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.
Once I finished City of Bones, I had to rush onto City of Ashes to find out what happened. After all, while I, the reader, did not trust Valentine, I was interested to see how the author pulled Clary and Jace out of the new entanglement.
Clary’s mother is still in a coma and nobody can figure out how to get her out. Downworlders (In the Mortal Instruments universe, a downworlder is a ‘Mundane’ which is a normal human who has been mixed with demon such as a fae, lycanthrope, or vampire) are popping up dead with their blood drained. The Clave doesn’t trust Jace anymore because he has been outed as Valentine’s son. And to add insult to injury, Simon gets attacked and bled… twice.
While I loved the story, I had issues with the narration. They chose an entirely different narrator for this book as opposed to the first book in the series. While Natalie Moore did a nice job of narrating, suddenly all of the Shadow Hunters’ voices were different. While the narrator of City of Bones had everyone from Idress with a British accent, Natalie Moore made them all sound American. Not only that, but there is a weapon all Shadow Hunters carry called a Stele. While Whitman (from book 1) pronounced it “Steelie”, Moore pronounced it “Stehlay”. When one is dealing with an entirely new ‘world’ which any urban fantasy universe is, things like that can truly throw off the book. I’m now listening to Book 3 City of Glass, and that word still pops me out of the story for several seconds because I got used to “steelie” and now “stehlay” drives me nuts.
However, even with those narration issues, I still give the book a full 5 stars.
Story Rating: 5 stars
Audio Rating: 4 stars
Overall Rating: 5 stars