Clary Fray and Jace Wayland have many problems: dealing with the news that they are brother and sister, especially after their kiss in the City of Bones, their psychopathic father, Valentine Morgenstern, and their comatose mother, Jocelyn Fray. All the while they and their friends Isabelle and Alec Lightwood and Simon Lewis have to deal with the undercurrent of unease due to Valentine's actions against the Clave.
Clary and Jace still have feelings for each other and it’s very obvious throughout the book to everyone. Personally, I don’t believe they really are siblings. I think Valentine is psychotic enough to lie to Jace to get him to do what he wants, trying to take his father’s place. I think Valentine was hoping Jace would feel…compelled to side with him if he believed he was Jace’s father.
We meet several new characters, including the rest of the Lightwoods and the Inquisitor of the Clave, Imogen Herondale. It irritated me that we didn’t find out how to pronounce Maryse Lightwood’s name until the second book, even though she was spoken about in the first. It’s May-ris, not Mah-ris, like Marissa, like I was thinking it was. We meet Luke’s pack more in depth and a court full of faeries, the Seelie Court and their Queen. Several new demons are also introduced in this story, expanding on the danger Clary and her friends are facing, such as Agramon, the Greater demon of Fear.
Speaking of Valentine...even though I think he's insane, he makes a good villain. He believes in his mission and really believes he's right and doing the best he can to protect the world from those that could corrupt and destroy it. Even though he's basically destroying it himself. I have a feeling he'd agree with the saying, "the ends justify the means". I also think Valentine's 'days are numbered'.
Early in the story, Jace faces a difficult decision, which puts him at odds with Inquisitor Imogen. Should he stand with his father and possibly spare his friends and loved ones? Or turn Valentine down and stand against him and his army of demons led by Agramon? Due to the consequences of his actions, he discovers he has a special gift.
Some of the parts I find interesting:
I loved the way the stele, the special weapon of the Shadowhunters, was described in this book. It was much more descriptive and helpful than the first book was. It was very interesting.
I also liked the expansion on Clary's special gifts. It was amazing and she's got incredible talent with the runes used by the Shadowhunter society.
Also, bits and verses from the Bible are interwoven throughout this book. I can't remember off the top of my head if it was the same for CoB.
I’m going to give this book a 3.5 outta 5 stars. Several things working together made this story’s rating drop. It had such a slow beginning, I almost gave up on it. Also, several character’s took the Lord’s Name in vain and I don’t like that or a couple of characters being gay. I don’t agree with those things.
Have you read City of Ashes? Will you be reading it now? Lemme know what you think in the comments!