Oh my goodness. This was a VERY satisfying conclusion. You can't have a book like this with the fights of good and evil without CONSEQUENCES! Can I ma...moreOh my goodness. This was a VERY satisfying conclusion. You can't have a book like this with the fights of good and evil without CONSEQUENCES! Can I marry Patrick Ness's genius?! (less)
This book is spectacular and spectacularly creepy. It somehow manages not to be too fluffy, or cheesy, or cliche. I loved it the first time I read it,...moreThis book is spectacular and spectacularly creepy. It somehow manages not to be too fluffy, or cheesy, or cliche. I loved it the first time I read it, and it was just as enjoyable the second!
First read September 25, 2011 Reread November 19, 2012(less)
Readers have come to expect certain things from any book written by Cassandra Clare:
*Prose that packs a punch, flowing from the gorgeously poetic to...moreReaders have come to expect certain things from any book written by Cassandra Clare:
*Prose that packs a punch, flowing from the gorgeously poetic to the viscerally gritty and back again so seamlessly that you forget you’re reading at all as scenes bleed from the page into your mind’s eye.
*Dialogue that is so riotously hilarious that you will quote lines at your friends for ages, as well as dialogue that feels so profoundly personal you want to tattoo it onto your body.
*Characters that we genuinely care about. Characters that we wish to be, or to have fall in love with us. Characters that we love, and hate, and love to hate who make us reevaluate our own world views along the way. Characters that are each their very own complete creation, and so fleshed out that they come fully to life for the reader. Characters with personalities and quirks and preferences and histories, characters that are never stereotypes or caricatures or tokens. Characters with internal and external motivations for their actions, for whom there is always a reason *why.* Have no doubt, Clare knows even the internal motivations of Will’s cannibal mallard ducks. (I suspect hunger.)
*Captivating storylines so perfectly paced that you flip hungrily through the pages until they’re all gone and then you flip through the calendar pages to see how torturously long the wait for the next book will be.
*At least one scene so hot that it makes you blush. At least one scene so heartbreaking that it makes you cry. At least one scene so ninja-out-of-the-blue hilarious that you burst into surprised laughter no matter where you are. And – if it’s not the last book of a series – an ending that will leave you with bald spots from where you ripped out your own hair in agony.
I’ve made no bones (or cities thereof…haha, I’m so punny) about the fact that I am a HUGE Cassandra Clare fan. She’s my absolute favorite author, and I’ve loved every single one of her books fiercely. I think all of her writing is genius, but she’s completely outdone herself with CLOCKWORK PRINCE. All of those things I mentioned that readers have come to expect from her work were not only present in CP, they were even *more* refined than in her previous work. I wouldn’t have thought it possible, but she’s growing in her craft. CLOCKWORK PRINCE is ~ to date ~ my favorite book of all time!
If you’ve read CLOCKWORK ANGEL (and if you haven’t then get thee to the bookstore!) then surely you’ve guessed that CLOCKWORK PRINCE deals in part with the developing love triangle between Will, Tessa, and Jem. Now, I’ve always been a sucker for good romantic angst. The twisted and broken love story between Jace and Clary in Clare’s Mortal Instruments series was just about the most delicious heartfail I’d ever tasted. But if you’ve read many love triangles, then you know that they usually involve some suspension of disbelief. “Why do these boys just keep falling in love with this girl?” Usually, that answer is quite simple. Usually the answer is merely “because she is the protagonist.” Not so in PRINCE.
The Tessa Gray we met and grew to know in CLOCKWORK ANGEL is one of the strongest, most endearing female characters I’d ever read. The depths of her personality that are explored in PRINCE elevated her from “one of the most” to “the most.” She’s strong and independent without being foolish or prideful enough to refuse help when she needs it. Her capacity for love, trust, and forgiveness is inspiring given all that has happened to her by the end of book one, but she is not so careless that she doesn’t protect her heart. She’s smart and funny and kind, but she isn’t perfect. She maintains her humanity (despite her am I a warlock? Am I NOT a warlock? status) and thus her capacity to make mistakes, and to *learn* from her mistakes. She’s the type of character we don’t see often enough in YA literature, the type of role model that is so often lacking in the sea of female protags so spineless and featureless that we can superimpose our own traits onto them.
When you view Tessa set up next to Will and Jem as we knew them in ANGEL, and even more so as we get to know them more in PRINCE – their personalities, their histories, their motivations and the relationships they’ve formed (or not formed) in the past—the question ceases to be the usual “why do these boys keep falling in love with her?” The question is clearly “How could they not?”
I’m not going to go into any kind of plot synopsis here, there’s really nothing specific I can say without giving away some of the surprises that make the reading so delectable. But I will say that right from the very first page I was completely engaged in the story. I squealed in delight and cried tears of sadness AND of joy, and at one point shouted “She did NOT! She did NOT. HOLY CRAP SHE DID!!” aloud. I enjoyed reading CLOCKWORK PRINCE more than I’ve ever enjoyed reading any other book. Ever.
Whatever you’re hoping for in this book, your expectations WILL be surpassed. Clare will lead you in a direction to where you’re sure you know what’s about to happen, then throw a curve so fast and hard that you’re left shaking your head and holding your breath. This book is so beautifully constructed that it will make it exceedingly difficult for you to choose a follow up book to read, because the vast majority of what’s out there is a flickering candle against the blazing witchlight of Cassandra Clare’s latest masterpiece. One of the characters says “It was books that made me feel I was not completely alone. They could be honest with me, and I with them.” That is, at the heart of it, the type of book CLOCKWORK PRINCE is. It’s a book whose story—though filled with the fantastically impossible – is a book that offers a true and honest story to anyone who visits its pages. A book that demands our own honesty in return. It is a book that does exactly what the very best books are supposed to do. It makes you *feel.*
First read Sept 9, 2011. Read aloud October 2011 Listened to audiobook November 2012 Listened to audiobook March 18, 2013(less)