Monday, October 31, 2011

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? 

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.

First off, I'm aware that this is my second post in a day after barely having posted for about a week. Sorry.  The lack of power makes my reading go more quickly.

So, this book.  There's not a whole lot more to say about this book that I haven't already said about CoB. Clare still abuses metaphors.  She still has unrealistic dialogue and witty lines.  I still love Jace and Magnus. I still hate Clary and Simon.  Cassie Clare can still tell a story.

I will say that I don't think the cover of this one is quite as gorgeous as the cover of the first. It's still beautiful, a lot better than most, but I just adore CoB's book cover. It's one of my favorite. So beautiful and shiny and eye-catching.

Also, something that I forgot to mention in the last review that bugs me about this series: the magic, and the world-building in general.  I feel like there are no . . . rules. Like their magic and their tricks have no limit.  Clare never clearly defines what different instruments and different creatures/Shadowhunters are and are not capable of doing.  It really frustrates me when this happens in a fantasy or paranormal series, because in doing that you're basically making your characters invincible.  They can get out of any scrape, because some sort of magically magical magic will save them.  They'll find a way to magically heal or project their images or kill something when they should be fucking dead!  So, yeah. That bugged me.

Oh, and another thing--maybe it's just me, but I feel like Clare uses demon poison whenever it would be inconvenient for a person to be immediately healed.  Like, Oh, I can't have you out and about right now? Lol, there was demon poison in your wound. No iratzes for you!

Lastly--Valentine. I just realized I also didn't address him in my last review.  I'm gonna be honest, I like him as a villain. Do I see the similarities between him and He Who Must Not Be Named? Yes.  But something I actually like about Valentine that you will not see in our other famous villain is that Valentine, in the end, is really just a man whose moral compass is skewed, not nonexistent.  Because the fact is, he really believes he is doing right. He believes he is doing what is the best for this world. And I really like it when a villain isn't just pure evil, when there's a reason behind what they do, when they have layers.  

(I lied. That wasn't last. The last thing I wanted to say was that I really liked Maryse's character.  I thought she was very well-developed and really liked the relationship between her and Jace.)

So, yeah. This was more of a ramble than a review. If you want to look for an actual review, look at my review of City of Bones.  For now, just know that my feelings on this series remain the same.
3 stars.


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