Release: 19th March 2013
Genre: Steampunk, Paranormal Romance, Historical Fiction, Young Adult
Rating: 5/5 stars
"Tessa Gray should be happy - aren't all brides happy? Yet as she prepares for her wedding, a net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. A new demon appears, one linked by blood and secrecy to Mortmain, the man who plans to use his army of pitiless automatons, the Infernal Devices, to destroy the Shadowhunters. Mortmain needs only one last item to complete his plan. He needs Tessa. And Jem and Will, the boys who lay equal claim to Tessa's heart, will do anything to save her."
This is the third and final book in The Infernal Devices trilogy and WILL contain spoilers not only from the first two books but Clockwork Princess itself. I usually don’t write spoiler reviews but could not review this book any other way and I found it therapeutic to get my feelings on what happened out there. In short Clockwork Princess was INCREDIBLE go read it and then come back and discuss, okay?
"“You know that feeling,” she said, “when you are reading a book, and you know that it is going to be a tragedy; you can feel the cold and darkness coming, see the net drawing tight around the characters who live and breathe on the pages. But you are tied to the story as if being dragged behind a carriage and you cannot let go or turn the course aside.”" ― Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Princess
A lot of people rave about The Mortal Instruments series and whilst I do enjoy those books The Infernal Devices is one of my favourite series of all time and so I was anxious and excited for Clockwork Princess and was literally counting down the days on my calendar for this final instalment. I raced through this 568 page monster in less than 48 hours and by the end my eyes actually hurt from all of the tears I had shed. Happy tears, sad tears and tears of pure grief over this series ending.
On Plot, Mortmain, and Links to The Mortal Instruments:-
Clockwork Princess is one of Cassie’s more slower paced novels plot wise. Instead of lots of action and fight scenes the book is very emotionally driven and the focus is mostly on saying a final farewell to these beloved characters. I kind of wished the take down of Mortmain was longer, all of these books were building up to this twisted villain who in the end got snuffed out like a bug. However I was really happy that Tessa was the one to kill Mortmain it was so ironic and felt so right. When Tessa changed into her Angel I literally gasped, I didn’t see that one coming at all and although I was expecting a bigger final battle it was a fitting end to Mortmain.
One of the things I love about this series is the foreshadowing Cassandra Clare does for The Mortal Instruments. In this book we find out that Henry and Magnus actually created the portals which I loved. We also find out how Church ends up in New York and Magnus’s comment on all Lightwood’s looking the same had me in stitches! One thing I did pick up on that I haven’t seen anybody else comment on was how Clary’s middle name is Adele. Clary and Adele (Tessa’s mother) were both Shadowhunters who were brought up as Mundanes and I wonder if Cassandra Clare intended to give us a clue to the Adele story-line by the use of that name. Its little details like this that I absolutely love about the books set in this world. Cassandra Clare’s world building is so rich and detailed.
On Characters, Relationships and Teams:-
It was so hard saying goodbye to the characters in this book; I love all of them so dearly! Charlotte was such a bad ass and I absolutely loved her strength. Henry was adorable and I loved his friendship with Magnus in this book – finally somebody who gets his genius! Sophie and Bridget were courageous and loyal and Cecily was a wonderful new character who reminded me so much of Isabelle! I loved Will and Cecily’s relationship and how protective Will was of his little sister. I also grew to really love the Lightwood brothers in this book as they struggle between family loyalty and doing the right thing. I was so pleased with who everyone ended up with and that everybody got a happy ending – hurray to not killing anybody off! I’m really going to miss this family of the London Institute.
“Most people are lucky enough to have even one great love in their life. You have found two.” ― Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Princess
What blew me away about Clockwork Princess and what made this book so phenomenal in my opinion was the complexity of our trio’s relationship. Will and Jem are like two halves of a whole – literal soul mates. Their relationship was really well explored and described to us in this book and I consider their friendship up there with the greats like Harry, Ron and Hermione and Frodo and Sam. Cassandra Clare made me feel and understand their relationship and what it means to be Parabatai. To my surprise Jem and Will’s relationship became the most important relationship to me in this series. Their heart to hearts was the source of most of my tears over Clockwork Princess.
On THAT Epilogue:-
“They say you cannot love two people equally at once,” she said. “And perhaps for others that is so. But you and Will—you are not like two ordinary people, two people who might have been jealous of each other, or who would have imagined my love for one of them diminished by my love of the other. You merged your souls when you were both children. I could not have loved Will so much if I had not loved you as well. And I could not love you as I do if I had not loved Will as I did.” ― Cassandra Clare, Clockwork PrincessI know that the epilogue is causing a lot of conflict between the fandom especially for Will fans but you know what guys? No one would be happier with that epilogue than Will. It’s that simple. I personally LOVED the epilogue. I LOVED that both boys got to be happy with Tessa in their lifetimes. There is NO WAY that Will would want Tessa to live out eternity a lonely, grieving, widow and he would be so happy that Jem and Tessa had each other. And I’m sorry but if you think otherwise do you really know Will Herondale at all!? Have we even been reading about the same character!? I can seriously imagine him doing a little jig and singing a song about it up in Shadowhunter heaven. I, unlike a lot of readers, didn’t feel like either love belittled the other but instead created something special, something greater. I think that Tessa, Will and Jem’s circumstance is a unique one that required a unique ending I don’t think a lot of authors could have pulled that epilogue off but for this story it worked beautifully.
Overall Clockwork Princess was a phenomenal if bittersweet ending. I usually hate love triangles but Cassandra Clare has created the ultimate triangle in The Infernal Devices one of respect, love and loyalty that runs from angle to angle between all three characters. I’m now going through a mourning period over the end of what has become one all my all-time favourite series. Clockwork Princess was a masterpiece of a conclusion and The Infernal Devices will always hold a special place in my heart.
“Every meeting led to a parting, and so it would, as long as life was mortal. In every meeting there was some of the sorrow of parting, but in everything parting there was some of the joy of meeting as well.” ― Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Princess