The Duluth News Tribune praised City of Ashes, calling the book "gripping". The School Library Journal also praised the novel, comparing it to "like watching a particularly good vampire/werewolf movie". Kirkus Reviews enjoyed the book but warned that the "incestuous overtones might be too disturbing for some". Commonsensemedia gave the book four stars, calling it "gripping" while warning parents of the violence and potential incest. Seventeen Magazine gave a positive review, saying that the book was "smart, funny, romantic".
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