Friday, March 11, 2011

We are but Dust and Shadows... "Clockwork Angel" {by Cassandra Clare" Book Review


Author: Cassandra Clare

# of Pages: 479

Year Published: 2010

Publisher: Simon and Shuster

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

In a time when Shadowhunters are barely winning the fight against the forces of darkness, one battle will change the course of history forever. Welcome to the Infernal Devices trilogy, a stunning and dangerous prequel to the New York Timesbestselling Mortal Instruments series.
The year is 1878. Tessa Gray descends into London’s dark supernatural underworld in search of her missing brother. She soon discovers that her only allies are the demon-slaying Shadowhunters—including Will and Jem, the mysterious boys she is attracted to. Soon they find themselves up against the Pandemonium Club, a secret organization of vampires, demons, warlocks, and humans. Equipped with a magical army of unstoppable clockwork creatures, the Club is out to rule the British Empire, and only Tessa and her allies can stop them...

Our Rating...

4.3 Stars

Clockwork Angel is book one in The Infernal Devices series. We gave it a rating of 4 stars. The steam punk genre set in the 1800s was appealing and the juxtaposition between technology and the Victorian society was interesting. What Clockwork Angel lacked in originality, the author Cassandra Clare more than made up for with her writing, character development, and research.

All readers appreciated the trueness of the London portrayed and the amount of time the author devoted to making the location and time period accurate. London was a character in this book and although she fictionalized it with the Underworld version, her attention to detail made the story real and genuine.

As always, book club was a delightful experience. Thanks to sisters Brooke and Caitlin, who did a wonderful job moderating and their little game was quite ingenious. Their creativity inspired me to think about how our society does tie objects to represent people. Who pops into your head when you hear stovepipe hat, apple, white glove, light bulb, a string of pearls or cherry tree. Cassandra tied that society norm to Tessa’s ability to transform into a person by touching one of their belongings.

Can you guess who from our book club identifies with the objects listed below?

Clock pendant 
Antiqued book


Tessa worried each time she changed into someone new she lost a piece of herself. She was afraid she didn’t quite change back into her former version. Maybe she wasn’t changing, but finding her true self. As you understand others more through relationships or for Tessa it was through memories, you shed some of your prejudice and transform into a new creature.

Sometimes people are afraid to accept ideas/thoughts/beliefs that are different than what they think for the very same reason. If they branch out and accept something new they may feel they are no longer themselves. In all actuality, when your heart and mind are open you are able to truly find yourself. While Tessa’s ability to actually change into another person is quite unique, I believe many people struggle with how she felt afterwards.

I guess the real question to ask is how do you adapt to others and still remain true to the real you?

We club members love books as much as Tessa did, so it was fun to read quotes from other literary that dictated her conscious or moral compass.

Tessa stated, “One must be careful of books and what’s inside them because they have the power to change us.”

Here is how Clockwork changed some of you:

Even though our family members may make poor decisions, we still need to love them. I love how Tessa still said at the end she loved her brother despite the fact that he basically sold her to the highest bidder. -Robin

Remember what you see isn't what you always get and we need to be kind and understanding to everyone we meet because you never know what personal battles they may be fighting at that moment. This book is packed full of reason to perceive the world with an open mind and observing eye. -Kelly

The book was a wonderful treat and left us wanting more. We can’t wait until September for book two in the series.

And so the battle begins: Team Gem or Team Will?

Just making sure you read to the end :)
Bethany: camera
Jillian: clock pendant
Robin: keys
Kelly: antiqued book
Sandra: shovel

Love ya all,


*Kelly* said...

AMAZING!! Fantastic book review Sandra, and thank you for all your hard work in putting it together!! I loved your idea of asking all of us to participate by asking us what item would represent us since Tessa used different objects to turn into other people.
Thanks again for your thought out review and insights.

Jennifer said...

First of, great review :) However, two small details that only an avid fan would mention. 1. Must you use the term team? After Twilight, everything turned into teams. Team Peeta or Gale? Team Jem or Will? And going off of that...2. His name is spelled Jem. Not Gem. I would assume that after reading the entire book you would know how to spell it correctly.
But other than those two details you did a great job reviewing the book :)It is one of my favorite series.