(Double) Book Review: City of Ashes and City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

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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?

By now, everyone is aware of my OBSESSION with all things SHADOWHUNTER. (It is becoming super, super hard to say whether I like TID or TMI more, but I'm leaning towards TID for some reason even though I hate Tessa. Possibly because of Will and Jem and Charlotte and Jessamine and Henry. Although I do love Jace and Simon and Isabelle and Alec. And I love Magnus from both, obviously.)

The thing about Cassie's writing is her CHARACTERS. OMIGOODNESS. Especially her SUPPORTING CHARACTERS. It's not so much her heroines - somehow the characters around them seem so much more complex. Like Will and Jem are so much more layered than Tessa is. And Jace is so much more complicated than Clary. Sometimes it even gets to the point where it seems like the MCs are simply vessels through which Cassie can communicate her awesome supporting characters. I mean, I'm fine with that, because I LOVE LOVE LOVE Shadowhunters, but I don't know. Hopefully The Dark Artifices will have a good heroine. Emma Carstairs sounds pretty kick-butt. :)

Anyhow, City of Ashes was reeeallly good. Unfortunately, the whole time JACE IS CLARY'S BROTHER AND THAT IS SOOOO NOT COOL >:( also, it makes everything awkward between Simon and Clary when I'm screaming SIMON AND IZZY NEED TO GET TOGETHER, OBVIOUSLY. 

And it seems like Cassie is one of those incredibly gifted people who can keep a story going, awesomely and with a fast pace, using third-person past tense. I, for one, seem to be completely incapable of doing this (The Universe Quilt COUGH COUGH COUGH). So of course she deserves a huge pat on the back for that. (Actually, a huge pat on the back would amount to more of a slap, so maybe not.)


To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters - never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City - whatever the cost?

This book - this book - this book - IT IS THE BEST TMI BOOK SO FAR. :'D

The stakes become epic and the final battle in Alicante is like BOOM BOOM BOOM AND I WAS JUST SITTING THERE LIKE OH MY OH MY OH MY OH MY OH MY GOOSSSSHH. Every twenty minutes or so I had to kind of pause and take a few deep breaths. Not because of the book, but because I was drowning in the general awesomeness.

Like I said above, the supporting characters that Cassie creates are just GENIUS. And they really come into their own here in City of Glass - especially Jace. His personality and the sort of self-destructive internal journey that he takes is just heartbreaking. The conflict between what he THINKS is his demonic nature (and therefore his "father", Valentine) and what he wants to be, particularly with Clary, is something that I really loved. Like, masterful. ("Masterful" is always an adjective I've wanted to have someone describe my work with. Unfortunately, as of now that occurrence is highly unlikely. *sigh*)

The only thing that confused me was that Alec had never killed a demon before Glass, right? So why was no one making a big deal about the fact that he killed like a thousand demons out in the battle? This bothered me probably more than it should have XD

The conclusive scene, the whole climax - it was amazing. I MEAN RAZIEL JUST LIKE EXPLODED OUT OF LAKE LYN AND TOTALLY PWNED VALENTINE AND AGGGGGGHHHHHH AND THEN JACE AND CLARY AND GAH. I think at that point I was this close *opens fingers just over a millimeter away from each other* to fainting. The only thing, though, about this scene was the indirectness of it all. I mean, when it came down to it, the only person who defeated Valentine was Valentine himself. (I mean you could say the Angel Raziel did it, but Valentine summoned the Angel, so...) So maybe Clary did do that underhanded little rune thing with the ritual. But that was in a moment of weakness and desperation. And I did get that she wanted Jace alive and so she used her wish on him (I MEAN WHO DOESN'T WANT JACE ALIVE? JACE IS LIKE... JACE JACE JACE *swoons*). But that might just set City of Fallen Angels up for a whole bunch of "I love you" gushiness. And that would not look good with Jace, because Jace isn't a gushy person.

Anyhow, I'm being too critical. City of Glass really was breathtaking, and amazing and awesome and *trails away into incoherent fangirl babble*...

So I'm going to go read Fallen Angels now, okay everyone? :)
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