Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Book Review: Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices)

                                       Clockwork Angel


Tessa Gray is sixteen when she leaves America to look for her brother, Nathaniel, in London. She isn't expecting the vampires, warlocks or other supernatural beings that roam London's city streets. She finds herself kidnapped by the Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club. Even more shocking, Tessa discovers she also has a rare ability. She can transform into any other person at will. Unfortunately for Tessa, the Magister, the mysterious figure that runs the club, will stop at nothing to capture her and try to harness her power. Now the only thing keeping Tessa alive are the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons.  Now with the help of the Shadowhunters, can Tessa find her brother before the Magister finds her?

While I wouldn't add this novel to my list of most favorite novels of all time. Clockwork Angel was an interesting read.

Author, Casandra Clare, does an excellent job of portraying early--Victorian London and creates a realistic setting for her characters--blending steampunk, fantasy and supernatural elements all the while keeping with the customs during that time.

While it was initially hard for me to get past Clare's initial style of writing--which can be very detailed-- halfway into the book I decided that I liked the story.

I found Tessa's character to be somewhat annoying at first. While she was definitely in character for the time period, I found her obsession with being a "proper lady" annoying. The characters were somewhat cliched. There's Will, who is the snarky, smart-alecky, womanizer type; Gem ,who is the cute and quiet but deadly in a fight; Jessamine, who has the attitude of a 20th century high school cheerleader; and Tessa who is in every sense a "lady" but can hold her own in an argument. Eventually I grew to like their characters as well.

Despite it's slow start you can begin to see Tessa grow and develop as a character. She learns the ways of the shadowhunters and despite never being allowed to actually see battle because she is not a shadowhunter, she finds herself involved in a number of adventures and learns how to defend herself against the Downworlders. Overall, a decent start to the series.

Rating: 3/5

                                                                               Clockwork Prince


Tessa Gray has found safety with the shadowhunters but her safety may be short lived when some members of the Clave plot to get Charlotte removed as the leader of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position Tessa will lose her home at the Institute and will become easy prey for the Magister. As Tessa continues to live with the Shadowhunters she realizes that the Magister might have something to do with Charlotte's possible removal from the Institute. Can Tessa, Will and Jem keep Charlotte from losing her position as head of the Institute while keeping Tessa out of the Magistrate's reach?


I had really high hopes for the second novel in The Infernal Devices series. Really high hopes. I enjoyed the first novel enough but hoped that Clockwork Prince would do a little more to draw me in and make me really love the series.

Sadly, I wasn't a big fan of this novel at all. It normally takes me a week to read a 500 page novel. It took me almost a month to read this one novel and I still have not finished it. The storyline moved entirely too slowly and it seemed almost as if the spark had gone out of the storyline. There is some progression n the storyline of the characters but by chapter 16 I felt like I still hadn't learned enough about them to really like the characters. There's a plot but it becomes somewhat convoluted and confusing because there is so much focus given to the secondary plot.

I know I've said this before but I'm not much of a girly, girl and I am not the biggest fan of romance novels. However, I do like a typical amount of romance in the other genres I read. A little. Not enough to take away from the plot of the story but to add to it. Despite the larger problems going on (an impending war between the Downworlders and the Shadowhunters) the novel focuses entirely too much on the characters' love lives or lack thereof. I understand the romance slant is very important to this series but this is a fantasy novel. It almost seemed that the actual plot became second fiddle to a very poorly strung together love triangle that didn't ever really feel believable.

Maybe it's just not my cup of tea but I don't think I will pick up the third novel. I think I'll just stick to novels about zombies getting their heads ripped off.

Rating: 1/5



  1. I bought Cassandra's books a few months back but have yet to get to them. Must hurry up and get to it!



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