Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2)” as Want to Read:
City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

City of Ashes

(The Mortal Instruments #2)

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  830,928 ratings  ·  31,762 reviews
Also see: Alternate Cover Editions for this ISBN [ACE]
ACE #1

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 mea
Hardcover, 1st Edition, 453 pages
Published March 25th 2008 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about City of Ashes, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
k-bookee The series isn't the same as the movie. Jamie Campbell Bower is a better Jace Wayland, both in looks and acting. Let's all hope that there will be a s…moreThe series isn't the same as the movie. Jamie Campbell Bower is a better Jace Wayland, both in looks and acting. Let's all hope that there will be a second movie with all the former actors reprising their role. Just love Lily Collins so much. ^^(less)
Haley Its because Hugo means Hugin. In City of bones when Hodge had Hugo/Hugin attack Clary to get the Mortal cup we shortly found out after that Hugo also …moreIts because Hugo means Hugin. In City of bones when Hodge had Hugo/Hugin attack Clary to get the Mortal cup we shortly found out after that Hugo also meant Hugin.(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.13  · 
Rating details
 ·  830,928 ratings  ·  31,762 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2)
Mar 19, 2011 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book cost me around 600 dollars.

When I'm traveling to and from conventions, I use the airplane time to catch up on my reading. A lot of times this means I'm taking the opportunity to read books that have been popular for a while, but that I haven't gotten around to. I feel like I should be aware of the landscape.

Anyway, on my way home from Seattle, I had a layover in Minneapolis. I grabbed this book so I'd have something to read while I was eating dinner in the airport.

So I ate dinner, a
Emma Giordano
Apr 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I guess 9th times the charms because I loved this book way more than I ever had. I think in my adolescence, I spent a lot of my time comparing City of Ashes to other books in the series. This reread, I viewed this story as an individual entity, which allowed me to better appreciate the complexities and conflicts that arise in this sequel. I had such a fabulous time rereading book two and cannot wait to continue rereading the rest of the series!
John Egbert
Apr 05, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Fans of City of Ashes, Fans of The Mortal Instruments
John no longer uses this account. I have no patience for this bullshit any longer. There are many ways to state an opinion that is in disagreement with this review, and so far, many of you have FAILED to do so. I will no longer tolerate disparaging comments. Rethink them if you don't want me to delete them.

John's Sister

PS: John is not male. She changed her gender status so she would not receive misogynistic comments, or gendered insults. JFYI.

I will tell the complete and honest truth. An
Apr 04, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, on-app, ya
3.25/5 ⭐

Full review on my Blog: The Dacian She-Wolf 🐺

I honestly have no idea what’s wrong either with this series or with me or with the both of us but...we don’t really have chemistry. Why? Dunno. I don’t really feel all the everything that’s going on there.

The thing is, I feel like nothing really happens in there and this second book has almost the same pattern as City of Bones : the bad guy wants something, he raises a whole army to get it, he gets it, the good guys get involved and fi
The Burning Rose (Jess)
2019: 4.5/5 stars. It was a fun read. My opinion hasn’t changed since the last time I read the book- Simon, I love you <3
In addition, I must point out that I am really not a fan of Clace. They annoy me, especially in this book. Too bad most of the book was around them. I couldn't enjoy Isabelle, Alec or Magnus because they aren't so much in this book. I actually really miss them.
I hope Clary's character grows up already, as there were quite a few passages where I wanted to fucking slap her.
Chelsea Humphrey
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Chelsea by: Emma Giordano
4.5 STARS ❤️

I keep sitting down to write a full (read-long) review of this book because I enjoyed it so much, but I struggle so hard on writing my thoughts for sequels in a long running series. I know I'm not supposed to include spoilers in them (even though this book is older than both of my children's ages combined), so it's tough to talk about a book to readers involved in The Mortal Instruments. Either you've already read the book and likely are not looking for any additional insights into t
Picking up where 'City of Bones' left off, 'City of Ashes' doesn't waste any time before plunging you right back into this supernatural world. This book was packed with action and adventure. With ever-changing information and plenty of teenage angst, this cast of characters tries to stay one step ahead of Valentine, making for a highly entertaining read.

Still reeling from the news that they're siblings, Jace and Clary struggle with their feelings toward one another. Awkward doesn't begin to desc
Jul 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Cara by: Victoria
I didn't go online, hardly talked, didn't eat (ok so I did eat), didn't watch TV just so I could finish this book. So basically I spent the whole day reading and I'm just bursting at the seams to read the next one.

The tension in the book is so great that you feel like the characters are literally going to break from the strain. Clary's mother is still in a coma and her relationships with Simon and Jace are fragile. At one point you just feel so down for everyone. Clary seemed to be getting in th
Dec 17, 2010 rated it liked it
Well that was awkward.


But before we head down the path of outrageous incest, I will say that City of Ashes was better than City of Bones. The pace was an improvement on that of the latter. Simon was still awesome as ever. I also felt that Ms Clare branched out a wee bit with her creativity with the Vampire transformation stuff, (except that I knew it was coming thanks to a certain Filipino minx who spilt the beans in a comment. You know who you are).

As for the abomination that
Aug 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

City of Ashes, the second installment in Cassie Clare's beloved Mortal Instruments series, has officially sealed the deal:

I am a Shadowhunter fan.

Someone is murdering Downworlder children in New York City; Clary's hometown.

Clary and crew, fear that the evil Valentine, the Darth Vader of the Shadowhunter realm, may be behind the brutal killings.

But how can they prove it, find him and most importantly, stop him?

I love how Clare continues to build out the world in this sequel. The stak
shady boots
I can't do it. I just can't.

Screw this series.

My problem with this series isn't the writing. I'm not one to judge books by the writing since I am pretty terrible at it myself. My problem also isn't exactly the story, which I probably could like. Sort of. I think. I don't know. But anyways, my main problem isn't any of that.

It's the characters.

How can you continue with a series when you feel nothing but pure hatred towards the characters? They all just infuriated me to no end. Jace Wayland especi
1.) City of Bones ★★★

“You are an arrow shot directly into the heart of the Clave, Jace. You are Valentine’s arrow. Whether you know it or not.”

I recently did a poll on Twitter, asking people if I should continue on with this series, or just throw in the towel and read Lady Midnight. I will say that the majority vote was for me to just skip it all, but so many of my best friends wrote to me and pleaded with me not to. So, here I am, continuing on.

I truly enjoyed City of Bones more tha
i am pushing through this. slowly, but i promise, i am. i really hope i dont end up resenting this series by the end of it. right now, im not hating it. but i still cant find anything worth immediately loving.

like 'city of bones,' im still not terribly impressed with the writing and the characters are pretty meh (although, alec has significantly grown on me!). but there seems to be something that is keeping me from hating this completely. is it because i need answers? are jace and clary actually
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
#1 City of Bones ★★★★☆
#2 City of Ashes ★★★☆☆
#3 City of Glass ★★★★☆
#4 City of Fallen Angels ★★★★★
#5 City of Lost Souls ★★★★★
#6 City of Heavenly Fire

I was originally going to give this installment 4 stars like I did with the first one, but after I thought about it for a while (er… the two freaking months it took me to get around to reviewing it, that is), I ultimately decided that I couldn’t really justify it, no matter how much I loved the ending. You see, my problem with Ashes is that, while th
Warning ⚠: This book may give you a headache. Mind you, not just any headache. I-want-to-bang-my-head-against-a-wall kind of headache.

Being stuck in traffic, slow Wi-Fi, freezing laptop/phone, noisy neighbours and screaming children annoy the shit out of me. That was before I read this book.

There are so many things that drove me insane, which one do I choose?

📌Extremely sulky female protagonist a.k.a Clary?
📌 Lovers-to-siblings trope or is it Lovers-to-siblings-to-lovers trope? (It was atleast
demi. ♡
❥ 1 / 5 stars - DNF @ 39%

I’m done. I couldn’t continue it. This is too boring and some characters are super annoying especially Clary and Jace. I found no reason why I should love these two although they are two main characters of the series. I almost DNF it once since 1/5 of the book when Clary and Simon had just kissed and then, she thought of her kiss with Jace and compared them. My mind was like ‘What’s wrong with you, Clary?’ ‘You learned the truth that Jace is your brother and you still th
Hailey (Hailey in Bookland)
These books are really enjoyable, even the 2nd time around. I just love how much of a sarcastic asshole Jace is.
This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription

“I’ve heard the word ‘fear’. I simply choose to believe it doesn’t apply to me.”

🌟 Let’s start this review by spilling some tea; you probably know that this book may have started as a Harry Potter fanfiction and that it has been controversial for the author for years now! I may have noticed some similarities but it didn’t affect my overall view of the book.

🌟 Long story short is that I enjoyed Book 1 more than this on
Jun 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"It’s not just that someone belongs to you, it’s that you give yourself to them.”

A year long, shadowhunter buddy read with my fellow Will Herondale lover? What’s not to love!

It’s with a heavy heart that I’m giving this 4 stars don’t get me wrong I love CASSANDRA CLARE so much. She’s 1000000000% my favourite author. This was initially a five stars for me when I first read this book, but there’s this nagging feeling in me that really really hates the whole Simon - Clary - Jace triangle, and Clary
Jun 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. There are parts of the book that are brilliant, then then there are parts that are just ok. The main reason I could not give this book 5 stars is parts of seemed rushed (if that is possible in a 411 page book).

The book is divided into 3 sections. In the first Cassandra a does a great job of of writing the emotional states of all the characters. Clary and Jace's emotional upheaval at the revelation they are actually brother and sister. Clary seemed to be trying to hand
Jessica's Totally Over The Top Book Obsession
4 Family Matters Stars

 photo 9774471_zpsxjbpt6ny.gif


Short and sweet so I can get to the next book. Wow City of Ashes was action packed and full of teenage angst. And I loved it! I feel this book focused a lot on Simon and all the changes that happen to him. I liked seeing the character growth in this book for Clary, Jace, Simon, Alec, and Izzy. I really didn't like Maryse, I felt like she really let Jace down. Poor Jace it was like no one loved Jace. Everyone turned their back on him or let him down even Clary.
Nov 29, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1-star, re-read-2020
(re-read 11/29/20)

5 stars ✨ if I could I would give it all the stars in the universe 🤩 GR needs to fix it's rating system to be able to give a book a gadjzillion stars 🌠

This book was awesome! THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CLARY AND JACE WAS EVERYTHING! They are my OTP 😍 Jace is bae, and Clary is my role model 😘 SOOOO PRECIOUS!🤗 Clary just ALWAYS uplifts everyone and they both carry this series. Never, ever,EVER, will you catch either of these magnificent characters being rude or arragont, and that is
Vi Vi
Mar 29, 2011 rated it did not like it
"That when he thought, really thought, about the fact that he might never get to kiss Clary again, he wanted to die or hurt or bleed so badly he’d go up to the attic and train alone for hours until he was so exhausted he had no choice but to pass out, exhausted."

Oh for fuck's sake.

"He’d have bruises in the morning, bruises and cuts and scraped skin and if he could have named all his injuries they would have had the same name: Clary, Clary, Clary."


"If there had ever been any ho
Dec 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I'm beginning to understand why people prefer Jace Wayland to Edward Cullen.

I have to OH SNAP the ending. Is it March yet? I want City of Glass NOW.
Tina ➹ the girl who lives in Fandoms
4.5 Golden Stars

it was better than the first book as the story was going on as I expected (thrilling!)
the end was stunning!
more fun! more exciting!

"Almost extinct is NOT EXTINCT ENOUGH"

ahahaha! have some word of wisdom! XD
I love these characters!

one of my fav in the series.
Plot: ★★★★(★)/5
World building: ★★★★★/5
Characters: ★★★★★/5
Written Style: ★★★★★/5 (fun!)
Idea: ★★★★★/5
general factors on City of bones review :)
Pearl Angeli
Reread: January, 2016
1st Read : July, 2014

This series continues to amaze me! I loved it the first time I read it and even gets better the second time around. There are lots of crazy and hilarious moments in this installment. The characters are all engaging and the way they interact really entertains me. I especially love Simon and Jace's banters here. And that part when they went to The Seelie Court-- my favorite part! Although Jace kind of disappoints me with his moody attitude, I still can't r
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
For the love of God! Will someone kill Valentine already? He's getting on my last nerve!

Okay here I am having read the second book again. I have one more to go and then I will be reading the ones I haven't read yet. As I was going along I could remember it so that's a good thing!

Oh and I will be adding SPOILERS for those that haven't read it yet. And look at my beautiful UK edition ♥


Although, it would be a better picture if I would actually get up and make a pretty scene but I digress.

So Simon
May 27, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
*i just realized how most of the main character kids have nicknames... also Clary is legitimately so overly dramatic. and can the book stop talking about how fucking handsome Jace supposedly is??

this book felt kinda messy in a way (that was definitely not the right word) where things happened for this reason but it ended a different way.

Example: the Seelie Queen requested a meeting with Clary, Jace, Simon, and Isabelle (also can we just think about how a Queen of a powerful race wanted to meet w
Jan 14, 2013 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Do not touch this book if you value your brain cells.
The following review is filled with spoilers, whining, complaining, ranting, and the destruction of everything people love about this series. Please read responsibly.

When last we left our intrepid heroes, Clary "Mary Sue" Frey discovered she was part of a super special group of people called Shadowhunters. (That should be two words, by the way.) She falls for shmexy jerk-face Jace, only to find out that he is her brother and that they are the long lost children of stock baddie, Valent... Oh, I c
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Hush, Hush (Hush, Hush, #1)
  • Insurgent (Divergent, #2)
  • Shadow and Bone (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #1)
  • Siege and Storm (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #2)
  • Eclipse (The Twilight Saga, #3)
  • Breaking Dawn (The Twilight Saga, #4)
  • Ruin and Rising (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #3)
  • The Elite (The Selection, #2)
  • Allegiant (Divergent, #3)
  • The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #2)
  • Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2)
  • A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2)
  • New Moon (The Twilight Saga, #2)
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1)
  • The Titan's Curse (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #3)
  • The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1)
  • Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)
  • The One (The Selection, #3)
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Hello Goodreadsers. Here's my official bio:

"Cassandra Clare was born overseas and spent her early years traveling around the world with her family and several trunks of fantasy books. Cassandra worked for several years as an entertainment journalist for the Hollywood Reporter before turning her attention to fiction. She is the author of City of Bones, the first book in the Mortal Instruments trilo

Other books in the series

The Mortal Instruments (6 books)
  • City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1)
  • City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3)
  • City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments, #4)
  • City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments, #5)
  • City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6)

Related Articles

  As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of...
75 likes · 14 comments
“I don't want to be a man," said Jace. "I want to be an angst-ridden teenager who can't confront his own inner demons and takes it out verbally on other people instead."
"Well," said Luke, "you're doing a fantastic job.”
“We came to see Jace. Is he alright?"
"I don't know," Magnus said. "Does he normally just lie on the floor like that without moving?”
More quotes…