Thursday, May 10

Clockwork Prince: Book Review

Clockwork Prince
Cassandra Clare
Margaret K. McElderry Books
December 6th, 2011
Young Adult| Fantasy
 Nephilim | Demon | Warlock | Fae | Vampire | Werewolf

Official Blurb -
In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.

With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?
As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.

Much of this book was spent in character development, both individual and group. There is a sense that they are tied together and pain inflicted to one will poison the others. Will Herondale gains immense depth and easily steals the show. Jem Carstairs holds his ground and is still the reliable character. Tessa Gray takes a very foundational role in this book. Much weight is placed on her every move including the fragile heart of more than one person. Her path is full of mines and no matter where she moves she leaves carnage behind. She doesn't come across as whiny or indecisive, as other heroines in a similar situation have. But it does seem that her life is doomed to be blighted by bad timing and evil plots. She is the first character that I wish would remain aloof from men in order to save them from her destructive touch.
There is something calming in knowing that no matter what choice they make or action they take it will end badly. When you expect the worst and have no reason not to you are bound to be happy when things turn out better. They might as well pit their efforts against their own demise. The only other option is surrender and that outcome is certain. The villain is so omnipresent that he knows their every step and has plans to thwart every hypothetical attempt. Almost as if they are his puppets and their piddly attempts only amuse but do not cause concern.
I almost wish I had read this series before The Mortal Instruments. It is hard to stay grounded in this time period. Several of my favorite classics herald from this same time and have left me with expectations for those bound by its standards. It is wonderful to watch how the Nephilim function in this time but they feel so ahead of the times. Unlike in first series, where propriety wasn't in their vocabulary, this group at least knows the word but doesn't follow it.
This book really sets the scene and makes this a series to read. The characters really come to life. There isn't as much action in this book as I have come to expect from Cassandra's books but it is a wonderful addition to the family. Definitely pick this up, though if you are faint of heart, you might want to wait and see how it all works out before plunging yourself into the chaos.

Content:
Swearing: mild
Sexual: moderate
Violence: moderate
Main Character Ages: 16 and 17
Moments Divine:
"What d'you think I stay for? The ambiance?"
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"A demon pox on all your houses!"
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I must give silent homage to pages 464 - 474. You have built me up and then shattered me.
Dear Cassandra,

Not just any old love triangle will do for you, it seems. Are you on a search to find two men that are so equal it is impossible to choose between them? It feels as if this must be true. My heart weeps for this ill fated trio. Perhaps, you are akin to the Greek Gods who delight in playing with and tormenting mere mortals. Certainly, your power with words is great, wielding the power to breach any wall and draw forth all the tender emotions beyond. Much like a weaver, you use those emotions and spin a web that twines them with the characters and creates life. The ending of this book has left my heart in despair. I would beg to be released from your spell but I know, like an addict, I would come crawling back for more.

Sincerely,

Hopelessly Waiting on a Happy Ending

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