City of Ashes by Cassangra Clare Reviewed by Krista Ellis


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? Clary would love to spend more time with her bestfriend, Simon. But the Shadowhunters won’t 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 her father. When the second of the Mortal Instruments is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor suspects Jace. Could Jace really be willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?

How would you feel if you found out you had a sibling that you don’t know about? Clary, Simon, Jace Alec and Isabelle are back in the second book to the City of Bones series. And this time we find out what happens between Clary and Jace, and how they’re handling their new brother-sister relationship with each other. While Simon and Clary begin a budding romance and sharing their affection for each other until the night at the Seelie Court, which instantly changes things between them and changes Simon’s life forever as he begins living life as a vampire. While I really enjoyed reading this I made sure that I looked for the vocabulary, theme and setting.

As I continue reading the series, the vocabulary gets stranger and wierder, in a good way. Cassandra Clare uses the grammar differently with the spelling.Like the way she used the word faeries instead of saying fairies. Which gave me the idea that a faerie was a bit edgier and darker than a fairy, because faeries are downworlders. Not only was it the grammar, it was also the vivid descriptions that kept me interested, because I found it incredible and I really enjoyed it.

Although I have in the past, I did not figure out what the theme of the book was. And even if I would’ve found it, I think it would be the same as it was in City of Bones, which was, “Fight for what you believe is right.”

The setting of the novel, along with the first book in the series, took place in New York City. Some of the places mentioned in the novel are actually well known or familiar because of it being in the last book. Like the Institute or the Bone City where Jace was supposed to be imprisoned, the night before he was going to trial with the Inquisitor. Where Valentine had attacked the City and killed every one of the Silent Brothers. Or the Hudson River. It was mentioned before in the previous book as a peaceful spot, but in this book, the Hudson River is the scene of war between the Shadowhunters and Valentine’s demon army.

Overall I really liked the book and hope to read the next book Cassandra Clare has to offer in the series. I hope the theme will be easy to detect in the next book, I already know that the vocabulary will blow me away and I think that the next book will have a nice setting. I highly recommend that students should read the series because it is amazing and they’ll fall in love with it.


5 responses

  1. I love how you used an example from the text to discuss and describe the different usage in grammar and then continued on to explain why you think the author did this. I also enjoyed how you used a question in your second paragraph (“How would you feel if you found out you had a sibling that you don’t know about?”) in order to evoke thought and pull the reader into your review. I see that you had some problem finding a theme in this novel which is fine, yet, because you assumed that the theme was again “Fight for what you believe is right” I would have liked it if you provided an example as to why you believe this may be the theme. Overall this is a VERY well written paper and I believe you did a great job.

    1. Thank you

    2. kristaleanneellis1998 | Reply

      Dear RHerb,

      I know its been a while since we last an conversation and I would like to continue our chats so 😀 …… I would like to thank you for the nice comment about how I used the question in the second paragraph to evoke thought and pull the reader into my view, I thought it was great to have someone other than my teacher to notice my mistakes and what I can improve or keep doing and that means a lot to me whenever I write essays or short stories or something like that and it helps it really does. So once again thank you for the advice and hope to chat with you soon :).

  2. Krista,

    Nice job on this book review! I really like your opening statement, “How would you feel if you found out you had a sibling that you don’t know about?” I have always wondered how I would respond to something like that! That is a great way to introduce the novel. You did a great job providing specific details from the novel to back up the points you made. However, there are a few things that need a little attention. The first things that caught my attention were the place in which you started your sentences with things such as “And” as well as “Like”. Instead of starting your sentences that way, try adding those phrases to the sentence before. For instance you could say, “Cassandra Clare uses grammar differently with the spelling; for example, she used the word faeries instead of saying fairies.” Also, I would like for you to explore an discuss reasons you felt the theme of this novel may be the same as the first. You state that it is the same, but I would like to know more about why you feel that way. Provide the reader with specific details from the text that led you to that conclusion. Overall, this is a great review! Keep up the good work and I look forward to reading more of your work!

    1. thank you, I’m glad you liked it

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