Clockwork Angel-- Cassandra Clare

Release Date: August 31st, 2010
Genre:  Paranormal [Romance]
Publisher: Margaret K McElderry
Pages: 476
Amazon Link*: Click Here
Goodreads Page: Click here
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: James, 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
Blurb: Even though there are some things about Clare's writing and characters that bug me, it's not a bad story.

Review: I've never been a superbig fan of Cassandra Clare, but I read her books so that I can stay on top of the hot books. After reading this book, I'm still not a superbig fan of Cassandra Clare. Do I like her books? Sure, they're fine. But I do have a few serious issues with them.

For one, her writing is VERY difficult for me to read. One of the things people always seem to praise Clare about is how her words seem to flow and are easy to read. I guess I'm abnormal. I always find myself re-reading her sentences because the first time through they don't make ANY sense. Around page 75 (before the story picked up) I was about ready to drop the book just because it was taking me FOREVER to read.

Secondly (and this is the bigger issue), is her leading men. I'm going to be blunt here: I hate the type of boy that is arrogant, aloof, and abusive. Clare's main love interests (Jace & Will) always seem to fit this stereotype. My goodreads update on page 300 read:

"Story is VERY good now, but I have no idea what people see in either Jem OR Will. Especially Will. I think he's a scum bag."

Sure, the men always redeem themselves somehow and show their "soft side." But I just can't stand them. Luckily, that status update received a comment from the lovely author Zoe Marriott who said:

"I really feel I have to put my hand up and say that I don't find rude and demeaning (and sexist!) at all attractive. And I don't write heroes who are that way, despite *some* people telling me that my male characters aren't 'strong' or 'sexy' enough. You know what I find sexy? Kindness, a good sense of humour and someone who listens when I freaking talk. Hmmph."

Yup. I couldn't have said it better myself, Zoe.

HOWEVER, I will say that I did still very much enjoy the story. I will read the other books because I want to know what's going to happen IN TERMS OF PLOT. I couldn't care less about the love story.

So... this review kind of turned into a rant. As always, my rant is more directed at that TYPE of boy (which you can find in dozens of books) not specifically in Ms. Clare's characters. Not trying to be mean. Just felt like it had to be said.

All review content © Enna Isilee, Squeaky Books 2007-2011

*I am an amazon affiliate. If you purchase this book using my link, I will get a tiny fraction of the purchase, which goes toward contests.


  1. Amen. Why does the nice guy finish last in fiction too?

  2. While I disagree with your opinions, you have a right to them.

    My thoughts after reading your review were of books where the heroin is a man bashing jerk. I could name quite a few. The other side of the coin. I think the growth in the character is what's more important than how they begin. Both Jace and Will have their issues but I trust Cassie to fix some of those issues along the way. That's human nature. That's real.

    Thanks for the review. I know it's hard to go against the popular belief so kudos for that.

  3. Three cheers for authors who defy the convention of writing rude heroes! (I really liked Zoe Marriott for saying that on your review.)

    I liked Mortal Instruments just fine as a guilty-pleasure read, but I struggled through Clockwork Angel and have no interest in reading anything else Clare writes.

  4. StuckInBooks,

    THANK YOU for your respectful comment. It's refreshing to see someone who disagrees but doesn't want to claw out my eyes.

    I'm curious about which books you're referring to. I feel like that man-bashing doesn't happen much in YA fantasy. Is that more a contemp thing? Regardless, I don't like those books either, and there is a middle ground. There are SO MANY books where both the girl and the guy are nice people from the very beginning (Zoe Marriott's and Shannon Hale's books for example). Those are the books I strive for. I like to avoid jerks of all sexes. ;)

    And I do agree that Clare's characters (Jace at least) do seem to develop into much better men. But I know that if I ever met a guy who was as jerkish as Jace or Will in real life, then I probably wouldn't stick around to see if he became a nice guy. Well... I might stick around if he was the only one who could save me from vampires and werewolves. ;)

  5. LOL - thanks for quoting me, Enna! I should probably 'fess up, though, that I really love Cassandra Clare's books - and I'm a big fan of Jace. Not Will, so much. I'm rooting for team Jem!

  6. Ha! That's perfectly all right. I suppose I'm also team Jem (but I don't think he stands a chance). That's why I added that I was commenting on ALL characters of this type, not just Cassie's characters.


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