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Monday, April 4, 2011

Review: Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare

Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Published: August 31, 2010
Pages: 478
Source: Bought
Rating: 5 Stars - Super Crazy Awesome!

Magic is dangerous--but love is more dangerous still. 
When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos. 
Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.
Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by--and torn between--two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

In short: Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare is a superb introduction to The Infernal Devices Series and presents us with a whole new cast of extremely well developed and wonderful main and side characters.
I was admittedly a bit doubtful going into Clockwork Angel thinking that Cassandra Clare wasn't going to be able to set this one apart from her The Mortal Instruments Series. The characters sounded very familiar to the ones we see in TMI, for example. I know now that I should have known better. After all, my favourite part of TMI is the characters so I should have known that Clare was completely capable of creating a new batch of unique and loveable characters in The Infernal Devices.

Well, mostly loveable. Will is going to take some warming up to. Whereas Jace, though arrogant at times, openly shows affection to the people he loves, Will pushes everyone away from him but Jem. Also, Jace is never cruel, not like Will. And yet, I'm still incredibly intrigued as to what exactly is causing Will to behave in such a jerkish manner. I can't wait to learn more. Other than Will and his frustrating moments, I can't stress enough how much I loved the main and side characters of Clockwork Angel - each with their own well defined personalities, back stories, and mysteries.

And Magnus! 'Nuff said. Yeah, Magnus gets his own paragraph.

Something else that I loved that I would be remiss if I didn't mention is the setting: Victorian London. I would never have called myself a fan of historical fiction before this; I usually make every effort and excuse to avoid it. But Clockwork Angel may have made me a new fan! Clare really brings the setting alive with perfectly plotted and fascinating details, deftly recreating what Victorian London was like. As a historical fiction amateur, I never got lost or confused in facts or language. Really well done!

Overall, Clockwork Angel is a superb first book the The Infernal Devices Series and an amazing prequel to The Mortal Instruments Series. This was my first foray into the steampunk genre and I have to say, I enjoyed that aspect of the novel very much as well! The clockwork automatons were just insanely creepy. Oh, and if anyone asks, I'm Team Tessa :) Very much looking forward to Clockwork Prince coming out August 2011. (And City of Fallen Angels coming out tomorrow, of course!!).

Other Reviews:
The Unread Reader
Supernatural Snark
Unputdownable Books

Stalk the Author (not for serious):
Fansite - MortalInstruments.net
Fansite - Mundie Moms


  1. I'm glad you liked the book! I was a bit worried about Clare not being able to separate books too, but it turned out amazing. I can't wait to get CoFA tomorrow! xo

  2. I'm glad you liked it !! I look forward to read Clockwork Prince and learn some things about Will and Jem =)

  3. I can't wait for tomorrow!!! Although, I have to wait till payday to pick up my own copy. But still!!!

    Glad you enjoyed the book. I too have become a fan of the Steampunk genre. :0)

  4. Yay! I adored this one as well Aylee! I know there was a lot of criticism with this one where people said the characters were too similar to TMI, but I didn't mind at all. Though Will had the same sarcasm as Jace, he was different in all the ways you pointed out - a bit darker and a bit more troubled. Can't wait for the second book in the series!

  5. Ooh, can't wait to read this! I have it, and have to read it: especially after your review!
    Brilliant review!

    Oh, and you should so read Across the Universe; it's brilliant! (:

  6. Yay! I'm glad you liked it! I enjoyed it immensely and it was my first steam punk novel as well. I haven't read the TMI series yet. I'm a bit reluctant to do so. But we'll see how it goes! I'm looking forward to your other reviews!

  7. *happy tears*

    Aylee, you know I LOVED this one. I have yet to read TMI, but with CA as my intro to CC, I have to say I think her storytelling is amazing.

    Will was cruel at times, but he was mostly cruel to himself, I think. So beautifully broken, he is. *sighs* I'm so intrigued by him too and can't wait to find out more about what is hurting him so much.

    Team Tessa!

  8. Awesome review (:
    I want to read this book, but I just don't have the money for it atm :((

  9. I think I'm going to have to read this one now!

  10. Great review! I have this book on my Kindle but I've put off reading it because I still haven't caught up with The Mortal Instruments.

  11. l was quite bad and judged this by the cover, l just didn't think it would be for me at all but by the sound of it, from this review, l would love it!
    Thanks =)

  12. Hiya!
    Thanks for your comment on my Catching Fire review. The one good thing about being behind on series: no wait! Well, I'm lovin' it so far... I should be finished soon!

  13. I think I actually preferred CA over any of the TMI books. Crazy! But I felt it was easier for me to get wrapped up in this storyline. Great review! I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

  14. I was also worried originally that CA could never live up to the Mortal Instruments series. Good thing we worried for naught! Some of the characters were similar, but the story was completely different and very... steampunk-ish. And you can never go wrong with Magnus!! Great review. :)

  15. Great review, Aylee! I haven't read TMI yet - I plan to over the summer - but since this is a prequel, should I be reading this series first? I also haven't read any steampunk books so I have a feeling this will probably end up being the first one then.

  16. I'm so happy to hear that this lives up to the expectations of TMI fans. I am so looking forward to this book but also hesitant. This was one of those that I kept flipping through at bookstores and it never caught my interest. But that was before I developed a crush on Cassandra Clare after reading TMI, so maybe I'll like it more now.

  17. Okay...I seriously must read this book! It's been in my TBR way too long. I so like the Victorian Steampunk aspect. Fab review!

  18. Steph: It really was! I'm so impressed.

    Elodie: Yes, I'm dying to learn more about all the characters, but especially Will and Jem!

    Tracy: I'm sad that I probably won't be able to read CoFA for another little while now with everything going on at school.

    Jenny: Yes, I was impressed that she still managed to make them different, I thought. Some people may disagree with me though and think they weren't much different from the characters in TMI.

    TheBookAddictedGirl: You should!! I would recommend reading it before CoFA if possible.

    Naj: I can see why you might be a bit reluctant. The first TMI book wasn't absolutely amazing but each book in the trilogy is better than the one before it so I definitely recommend reading it!!

    Missie: So excited to hear hat you have to say about TMI! I hope you love it! Hmm, that's an interesting take on Will. I guess he was very hard on himself. I'm just dying to know what made him this way! I hope we get lots of answers in Clockwork Prince.

    The Book Pages: I would recommend getting it from the library if possible!

  19. Bookish Brunette: Do it!

    Jessica: Hmm, yes I would say read TMI Cycle 1 first, then Clockwork Angel, then CoFA.

    Jodie: I wasn't sure this would be for me either. The cover definitely screams histfic and that isn't really my thing but I'm glad I gave it a go!

    Stephanie: Interesting. I know I liked TDI Book One more than TMI Book One so there's a very good chance that I might end up liking this series more than her original one!

    Kat: Yes, I'm so relieved and so impressed. It was definitely a different story, different setting, different monsters. Oh, Magnus. I was so happy to see him in this. I love how he transverses generations and continents.

    Zanida: You can read this one first if you want but you don't have to. The fun thing about reading TMI first is that when you read Clockwork Angel, you get to recognize last names and ancestors to the characters you know and love from TMI. It's pretty neat.

    Logan: I definitely recommend checking it out. You like fast paced books and that is what you get with Clockwork Angel. Seriously non stop action! I really have a good feeling that you'll love it!

    Julie: It has been on my TBR since it came out last August. I'm so surprised it took me so long to get to it seeing as how much I loved TMI. I knew I had to read it before CoFA came out though :)

  20. This was also my first steampunk and I loved, loved, loved it! I'm a big fan of Magnus and Will even though he is a total jerk. I hope Clockwork Prince doesn't end with a cliffhanger though. I don't think I can handle another one of Cassie's cliffhangers. She is so evil!

    Chel @ The Procrastinator's Corner

  21. She is! I'm pretty sure she just enjoys torturing her readers.

  22. I really enjoyed this book :) I love your blog by the way! The title and your profile blurb made me laugh :) It's awesome!

  23. You think just like me on this. I'd also add that the female main character isn't as instantly grabbing as Clary in the City of Bones, but I can see that this is very much a set up book for a series.

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