If you have not read the first novel: Clockwork Angel, this review may contain minor spoilers
In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when it becomes clear that the mysterious Magister will stop at nothing to use Tessa’s powers for his own dark ends.
With the help of the handsome, tortured Will and the devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister’s war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal and fueled by revenge. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister knows their every move—and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa is drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa answers about who she really is? As their search leads to deadly peril, Tessa learns that secrets and lies can corrupt even the purest heart.
Hello bookworms and welcome! Today, to start off this lovely week, the last week of October, I am coming to you with a review of the second book in the Infernal Devices trilogy by Cassandra Clare: Clockwork Prince.
Essentially, Clockwork Prince is an amalgamation is angst-y romance, fast-paced action, mystery, and FEELS that had my heart pounding constantly, swooning at all moments and even caused me to drop the book in shock at one point. Clockwork Prince was just as great, if not greater than it’s counterpart, the first novel: Clockwork Angel.
If you are still reading this right now, it means that you have indeed read Clockwork Angel (and possibly Clockwork Prince). If not, I would suggest turning back, in case of being spoiled for the series. Of course, I try my best to avoid as many spoilers as possible and speak as generally as possible. But we all know how hard it is NOT to talk about spoilers with a series that you love and adore. That’s how I feel about Clockwork Prince right now.
You know a book is good when you have almost 30 post-it tabs sticking out of the pages of the book. Yes bookworms, I ABSOLUTELY ADORED this sequel. Second book syndrome? Nope. Not with this book! If anything, Clockwork Prince was a step up from Clockwork Angel. There was an extremely huge amount of character development of Will (our beloved Will), who I am now infatuated with (side note: I used up all my Will-colour-coded-tabs, that’s how much I adored Will in this novel, guys). The action and mystery was enthralling and my heart was always pounding, my mind constantly whirring.
Characters are the most important part of a novel for me, and Cassandra Clare delivers exactly what I need right to the doorstep of my bookworm heart. The characters within Clockwork Prince are filled with immense depth and colour, each with their own quirks, experiences and values that shape them. The best part about this sequel is the character development they go through, specifically Will.
I was very unsure of Will after reading Clockwork Angel due to the fact that Will was so very detached and pulled himself from everyone, so much so that I as a reader felt detached from him. But despite this, I can never resist a brooding, sarcastic and handsome male character (all my book boyfriends fit into this category to some degree). Clockwork Prince gave me exactly what I needed from Will: a development into the nature of Will’s personality and the revelation of why he is the way he is. And damn, it’s an incredibly complex revelation. Finally, we discover why Will keeps everyone at arm’s length, and why he pushed Tessa away with such vehemence. Will has such complexity to his character – his past has led him to forge and mold a new identity and personality for himself, and yet, we catch glimpses of the “real Will” and honestly, I can’t get enough. I NEED MORE OF WILL HERONDALE IN MY LIFE PLEASE AND THANK YOU.
My love for Jem is an obvious one, if you have read my review of Clockwork Angel. Unlike my other previous book boyfriends, Jem is a kind, calm and thoughtful gentleman; not sarcastic, brooding or a bad-boy to any degree and in Clockwork Prince he is still the same swoon-worthy gentleman I love and adore. He goes through some development, significantly less than Will, however, we get to see more of Jem, of how he feels about himself and his circumstance behind that calm and collected demeanor.
Tessa struggles mostly with coming to terms with who she is. With the power she possesses and her confusion over whether she is a Downworlder or something else entirely, leads her to question her identity. In the whirlwind of confusion between the two men she is fond of the most, and the conflict between the Shadowhunters and Mortmain, Tessa’s biggest struggle is the identity crisis she is in. Is there really a Tessa Gray? Or is this appearance of herself simply what she created from her mind? More than anything, my heart went out to Tessa. With no family to look to for help and a crazy man bent on revenge of some sort after her and her power, I can’t imagine how hard it would be.
AH, THE ROMANCE. There is obviously a love triangle involved. NOW WAIT. Before you run away screaming, hear me out. This is the best love triangle you will ever come across. It filled my heart with joy and love, while simultaneously slowly ripping it to shreds. You’ll most likely be stuck in a whirlwind of: “I ship Wessa! Oh… wait no! I SHIP JESSA” and so on and so forth. Even now, after finishing this novel and after everything that has happened between these three, I’m still unsure of who I ultimately ship. And to me, that’s the sign of a successful love triangle. THANK YOU CASSANDRA CLARE, YOU’RE A CHAMPION.
The world-building, as I mentioned in my Clockwork Angel review, is superb. London in the 1800s is possibly now my favourite historical time period within fiction. Cassandra Clare does an amazing job of weaving in this world into the story, complete with the vivid imagery of the setting, the culture, the outfits that they wear; simply fabulous.
As always with what I’ve noticed about Cassandra Clare, she does an incredible job with the mystery within the plots of her books. There’s always something for the reader to be guessing about. There is always a question on the reader’s mind and I felt this way with Clockwork Prince despite the many revelations that were revealed. Not only that, it was fast-paced and the action was perfectly timed and spread out. Clare’s writing, as always, is marvelous and keeps me invested in the story long after I have stopped reading for the night.
Have you read Clockwork Prince?
Who do you ship? Wessa or Jessa?