Not so long ago I wrote my review for Clockwork Angel and with that talked all about my first impressions of The Infernal Devices, this well-loved series people talk about still so much. Today, I present to you the rest of my thoughts about this prequel to TMI in form of a double review since I flew through the second book and picked up the third one right after that. Now, I can at least say that I have read TDI for the first time during my time in quarantine. If that’s not an accomplishment I don’t know what is…
Note: This review may contain major spoilers for both of the books! Read on at your own risk.
book 2 of The Infernal Devices series
published December 6th 2011
genre: fantasy, ya, romance, paranormal
clockwork prince on goodreads ✧
my rating: ★★★★
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, but 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.
book 3 of The Infernal Devices series
published September 5th 2013
genre: fantasy, ya, romance, paranormal
clockwork princess on goodreads ✧
my rating: ★★★.5
Danger and betrayal, love and loss, secrets and enchantment are woven together in the breathtaking finale to the #1 New York Times bestselling Infernal Devices Trilogy, prequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series.
THE INFERNAL DEVICES WILL NEVER STOP COMING
A net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. Mortmain plans to use his Infernal Devices, an army of pitiless automatons, to destroy the Shadowhunters. He needs only one last item to complete his plan: he needs Tessa Gray.
Charlotte Branwell, head of the London Institute, is desperate to find Mortmain before he strikes. But when Mortmain abducts Tessa, the boys who lay equal claim to her heart, Jem and Will, will do anything to save her. For though Tessa and Jem are now engaged, Will is as much in love with her as ever.
As those who love Tessa rally to rescue her from Mortmain’s clutches, Tessa realizes that the only person who can save her is herself. But can a single girl, even one who can command the power of angels, face down an entire army?
Danger and betrayal, secrets and enchantment, and the tangled threads of love and loss intertwine as the Shadowhunters are pushed to the very brink of destruction in the breathtaking conclusion to the Infernal Devices trilogy.
Before going much into details I want to say it right off the bat; While I thought Clockwork Angel to be enjoyable (mentioned in my review on it) I couldn’t really understand the love and hype for it. Now, after finishing the whole series it does make sense though but only in this wider context. Personally, I believe that out of these three books Clockwork Prince was the best and that although I worried a lot about it since it is a sequel and I think that everyone has had not so good experineces with sequels before. But this one was definitely the peak of the series and Clockwork Princess, well, I’ll talk about it in a moment.
“You endure what is unbearable, and you bear it. That is all.”
As for the characters; I definitely see some kind of character development in Book #2 and #3 of this series especially when it comes to Will. Finally, there’s understanding and logic in his (past) behaviour and everything makes sense now. Jem is still the incarnation of innocence and goodness. And, Tessa? I read three books with her as a main characters now and I still do not really care for her with the same feeling as I do for other characters, side characters even. Yes, she does change but I do not believe that Tessa goes through any kind of mental development. Compared to other female main characters from fantasy books Tessa is a flat and dull main character. I liked how the Lightwoods played a bigger role in both book #2 and #3 and how Charlotte and Henry also became more honest and open with each other in their relationship. And, Magnus!! I definitely see why there’s a book only about him now and I am really tempted to pick it up and find out more about his character. He deserves more than just being a side character in someone else’s story.
“You hear that, James Carstairs? We are bound, you and I, over the divide of death, down through whatever generations may come. Forever.”
Can we just talk about how much I love the friendship, the bromance and the genuine care Jem and Will have for each other?! Both of them made me sob at the end of Clockwork Princess and I still haven’t recovered from that.
Plotwise, Clockwork Prince is a bit more slow-paced compared to book #1 but I think that is totally fine because it gives certain characters time to develop and share their backstories which was really interesting and much needed, in my opinion. Of course the final book in this series provided us with some kind of final battle scene against Mortmain. I know that these main characters have gone through a lot of things but still, I thought that this big important final battle somehow went a bit too fast (?). Furthermore, I am really disappointed in how things turned out for Jem in the end and it wasn’t quite what I was expecting. Still, the epilogue totally destroyed me and I believe that once you are attached to certain characters it’s really cry-worthy indeed. Again, I have to emphasize that I am not happy with how Cassandra Clare “solved” the love triangle.
And, the humour! The humour is still there in book #2. Here’s perfect proof for that;
“Ah,” said a voice from the doorway, “having your annual ‘everyone thinks Will is a lunatic’ meeting, are you?
“It’s biannual,” said Jem. “And no, this is not that meeting.”
But in Clockwork Princess it somehow just leaves?? I can’t even find a funny quote from book #3 to display here because it wouldn’t be as good as those you find in the first two books which probably has to do something with the fact that this one is an emotional roller coaster for Will aka the humour-driving force in the whole series.
All in all, I am really happy to have read TID. Reading it was like going back in time when “paranormal” as a subgenre had its peak. So, in that sense it was kind of refreshing in a nostalgic way.
“At last, the wheel comes full circle.”
So, what now? To be honest, I don’t know if I’ll ever read TMI, mainly because it’s been so long since I’ve invested my time into a book series with more than three books. The thought just intimidates me at the moment, haha. On the other hand continuing with a different Shadowhunters series than TMI would just mean pure chaos plotwise, wouldn’t it? And, while I do see a lot of people picking up Chain of Gold and enjoying it I can just not imagine doing that right now because I’m not such a big “series-following-the-next-generation” fan. Whatever happens, I’ll let you guys know but for now I guess I’ll leave the Shadowhunters world for a while.
Have you read TDI, and if that’s the case when did you first read it? What is your favourite book from this series? And your favourite character? Feel free to let me know and chat.