Monday, September 20, 2010

Review: Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Book Description:

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: Jem, 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.

Source: Personal Copy

My Thoughts:

After the death of her aunt Harriet, all Tessa wants is to be with her brother again. She sets out for London and discovers the biggest shock of her life. Her brother is not waiting for her at the pier. The worse thing is she has to follow the orders of the Dark Sisters to keep him alive. Tessa has so many questions about herself, the Dark Sisters, her brother and the strange Shadow world – the world that she should belong to.

Clare has done it again. Downworld London was beautifully created. It had a foreign feeling to it but at the same time I felt comfortable with the place enough to remember the landmarks. The attention to detail in terms of the clothing, the culture and the time was unmistakably remarkable and thorough. The only comment I have is that the book was written in American English instead of British English. Although this might seem applicable since the focus of the story is Tessa, it did not seem to apply for the English characters.

Tessa is loving and above all trusting. However, would these attributes keep her safe in the Shadow world? As she stayed in the Institute, she came to know about the orphans who live there, as well as their lives and what ties them to the Institute – their new home. Fascination kindles curiosity and soon Tessa found herself striving to understand two best friends. Will has this attractive mysteriousness that is very hard to ignore. Seemingly amused at all times and unserious about almost everything, his too casual behavior ignites questions in Tessa and at the same time draws her in. Jem, on the other hand is his opposite, gentle and considerate. Underneath his fragile condition is a dark secret. The characters are thoroughly developed. I found myself coming to love them.

I honestly do not know why up to now, I am still surprised at the sneaky ways of Cassandra Clare, even after having read the Mortal Instruments. She never fails to make readers believe in the story, only to reveal that there is so much more underneath what is seen. This is a read that should not be passed up by her fans and even readers who desire unpredictability.

Clockwork Angel is amazingly crafted and addictive. A mysterious, thrilling and satisfying read.



  1. I am really going to read this. I have not read any Cassandra Claire. Can this be a good book to try first?