this would be good for young adults to read, because of what seems like continuous action. This series seems like it is full of action, and that it will keep the attention of young adult readers.

schenieka hoskins said...

Wow, the book does seem exciting. You do a great job of describing the plot with giving history of the first sequel, but not getting to lost in it. Like others mentioned it does seem as if there is one adventure after another. However, I was wondering is there a sort of reoccurring theme throughout the book. Moreover, I am worried with the need to read the first book to understand the next. I think that as a writer you have the responsibility to ensure that your book can be effective and good standing along. I know that this is tricky because you want the sequels to coincide in a way, but each should be able to be fully understood and enjoyed without the other in my opinion. Consequently, I agree maybe this book would probably be too complex for young adult readers to read without instruction.

averch said...

I agree that this book sounds more of an older young adult read then a younger one. However, that in mind, it sounds like an awesome read and plenty of action to keep the reader in tune with the book. I must add that your title is awesome. It defintily stopped me in my tracks and made me read on.