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Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices) Hardcover – March 19, 2013
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Oh, the angst in the final book in Clare’s Victorian-era steampunk trilogy, Infernal Devices! With the cunning and dangerous Mortmain still on the loose and threatening Shadowhunters everywhere, as well as unresolved feelings still in her heart, bride-to-be Tessa finds it increasingly challenging to get excited about her upcoming nuptials. Still, life must go on, and on and on it goes for Tessa’s resilient people. As Tessa finally learns what she is and what that means to both Mortmain and the world, the choices she must make will affect Shadowhunters and Downworlders forever. While there are a few surprising twists, this series conclusion seems devoted to resolving all of the loose threads and mysteries from the earlier books. Fans will feel great satisfaction in learning the answers to all of the questions from the previous volumes, but they’ll likely feel sadness, too, as the exhilarating saga comes to a close. A must-read for Clare’s fans, this is also highly recommended for followers of Gail Carriger’s Finishing School books and Melissa de la Cruz’s Blue Blood series. Grades 9-12. --Candice Mack
"Compelling and believable...it may be Clare's best undertaking to date." (Entertainment Weekly)
"The unusual, satisfyingly indulgent conclusion will leave fans emotionally satiated. " (Kirkus Reviews)
"A must-read." (Booklist)
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Will continues to be my favourite focus of any scene with his witty comments and sense of humour. It was nice to see him play off his sister at times, because normally only Tessa can manage Will. Although they have been apart for many years they still have a wonderfully authentic relationship, like how easily she is able to get under his skin. Will and Jem’s parabatai relationship, as it was in the previous books, is so real that you can easily imagine the love they have for one another, the pain each feels when the other is hurt, and how they would do anything for each other.
It was nice to see the continued development of characters that we’ve grown to love, as well as the new faces that have joined the familiar at the Institute. The number of important characters does not ever feel overwhelming or confusing, as each has been given the time to become established and grow in the world that Cassandra Clare has created. I love each and every one of the characters because they are not only true but integral to the story as a whole.
Despite having read this entire series before and knowing what will happen – it is still so brilliantly written that it elicits myriad emotions throughout. Each character feels real and their lives affect your own. A tear slips down my face as one character experiences unbearable pain, while another comes at the thought of losing a character I’ve grown to love so much. A grin overtakes my face in light of the overwhelmingly happy news. The books that I have grown to love are the ones that speak to you, change you, and will forever stay with you.
Clockwork Princess is quite possibly the best series finale that I have read and certainly the best final book in a trilogy. Despite the book causing me to cry, multiple times, I never felt dissatisfied with the conclusion. The story comes to a climactic end, then Cassandra Clare takes the final chapter to pull everything together and the epilogue to make me cry again. I loved re-reading this series so much and hope that you are inspired to read it as well.
I was so afraid to start reading this book. Truth be told, The Infernal Devices is my favorite of the two series, although I still hold a lot of love for The Mortal Instruments. Something about the Victorian setting or Tessa, who I can relate to more than Clary, grabbed me from the first word. The first thing you should know is that you will have many, many questions answered in this book. Some of those questions carry over to TMI and then some bounce back again and won't be entirely answered until City of Heavenly Fire is released. (Those questions aren't integral to the story, so you can still read one series without having to read the other.) There was intense action and suspense, and I was so pleased at how much the women in this book stepped up and fought, both physically and emotionally. There were so many difficult situations and decisions that I'm not exactly sure how it all fit in to one final book, but it did, and brilliantly so. There were some incredibly touching scenes involving Magnus, who I felt like we got to know a lot better in this book. I loved the romances of some the side characters combined with the dry sense of humor that has defined this series. I laughed out loud just as many times as I reached for the tissue.
There will be some that won't be happy with the ending. The epilogue, which Clare already revealed pre-publication begins in 2008, seems to take place after the events of City of Heavenly Fire are resolved. I found that interesting since, of course, that book won't be released until 2014. The way the two series puzzle piece together is fascinating and it's almost as if we got an ending to both series, but without really knowing what happens. It was very cleverly done. Am I happy with the ending? Yes, I am. So many questions were answered and I felt that, as a reader, I got to see everyone's ending, for better or for worse. There were certainly parts that were profoundly sad, but I found it to be more of a deeply poignant sadness rather than a 'WHY, GOD, WHY??' type of sadness, if that makes sense. In any event, I am sad to say goodbye to the London Institute and I didn't realize how attached I had become to everyone until I read the very last page.