NARRATOR: Natalie Moore
Welcome back to the exotic world beyond the shadows…
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.
This series just keeps getting better and better. With the cliffhanger from the first book, City of Bones, I had to dive into this one immediately after finishing — even now, reading this book for what’s now the third time!
While Cassandra Clare is somewhat formulaic in her stories, I still think she’s an amazing writer who can keep her readers engaged until the very end. This story, City of Ashes, is about Clary coming into her newfound powers, having to deal with her newfound brother — not boyfriend — Jace, and there’s still the hunt for Valentine.
To me, Valentine is like the Voldemort of these books. He’s there, he’s evil, and he just can’t stay away from the shadow hunters. I was crushed — crushed! — at the end of City of Bones when we found out that Jace and Clary were brother and sister and was still on pins and needles through this entire book awaiting the ending (<– this is how bad my memory is. I was still completely entranced by the book and had no clue what was going on. I knew bits and pieces but a lot of it was still a surprise.).
The best thing about Cassandra Clare’s writing is her characters. It’s hard not to love Jace — even if the narrator (a different one from the previous book) makes him sound snarky — and it’s easy to hate Simon. Even if Simon and Clary keep trying to have some kind of romantic connection, I just don’t see it because I hate Simon. I can never understand why Clary doesn’t hate him, too.
My only problem with these books — and with the characters — is that Clary never listens. She’s whiny and is constantly fawning over either Jace or Simon and just can’t make up her mind (which is a little reminiscent of a girl named Bella Swan). I’m not sure if it’s just the narrator of the audiobook, or if it’s Simon’s character in general, but I found him to be snarky, smug, and just an arrogant “butt-faced miscreant” (to quote the Gilmore Girls). He drove me nuts, to no end!
I did, however, really love Isabelle’s character (even if she sounded a bit ditzy) and I am completely enamoured with Magnus Bane. Even now, now that I’ve already listened to two of the audiobooks in this series, I’m still hesitant about listening to a female narrate Magnus, but each narrator has gotten it right. I can’t wait to finally listen to a male narrator in the fourth book of this series (and Ed Westwick, at that. A very swoon-worthy male!), and really, I’m quite happy to finally be reading this series again after so many years.
Like I’ve said, Cassandra Clare is just a darn good writer. She can suck you in from the first pages into her world of shadow hunters, werewolves, demons, warlocks … it’s just a great world to be in!
Read More Reviews of This Book
Read More of My Cassandra Clare Reviews
© 2012, Reading In Winter. All rights reserved.