City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

City_of_AshesTitleCity of Ashes

Author: Cassandra Clare

ISBN: 978-1416972242

Publication Date: 2008

Genre: Fantasy

Reading Level/Interest Age: 15 and up

Plot: Continuing after the previous book, there is more of a grim atmosphere in the air. Clary’s mother is in a magically induced coma and she is trying all that she can to get her mother out of it. Jace is suspected to be partners with Valentine which makes him a wanted man. Even though Clary and Jace love each other, they must deny that they do after learning that they are siblings.  Later they all discover that the second Mortal Instrument – the Soul-Sword – has been stolen. On top of all this, there is an evil force that is killing Downworlder children (beings who are part human and part demon). Clary and the gang have questions that need to be answered and will do all that they can to find the answers.

Critical Evaluation: Clare creates more elaborate twists and turns in this portion of the Mortal Instrument series. Jace’s character is tested after learning that Clary is his sister and Valentine is his real father. The emotional struggle that Jace goes through has broken down his suave cool demeanor into a emotional and heartbroken teen. When the reader sees the internal struggle that Jace is facing, many teen readers can relate to him and can feel reassured that teenage boys are capable of having these feelings like what many girls experience.

Reader’s Annotation: More adventures and challenging quests lie ahead for the Shadowhunters.

Author: Retrieved from Cassandra Clares official website

“Cassandra Clare was born to American parents in Teheran, Iran and spent much of her childhood travelling the world with her family, including one trek through the Himalayas as a toddler where she spent a month living in her father’s backpack. She lived in France, England and Switzerland before she was ten years old.

Since her family moved around so much she found familiarity in books and went everywhere with a book under her arm. She spent her high school years in Los Angeles where she used to write stories to amuse her classmates, including an epic novel called “The Beautiful Cassandra” based on a Jane Austen short story of the same name (and  which later inspired her current pen name).

After college, Cassie lived in Los Angeles and New York where she worked at various entertainment magazines and even some rather suspect tabloids where she reported on Brad and Angelina’s world travels and Britney Spears’ wardrobe malfunctions. She started working on her YA novel, City of Bones, in 2004, inspired by the urban landscape of Manhattan, her favourite city. She turned to writing fantasy fiction full time in 2006 and hopes never to have to write about Paris Hilton again.

Cassie’s first professional writing sale was a short story called “The Girl’s Guide to Defeating the Dark Lord” in a Baen anthology of humor fantasy. Cassie hates working at home alone because she always gets distracted by reality TV shows and the antics of her two cats, so she usually sets out to write in local coffee shops and restaurants. She likes to work in the company of her friends, who see that she sticks to her deadlines.”

Curriculum Ties: N/A

Booktalking Ideas: N/A

Challenging Issues:

  • Religious viewpoints

Defensive Maneuvers:

  • I would be sure to study and memorize the library’s collection policy.
  • The Library Bill of Rights must also be brought to the challenger’s attention stating that the library is an information institution that provides both information and ideas.
  • Have both good and bad reviews (from respected sources) about the book at hand.
  • Remember to mention the awards and honors that the item has received.
  • Be sure to listen to the person who is challenging the book and do not interrupt them while they are speaking. Try to understand where the patron is coming from when he or she states their concerns about the material.
  • When you respond to the challenger, have a calm and respectable tone informing them that the library must do all that it can to provide intellectual freedom to its patrons, young and old.

Why This Book? Suspenseful thrills and increasing drama enticed me to keep reading throughout the book. I felt I could not close the book until I finished it.


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