Publisher: Walker Books
Released: December 6th 2011
My Rating: 5 stars out of 5
Find it on Goodreads
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. (from Goodreads)
I don’t know if it’s possible to describe how much I loved Clockwork Prince without it sounding like a bunch of rambling, gushing gibberish, but I’ll try. So here goes.
Everything about Clockwork Prince was amazing. Everything. I’m normally quite a critical reviewer. Whenever I read a book, there is always usually something I think that could have been better, or improved upon. With Clockwork Prince, I have literally racked my brains to find some kind of fault with it, and there just isn’t any. I loved it. The characters, the writing, the mystery – every single thing! I don’t even know where to start to try and explain all of this. I guess I’ll go with characters. The characters in this book...brilliant. Tessa was possibly one of the best heroines I have ever come across. She was so likeable and so strong and funny and fierce that, unlike with most heroines, I didn’t even question why both Will and Jem liked her so much. I can see why they did. She wasn’t perfect by any means, but she was definitely an intriguing girl. The love triangle didn’t seem contrived or just there as some plot to device to make things less boring – it seemed realistic, possible, and like it could genuinely happen. I could definitely see these two boys fall for this girl. I could see why she would like them both back! This love triangle, I have agonised over it, I tell you. AGONISED. It’s actually killing me. When Tessa was with Jem, I could understand just why she would want to be. But then I felt so bad for Will – Will who had no idea what was going on and who loved Tessa as well, though he tried so hard not to. And when she was with Will, I could also understand her feelings then (and she never seemed like one of those dithering back and forth girls, surprisingly – I enjoyed all her scenes [trust me, there are some awesome ones], whether with Will or Jem or alone, thinking about Will or Jem). But then I would feel sorry for Jem, kind Jem who was happy with just the possibility that Tessa might like him back. I mean, I do kind of favour Will over Jem, but to choose one of them over the other, it just can’t be done! Whatever Tessa does, she’d end up hurting someone, I just don’t see how this could ever work out. I don’t envy her, I’ll tell you that. As much as I’d like a Will or Jem of my own, I don’t know how I’d survive, being Tessa.
Jem was a character we got to know a lot better in Clockwork Prince. It was so fascinating, finding out about his flaws and his fears and his desires. I liked him even more in this book, and discovering his feelings and secrets made me feel like I really understood him better. As he and Tessa grew closer, I felt like I grew closer to him too. I loved every moment he had with Tessa – and with Will – each time, we got to see another little bit of him. He was so different to Will, and yet there was this deep connection between the two that no-one could ever really explain. Though we did get greater insight into Will and Jem’s relationship, and how much they’d be willing to sacrifice for each other, parabatai will always remain curious things, I think.
Speaking of sacrifice. Will. I just...ah. Whenever I write a review, I handwrite notes about the book as I’m reading it. And in my notebook, in the middle of the page in huge writing, are the words “poor Will”. Underlined three times. Because I think “poor Will” is how I felt throughout most of the book. We finally find out the dark secret he had been hiding, and wow. That poor boy, I can’t even begin to describe the horrible things he went through. Nothing ever went right for him. Whenever some good happened, some bad came along to wash it all away. By the end, I was almost in tears. He finally gained a glimmer of hope just to be knocked back down again. I don’t know how he lived as he had all that time. I don’t even know how to properly describe his situation. Dire, I guess. Unfair. Undeserved. And though I’ve always assumed it was Jem who understood Will the best, I think in Clockwork Prince, this shifted a little to Magnus. Magnus, as I’ve mentioned before, is my favourite character (so I was mega happy he was in the novel a lot). And in this book, he and Will developed this weird sort of familial relationship I can’t really describe. All I know is that I loved their scenes together. We got to see a different side of Will – and of Magnus – and I think the two grew closer than either of them imagined. Magnus certainly was surprised at home much he came to care for Will, and I think he was one of the only people in the book that could possibly understand his pain. That being said, it wasn’t all doom and gloom for Will. I’m making it sound like he acted all depressed all the time, but that’s not it – his internal thoughts could be pretty damn hilarious at times, and of course, he still retained his wit and charm.
A character that really surprised me was Gideon Lightwood. I seriously did not expect to like him so much! And of course, Sophie (the best maidservant ever, in my opinion), Charlotte and Henry were being their usual awesome selves too. Henry – that man spent more time in his head than in the real world! But he was very sweet, and adorable when with Charlotte. They had a little side-story of their own which I thought was so cute :).
One thing I found in Clockwork Prince was that you could never guess what was going to happen. The plot was so twisty-turny – you could go from a discovery of a huge secret, to action, to searching for someone, to kissing, to action – I had no idea what to expect when I turned the page, and I loved that about it! One of the main reasons I prefer The Infernal Devices series to The Mortal Instruments is that I think there is much more mystery to the plot. It’s pretty damn clever – I still don’t know what Mortmain wants with Tessa, I don’t know how things will turn out, can’t even hazard a guess. Especially after the cliffhanger at the end of this one – what was that?! Didn’t expect it at all. Can’t even guess what it means. Already dying for Clockwork Princess and Clockwork Prince hasn’t even been released yet.
Overall, Clockwork Prince was a brilliant read. Every person needs a copy of this book. And if you haven’t read Clockwork Angel yet, well, then get on that. Honestly, I’m not even exaggerating, this series is just THAT good. Cassie Clare is some kind of evil genius mastermind. So read this book. It comes with my highest recommendation.