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The Clockwork Angel (Infernal Devices, Book 1) Hardcover – 31 Aug 2010
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"Mysteries, misdirection, and riddles abound. . . . Fans of the Mortal Instruments series and newcomers alike won't be disappointed." - Publishers Weekly
"Compulsively readable . . . Packed with battles, romantic entanglements, and tantalizing foreshadowing, this will have readers clamoring for the next installment." - Booklist
"Top Pick! Readers will be thrilled and amazed with this prequel to The Mortal Instruments, tearing their way through a beautifully constructed story of action, magic, mayhem, and romance. Fans and newcomers alike will be enchanted by Clare's fantastical world and left begging for more!" - Romantic Times Book Reviews
"A century before the events of Clare's Mortal Instruments trilogy . . . this crowdpleaser's tension-filled conclusion ratchets toward a new set of mysteries." - Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
Cassandra Clare made her fiction debut with The Mortal Instruments series, which has been on many bestseller lists. Cassandra lives in an old Victorian house in western Massachusetts with her fiancÉ, their cats, and lots and lots of books. Visit her website at CassandraClare.com. Learn more about The Mortal Instruments series at MortalInstruments.com. Learn about her new trilogy The Infernal Devices at TheInfernalDevices.com.
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The book made me laugh from the very beginning when reading about Magnus’ adventures in Peru. I enjoyed finding out more about the signing of the Accords, and seeing characters from the two series in a different context; the Herondale family feature heavily, plus Camille Belcourt and a young Charlotte Fairchild.
I loved the gothic feel of The Midnight Heir, and the Miss Havisham-like character of Tatiana, alone in a decaying mansion with her young ward. It’s much darker than most of the other tales, but it felt like the beginning of a story and not a complete story; I hope at some point we get to find out what kind of black magic Tatiana was trying to do, and what exactly was wrong with James Herondale! My other favourites were Saving Raphael Santiago, The Last Stand of the New York Institute and, of course, The Course of True Love (and First Dates).
I really like the way that Clare writes LGBT characters – not as an afterthought or a token gesture, but as rounded characters who express their sexuality but are not defined by it. It’s so refreshing to find a book with a main character who is openly bisexual, but without his sexuality being portrayed as a big deal or as the most interesting thing about him. The way he talks about his attraction to men and women feels so natural and relaxed.
Looking forward to reading Lady Midnight now!
"Love and lies can corrupt even the purest heart..."
I've enjoyed my share of fantasy worlds, but very few are as potent and powerful as Cassandra Clare's. With The Mortal Instruments series I was awed, with The Infernal Devices, I am in complete shock with how confidently Clare creates and how high she keeps the quality.
It's utterly bewitching.
Clockwork Prince follows on smashingly from Clockwork Angel, and is a suspenseful sequel full of mystery and magic right from the get-go.
Synopsis (Not a copy from the book, but I always keep my interpretations close.)
Tessa Gray and the shadowhunters of London search tirelessly for the evil Magister before he can destroy them, but their enemy has vanished.
With him go the secrets to Tessa's past.
Intent on the truth, our cast throw themselves down dark paths, ready and willing to fight the creatures that dwell there.
But as emotions and histories arise to cloud their judgement, enemies descend.
And they descend from within...
Plot - 4.5/5 Stars
We've already established that the series' world is supernaturally awesome, and the author instantly drives that home from beginning to end. I would've liked a little more recap near the beginning, some more tidbits to help jog those memories from the first book, but overall, Clare does a fantastic job of pulling together the many, many threads and giving them meaning.
The overhanging 'big plots' demand answers: Tessa's origin; Mortmain's whereabouts and dastardly plans; Jem's illness; the threat of traitors; the will-they-won't-they romance (not usually so keen on heavy romance, and Clockwork Prince definitely has a sharp focus on it, but there's also a healthy dose of the fantastical to keep it balanced). The amount of story is just amazing, and all of it resolutely riveting.
While not as urgent as its predecessor, this entry to the series does manage to pull together some tragic and massive events, and the good spattering of adrenaline-infused action is glorious. The twist with Jessamine as the traitor is sadly not surprising. The blurb on the back of the book hints at a betrayer, and instead of secrecy, Clare all but puts a neon sign above Jessamine's head.
We're also treated to an almost joyous ending that I did not expect. There are obviously surprises to darken the light, but it's full of happiness. The author ensures it won't last though; there are so many things hanging precariously over the edge of a cliff that it's insane to even think about happiness.
Personally, while I do love the ending to Clockwork Prince, as a bridge between the first and last entries of the trilogy, it isn't as action-packed or engaging as I hoped it'd be.
Pace - 4/5 Stars
Overall, there's so much going on that it's a bloody pleasure to adventure through this novel. The progression of the plot is solid; the characters and their developments are gold; and the writing is smooth and makes for wonderful reading.
For me, though, there can sometimes be too much of a spotlight on the love triangle consisting of Tessa, Jem and Will. If it weren't for the phenomenal overall experience and the way everything fits together perfectly, I'd have hated the focus on romance. Scenes can also meander a little sometimes.
Characters - 4.5/5 Stars
The cast are as infectious and distinctive as the first novel built them to be. The varying personalities and flavours of humour hit the mark, and the camaraderie is unflinching. Clockwork Prince spends a lot of its time working through our characters' pasts, expanding them and giving us clearer motives and insights. The balance with the plot is stellar.
Perhaps the biggest part to this entry is the love triangle. Yep, we have a tumultuous and terribly risky romance on several different fronts. You know how I feel about heavy, lovey-dovey romance, but there are instances where I'm guilty of being a big softy, and this is one. Credit mostly goes to the three involved (and of course the author): Tessa, Jem and Will.
Tessa didn't sit perfectly with me in Clockwork Angel, there's just something missing. I can't put my finger on exactly what it is in Clockwork Prince that pulls her together, but she finally fits. Her stoicism and bravery are awe-inspiring, and the love she holds for both Jem and Will is natural and understandable. Clare gets it exactly right. Instead of coming across as sly and greedy, you really feel Tessa's confusion.
Along with her love interests, all three are hugely likable, to the point that you don't want to see any of them hurt, be that physically or emotionally.
The rest of the cast also worm their way into your heart, with the exception of poor Jessamine. Her plot, while solid, doesn't strike in the way it could have if there'd been more surprise to her intentions.
Writing - 5/5 Stars
Hauntingly beautiful. I adore Clare's style and structure.
Overall - 4.5/5 Stars
Doesn't quite reach its predecessor's height, but Clockwork Prince is a damn fine novel that comes mighty close.