A review on Cassie Clare’s “Clockwork Princess”

Book: Clockwork Princess (Book #3 of the Infernal Devices trilogy)

Author: Cassandra Clare

Published: March 19th, 2013

Synopsis: Tessa Gray should be happy – aren’t all brides happy? Yet as she prepares for her wedding, a net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. A new demon appears, one linked by blood and secrecy to Mortmain, the man who plans to use his army of pitiless automatons, the Infernal Devices, to destroy the Shadowhunters. Mortmain needs only one last item to complete his plan. He needs Tessa. And Jem and Will, the boys who lay equal claim to Tessa’s heart, will do anything to save her. (Goodreads)

Wow! I literally just finished this book. I almost cried in public at the cafe in Barnes and Noble (yes, I’m here again.) Livin’ it up on a Saturday night.

To make this more organized and easier for me, I’m going to review this book based on each character, one at a time. Some paragraphs will be much more extensive than others.

Mrs. Charlotte Branwell: She is a great character, and Cassie Clare has done a really amazing job keeping her a constant figure at the Institution. I mean, she never changes, but it makes sense because when I read Charlotte, I see her as already having reached maturity. She acts as a base for the Shadowhunters living at the Institute, and I applaud Clare’s character development with Charlotte.

Mr. Henry Branwell: Oh. My. Gosh. Henry, you gave me quite a fright back there, my man. I really thought you died. Don’t do that to me again. Seriously, I was soooo scared! Charlotte was pregnant, and the world was turning to chaos all around her, and Henry couldn’t die! No! He kept Charlotte sane! But then he didn’t die (breath of relief), and I was happy again. Cassie Clare really hiked the violence factor up a notch. I mean, Henry’s back was snapped and a Silent Brother’s throat was ripped out. Ripped out. I really loved the gore. It was just enough.

Miss/Mrs. Sophie: One of the problems I had with this novel was that everyone fell in love with everyone. Like, is that realistic? It’s cute, but is it entirely necessary? All I care about honestly is Will, Jem, and Tessa. I mean, I get it. The girls love the romance, and Mrs. Clare, you are a beautiful writer of romance scenes, but really? They all have a happy ending? That just doesn’t happen. But that’s what books are for, right? To fulfill the wishes of their readers. Sophie, yay, marriage, shadow hunter, AH. That’s all I have to say about Sophie.

Gideon/Gabriel Lightwood: I’m going to review the Lightwood brothers as a whole because they are pretty similar. I loved Gabriel’s change of heart. That was a good plot development. Gideon is uninteresting at best, but also chivalrous and that’s all that matters anyway, right? The Gabriel/Cecily romance seemed a bit forced but I suppose it was still fun to read. However, I hardly render it necessary. See? Cassie Clare has me talking like I’m from Victorian England. By the Angel….

Magnus Banes: Magnus was/is amazing. His tender side shined through in this novel, sometimes even more so than it does when he is around Alec.

Mortmain: You’re an asshole.

Ms. Black: Go away you masochistic witch.

The Automatons: These things actually gave me the shivers. They were so creepy! I felt at times like I was reading a Stephen King novel. Clare really did do an amazing job with her imagery in this novel.

Jem Carstairs: So sad. He died. Or did he? I didn’t see that coming. I really didn’t, until I skipped ahead to peek a bit at the last few pages of the book. It’s a habit I have tried to break, but to no avail. I shouldn’t have, I realize. Regardless, it was a pleasant surprise. It still made me sad though, for Will, not so much for Tessa because I knew she had Will (whom I prefer). Jem has always been a very stable character to me, which says a lot for how Will must rely on him. When he “died,” the book did seem to lose some stability, which I think was meant to happen. When a reader enters the confines of a book, he/she is meant to experience alongside the characters. At least, all good books follow these guidelines. I don’t have much to say about Jem, except for the fact that I think he is pansy (currently preparing for the onslaught of opposing opinion), but I am glad he and Tessa ended up together in the end. Yet again, UNREALISTIC HAPPY ENDING. Seriously though, I do like Jem. He just isn’t my favorite.

Tessa Gray: You are a beautiful human being. The scene in the cavern when she turns into the angel was absolutely stunning, and I’m glad Cassie added in the followup sickness because there is no way Tessa could have walked away from that unscathed. Way to be realistic, Clare. Her character development is truly beautiful. From a timid, frail girl to a strong, independent woman. I hope to see more of her in TMI; however, apparently Clare is trying to steer clear of mixing the series in any way (I have heard that she had a minor appearance in City of Glass).

William Herondale: I save this beautiful being for last because I LOVE HIM WITH ALL MY HEART AND SOUL. He is, actually, my favorite hero from ANY young adult novel/series, which says a lot because I’ve read numerous. I have a soft spot for boys who refrain from love, romance or relationships because of the mere reason it could potentially cause pain. There is an epic journey these characters take in which they eventually find love. I LOVE TO READ THIS JOURNEY. When I write books, I always have a character that takes this quest. All heroes take a journey, but these types of heroes are my absolute favorite. Thus, Will is gold. He avoids feeling anything for anyone because he doesn’t want to hurt them or be hurt in return, but enter a young Tessa Grey and you’ve got complication. Beautiful, beautiful complication. I am a Will/Tess shipper (aka encourager), and will be to the end of my days. Will was beautiful in this novel, and when Tessa tells the reader of his death I openly cried (teared up; same thing). The scene where he was gallantly riding to rescue Tessa reminded me of old tales of heroes and damsels in distress, which totally fit because he and Tessa read all the time. It was a great scene and even though some people (cough feminists cough) don’t agree with the “damsel in distress” theme, I still found it romantically profound. Speaking of romantically profound, THE SEX SCENE YES! This is the first sex scene I’ve ever read in a YA novel where I actually loved the characters (excluding Twilight; that doesn’t count). You know how long I have waited for this? Forever. I thank you, Mrs. Clare. I’m not a voyeur, ok? I just enjoy reading about sex. Wait.

I’d love more novels about these characters. Maybe a book about the birth of Shadowhunters, hmmm? Maybe, Clare? Possibly? I’d love to read a book based around the first of his kind, Jonathan Shadowhunter. I’d also love a illustration depicting for me the Shadowhunter family tree, because JESUS, I am so confused. I don’t know who is related to who, who is married to who, and who is kin/children to whom. But first, CAN ANYONE PLEASE EXPLAIN TO ME THE RULES OF WHO/WHOM?


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