I put off reading The Infernal Devices for a really long time. I love the world Cassandra Clare created, but I was worried I wouldn’t like the historical aspect of TID. To be quite frank, historical fiction doesn’t really interest me (I’m a work in progress!) and that’s exactly what I thought this trilogy would be. Well… I suppose historical fantasy fiction would be a more accurate way to describe what I thought Clockwork Angel would be. I was quite mistaken.
Clockwork Angel follows Tessa Gray and the Shadowhunters of the London Institute in the year 1878. I suppose, like Goodreads, I’d have to describe this as a prequel to The Mortal Instruments, but I am absolutely glad I read these after reading (and re-reading) the aforementioned series.
I’m definitely happy I read TMI before TID because I liked having the background to compare ancestries. For instance, I can’t imagine liking Will nearly as much as I did without knowing that his line would eventually bring us Jace. Nor could I imagine liking Emma if not for Jem. One of my immediate first impressions upon the introduction of William Herondale was “I can tell he is related to Jace!”
Additional first impressions – Tessa will become a favorite character in the world (spoiler alert: she does!) and Jem is the sweetest (another spoiler: he is!). What I found most interesting about Tessa is her love of books. It’s really nice to encounter characters who love books as much as you do!
Obviously, I loved Clockwork Angel. I thought it was a wonderful start to the trilogy. One of the key things I loved about this book is the simple fact that I already had Clockwork Prince ready to start the next day. Otherwise the cliffhanger ending would have killed me!
I’ve noted before that I adore Magnus Bane, so all of his appearances made me really happy. Of course, through my happiness there were some things that were spoiled for me because of The Mortal Instruments.
The most obvious is the strange relationship between Will and Tessa. We all know she chooses Will, but all signs in Clockwork Angel point to Jem and Tessa being the couple. Throughout this story, I was left wondering how on earth it was possible that she and Will ended up married when it’s clear James is in love with her, and she him.
Jem’s illness, in general, was confusing to me. Well… maybe not quite confusing. I knew he would eventually become Brother Zachariah, but I didn’t think an illness would lead to it. In fact, throughout TMI there wasn’t any indication that Brother Zachariah joined the Brotherhood because of an illness. I just accepted it as something that had to be done… like an order rather than a choice.
Moving on to bad guys. This one had a good one! It’s hard to be afraid of someone named Valentine, but someone who goes by the Magister is easy to be frightened of. The Magister was a great villain for this story.
Clockwork Angel was absolutely the breath of fresh air I needed to start this year with (although it was technically the third book I read in 2019). Clare’s writing revitalized my mind and welcomed me home to the Shadow world.
You tell me! Jem and Tessa or Tessa and Will? Why?