Study Guide

City of Ashes Betrayal

By Cassandra Clare


Is there a Zodiac sign from Betrayal? There should be—every character in City of Ashes must have been born under the sign of the weasel. And we're not just talking about the alleged bad guys.

The "good" guys do their own share of betraying their friends and hurting their feelings. But if everyone was kind and trustworthy, we wouldn't have a tautly plotted book, would we? An act of betrayal happens in the first chapter, which sets all the events of the book into motion.

Questions About Betrayal

  1. Valentine has pretty much betrayed everyone by this point—Jace, Clary, Maryse, the Inquisitor, etc. Does he treat all of these people the same way, or does he betray each person differently?
  2. Do you believe Maryse actually distrusts Jace?
  3. Why doesn't the Inquisitor believe Jace? Does his behavior give him a reason to distrust him, or is she blinded by her own rage toward Valentine?

Chew on This

By not being honest about her feelings for Simon, Clary ends up hurting him far worse with her dishonest betrayal.

Valentine betrays everyone because he is only true to one person—himself.