CLOCKWORK ANGEL (The Infernal Devices #1) By Cassandra Clare [Review]

clockwork angel the infernal devices book cover

I’ll come right out and say it, I decided to read Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare because of the book cover. I know we say not to judge a book by its cover, but I couldn’t resist, this book cover is so beautiful, it was calling out to me. But of course that’s only part of the story, now that the book had captured my attention, was it able to live up to its cover? Well, let’s find out.

At the time of reading the book I didn’t know this, but Clockwork Angel is part of The Infernal Devices series, which is a prequel to Cassandra Clare’s other series The Mortal Instruments, which I haven’t read. So I came into this book totally open to experience this new universe.

Clockwork Angel takes place in Victorian England and tells the story of Tessa Gray, a sixteen-year-old girl, who after arriving to London to join her brother, gets kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters and thrown into a whole new world Downworlders, full of vampires, warlocks and other supernatural being. While with the Dark Sisters Tessa discovers that she herself has a rare ability: the power to transform into another person, even if they are dead, as long as she has some sort of object that belonged to them.

She soon gets rescued and adopted by a demon-fighting group known as the Shadowhunters. There she will discover more about this brand new world and how they relate to her powers and family, while she tries to find her brother. In addition, Tessa also find herself getting closer to two Shadowhunters. They are Will, a smart mouth seventeen-year-old, who seems to have lots of vices, but even more secrets, and his best friend (and probably only person he cares about) Jem, also seventeen-year-old, whom we soon find is more fragile than he seems.

I enjoyed Clockwork Angel and I especially found the setting in London during the Queen Victoria reign refreshing. The whole world was intriguing and I liked the idea of Shadowhunters.

However, I did find the story moved along a little slow for me. It seemed that with 479 pages, a lot more could have happened and I was expecting more action and more development surrounding the love story. Some parts felt like they were dragging along and could have been skipped because they just repeated previous parts I had already read.

In addition, Clockwork Angel sets up the relationship between Tessa and Jem and Will, but it never seems to fully reach what it sets up to be. In fact, if you’re hoping to get a lot of romance, think again, that is not the focus of the story. This was a bit disappointing because I was expecting more based on earlier parts in the book.

As far as character goes, I will admit to being irritated by Tessa. And while I loved the time setting of the story, as I mentioned previously, I unfortunately felt that the character of Tessa suffered because of it. Instead of being a strong female protagonist, she felt a little weak to me and depending on men to protect her too much, when she doesn’t really need to. I wish the character had evolved a little more and became tougher.

That said, I did enjoy the characters of Will and Jem immensely. Both of them so different, yet so fascinating. You’ll love them and I can’t wait to find out more about them in the next book.

Overall, Clockwork Angel was a very enjoyable read and even though I had some issues with it, it’s still a great supernatural series to pick up. I for one am looking forward to book 2 of The Infernal Devices entitled Clockwork Prince, which will be released in September 2011.

If you have read the book, let me know what you thought in the comments. Did you enjoy the book? Did you have the same issues I did with the story? Did you like Will and Jem as much as I did?

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars | Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry | Pages: 479 | Source: Purchased | Buy on Amazon

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