Kat Kennedy's Reviews > Clockwork Angel

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
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Dec 04, 13

bookshelves: kat-s-book-reviews, just-plain-bad, books-that-deserve-painful-death, kat-s-rants, ya-pnr-maddness
Recommended for: Don't ask. I'll only start swearing.
Read from September 06 to November 09, 2010, read count: 1

** spoiler alert ** A lot of Goodreads friends that I have, people I deeply respect and whose opinions I actually hold in great value gave this book lots of stars and glowing reviews. Friends of mine, you know I adore you, so please don't take offense at this review. If you enjoyed this book then I’m really glad you did. It makes me happy when people enjoy literature. So you probably shouldn't read this review if you love this book. And you especially shouldn’t read the following statement and my extremely volatile expression of it:

Without any doubt, in my not-so-professional opinion, this book is a little, flaccid dick waving free in the breeze of literature trying its very bestest to hardened up and bugger us all in the ass

My advice: don't let it.

It's nice to know that even though Cassandra Clare's Draco Trilogy ended years ago, I can pick up ANY SINGLE ONE of her books that she has published and see not only Draco’s character, but all my old friends from the Harry Potter Fanon Universe with different names and physical descriptions but otherwise pretty much intact. Because seven really long books just wasn’t enough for them apparently.

It's nice to know that the snappy little one-liners and cheap hijinks are being recycled because they worked so well the first AND second time she used them.

I don't think I've made it any great secret that I despise the writings of Cassandra Clare - so let me get the, few, good points out of the way so I can go back to imagining a world where authors like this are forcibly chained to their desks and made to read their own stories over and over again until they’re sorry.

-She stopped using so many damn similes. I no longer feel like gouging out my own eyes every single time she tries to describe something.

-There is no creepy incest in this book so my husband was spared walking in on me trying to choke the life out of a paperback novel.

And… that about it. I mean, let’s face it, if the only good things I can say about this book are that she’s made slight improvements so that I no longer feel the urge to commit seppuku by diving head first into a meat grinder, then it’s not high praise.

So what was wrong with this novel? Well, other than the fact that the characters were almost CARBON COPIES of ones that I’d read in City of Bones, Draco Dormiens, Draco Sinister and Draco Veritas, there was just so much to hate. The character building that they actually DO have only exists because she did the work years ago (on top of another author's pre-existing characters) – otherwise they’d be little more animated than the clockwork automatons that appear in this story.

Don’t get me started on how she wiki’d “Victorian Society”, copy and pasted the information into word and then randomly injected it into the story via the characters parroting the cans and can’ts of the time period. Not even going there. It’ll take too long to complain about that.

How about her inability to write a storyline that is in anyway surprising? Reading one of her novels is like watching a dumbed down version of Scooby Doo. I actually liked Scooby Doo (before Scrappy-Doo came along. Whoever made that character needed to be shot, hung, kheelhauled and quartered – the whole works) but you know how they’d go somewhere and they’d be like, “Hey guys, I think something’s going to happen! Hey, look gang, a perfectly inconspicuous diving mask… I WONDER IF THIS COULD BE A CLUE *WINK**WINK**NUDGE**NUDGE* FOR ALL THE FIVE YEAR OLD KIDS PLAYING AT HOME!”

In Clockwork Angel, Clare practically flags you down, makes you come look VERY hard at her clue that is painted bright, bright red and poorly hidden behind her back while she insists that it’s not actually there and giggles every time she tries to make you not look at her ENORMOUS FLIPPIN' CLUE. She insists on this behaviour until finally you pat her on the head, tell her that she ALMOST managed to colour inside all the lines.

The whole concept of this book wasn’t original! It was her looking at the Internet culture going, “Huh… so people are really getting into steampunk, eh? Hmmmm… how can I cash in on this with as little effort on my behalf as possible?”

She is recycling characters that she built on from the Harry Potter universe years ago. She's recycling storylines, conversations, personalities, plot-points, ideas and concepts from all around her and she recycles her own stuff (what little there is of it) just as frequently.

When she was accused of plagiarism for lifting entire paragraphs of text from other authors without referencing it, she made a comment that it didn't really matter because - hey, isn't fanfiction just pastiche anyway?

Well, fine. It was just fanfiction, who really cares? But I'd think after all these years she would have moved on past her pastiche style of writing to something that she could actually claim as her own.

But you know what? She can't. It seems she's entirely incapable of it. She is doing the literary equivalent of attempting to f@^# us all up the ass, without lube, and I for one don’t intend to sit around and take it. I feel no guilt in saying that she doesn’t deserve to be published or to be earning the money that she is. I will proudly complain about her books until she actually starts to care about the fudge that she’s packing.


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Reading Progress

09/06/2010 page 1
0.0% "Okay, here we go on our magical adventure!"
09/09/2010 page 230
48.0% "Cue: groan. So boring..." 25 comments

Comments (showing 301-350 of 557) (557 new)


message 301: by [deleted user] (new)

"this book is a little, flaccid dick waving free in the breeze of literature trying its very bestest to hardened up and bugger us all in the ass" And just like that, in flames goes down an author. Not that I needed much encouragement in dropping her books after reading the Mortal Instruments trilogy (yeah, what can I say, I sicken myself sometimes). Could not finish the fourth attempt, wont ever touch another of her books. Thanks for the reassurance, and the laughs your perfect description is still inducing.


message 302: by Kala (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kala I totally disagree about the book - I loved it and I adore Clare's work, but this review was pretty funny. I wish you had left the troll comments in, it's difficult to follow with them deleted! :P


message 303: by Dorkstatus (new) - added it

Dorkstatus This review was thoroughly satisfying to read.


Brittanie I didn't see any of the Harry Potter characters recycled in this book series...


message 305: by Kala (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kala She's talking about the author's Harry Potter fanfiction that was written like 10 years ago.


Kat Kennedy As I have said previously - I was originally a fan of hers. I kept hoping she'd get better. I've read two of her published books. People asked me to read them because they wanted my opinion. It's not uncommon. I've tried Gaiman 3 times and not meshed with him either.


message 307: by Dija (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dija Best. Review. Ever.


Kat Kennedy Strong fanbase, familiar material, ctrl V'd witty dialogue reminiscent of other, better sources. That's the best I can deduce.


message 309: by [deleted user] (new)

Kat wrote: "Strong fanbase, familiar material, ctrl V'd witty dialogue reminiscent of other, better sources. That's the best I can deduce."

Yeap, yeah, big YES. Perfect triple point. Book sells, serious readers weep.
As long as it makes someone read, I usually don't mind much, but these are so sucky I'm making an exception on that rule and call them crap. Recicled crap.


message 310: by Sierra (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sierra Bamiro Haha, I was definitely clued in to Will's character having tousled black hair that never stayed still lol


Michelle Herondale Can you tell me where you read the Draco Trilogy??


message 312: by Emma (new)

Emma I hate Scrappy Doo. When he used to say 'Let me at 'em' I really, really wished they would. So that he could get hurt. A lot.


message 313: by Judith (new)

Judith Without any doubt, in my not-so-professional opinion, this book is a little, flaccid dick waving free in the breeze of literature trying its very bestest to hardened up and bugger us all in the ass

I don't know who you are, but I love you. I'm sorry you had to suffer through this book. But not by very much because this review is one of the best things ever.


Kat Kennedy Thank you, Judith. it was a price I was willing to pay for my Goodreads community.


Amanda (ALittleBitofFrost) While I have not read the book, this review made me crack up. I'm not quite sure what I think of Cassandra Clare yet, but I am definitely going to be looking out now. lol Kat, I just have to say that I adore all your reviews. You're so brutally honest in every one of them. :)


message 316: by [deleted user] (new)

So I read City of Bones and had pretty much the same reaction you had to it. Was considering reading this book because so meany people seem to be raving about it. You'd think I'd have learned my lesson, but I guess not. I'm glad I came across this review before I made the mistake of picking this up.


Kat Kennedy Yeah. This is pretty much City of Bones with tophats and delusions of Steampunk. If that sounds appealing to you then knock yourself out. No, really. Knock yourself out. Effects of over all braincells is going to be about the same.


message 318: by Kala (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kala This is pretty much City of Bones with tophats and delusions of Steampunk.

LOL! I love that description! I liked the book, but I totally agree with the above :P


message 319: by Jenni (new)

Jenni Arndt WOW! Never before have I heard a book referred to as a flaccid dick. I like the analogy! I haven't read this series simply because there are so many rave reviews about it and I tend to strongly dislike the books everyone loves.

Great review!


message 320: by Lady (new)

Lady Godiva This review is so accurate I cann't even begin how perfectly it describes it.


message 321: by Circuit (new)

Circuit Wow :) I think I might read it. Just to see if it's really that bad. I figured nothing can be worse than "Just my luck". But then again who knows I might have another on the shit list :)( Just my luck is feeling lonely)


message 322: by Talyn (new) - rated it 2 stars

Talyn You re saying that this woman already wrote HP fanfiction before getting published? Well there actually are some truly wonderful and well thought out fanfictions of various movies, tv shows, books, animes, video games, etc. But why are theze peopke getting book deals? Doesnt it seem like it's happening frequently all of a sudden? I mean with 50 Shadez of Gray being a huge best seller, it seems kind of odd...


message 323: by Carly (new) - rated it 4 stars

Carly Chapman Okay, I don't mean to be rude, but, you're a jerk! I own this book and I find it very good. Please don't take offense to this, I'm just stating my opinion. I would of gone off on you, but I decided that it wasn't worth it. Anyway, like I said, please do not take offense to me or my opinion, okay? If you read this comment, I thank you, if not, oh well.


Kat Kennedy Please don't take offense to this, but fuck off. I don't mean to be rude but I think you don't have a brain in that cesspool you call ahead. Like I said, don't take offense. This is just my opinion but you are an oxygen thief.


message 325: by Katie (new) - added it

Katie "Pretty much COB with tophats..." You crack me up!


message 326: by [deleted user] (new)

Carly wrote: "Okay, I don't mean to be rude, but, you're a jerk! I own this book and I find it very good. Please don't take offense to this, I'm just stating my opinion. I would of gone off on you, but I decided..."
Don't take offense to being unfairly called a JERK because her opinion is not shared by you?
If you think it is great, then write a review, build a shrine, or cover your owned book with peanut butter and offer it to the moon gods. But calling someone a jerk because they do not like a book you like is a really bitchy thing to do. But don't take offense to that statement! Because if I add that disclaimer at the end, then everything is cool.
Wander back to your own little troll cave and kindly fuck off.


Skittles (Skyla) Carly wrote: "Okay, I don't mean to be rude, but, you're a jerk! I own this book and I find it very good. Please don't take offense to this, I'm just stating my opinion. I would of gone off on you, but I decided..."

I'd say you are the one who is a jerk not Kat. She stated her opinion on a book. You unfairly called her a jerk because you didn't like her opinion on a BOOK therefore YOU are the jerk. And now you are blocked.


TheBookofJules Carly, you have gone past the "just stating my opinion" defense and entered into the realm of slander and insult. You are more than welcome to disagree with Kat's review, but if you're going to do so then you should write your own review where you can tell about why you loved the book. A hateful comment such as that has no place on this review and certainly no place in Goodreads.

Kat, while I loved this book, your review brought up great points. I always look forward to your thoughtful and thorough reviews.


archdandy I get why a lot of people don't like Cassandra Clare's work. I see people explaining all the time how she uses Harry Potter characters in her books. But I still enjoy the Mortal Instrument series and I did enjoy the first book in this series even though the characters are the exact same as the characters in her other series. Its kind of a fluff book for me that I enjoy reading and then don't think about again until I read the next one. Great review Kat!


message 330: by Kala (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kala Carly wrote: "Okay, I don't mean to be rude, but, you're a jerk! I own this book and I find it very good. Please don't take offense to this, I'm just stating my opinion. I would of gone off on you, but I decided..."

I ADORE this book (and the entire Mortal Instruments series as well), but I still also enjoy Kat's reviews. Just because I don't have the exact same taste doesn't mean her opinion is less valid. Calling someone a jerk because they don't agree with you is just in really poor class.


WitchyKilljoy Maybe I'm wrong, but to me it seems that you have strong bias against Clare. If she wrote a book on how to cure AIDS or cancer, I have a feeling you would destroy it as you did CA. Just an impression I got.

I enjoy her books because she is able to write many characters, races and locations without confusing her audience. Her books are quick and exciting reads. There is worse crap out there, like Fallen and Hush Hush series which are ATROCIOUS. I thought CA had a nice flow and ton of interesting characters. I enjoyed Tessa immensely. Moreso than Clary who I found immature and annoying at times. I find it important that main heroine be likeable and real, and Tessa came off real to me. She is kinda timid and average which is why her attraction to Will is much stronger than audience would like because he is a JERK, especially at the end when he pretty much treats like a prostitue. That really made me scream, but not as loudly as Jace and Clary being siblings.
Will might be the typical badboy trope but the chemistry between was strong and intense. One of the main positives for me was how comfortable Tessa was in her own sexuality. She may have not bluntly expressed it, but she definitely was not affraid of whatever was going on with her body and emotions. I thought that was very sexually progressive for a victorian era setting without being obvious and in your face.

But I do see the points you've made. I guess I turn my head the other way for the sake of enjoying a fun, paranormal book.


message 332: by [deleted user] (new)

Jovana - please write your own review. Kat has a right to her opinion of a book. If she doesn't like the author, then goody for her. She's free to make her own decisions.


WitchyKilljoy Lyn, I thought this is where people shared opinions. I respect Kat's review. I just added my own two cents, and please dont tell me what to do.


message 334: by [deleted user] (new)

Yes, I will tell you to write your own review. That first sentence is very passive aggressive. You are making an assumption that Kat wouldn't like anything by this author. Very rude.


WitchyKilljoy "Yes, I will tell you to write your own review."

Hahaha. Thanks for the chuckle. Good day to you.


message 336: by [deleted user] (new)

No problem. Hope you learn some manner.


Michelle Herondale She wasn't being rude.. She was simply giving her thoughts and opinions on what Kat wrote. Isn't that why you can comment on somebodies review?


Michelle Herondale Honestly there is no reasons to get butt hurt over other peoples opinions. It's ridiculous.


message 339: by [deleted user] (new)

Michelle Herondale wrote: "She wasn't being rude.. She was simply giving her thoughts and opinions on what Kat wrote. Isn't that why you can comment on somebodies review?"

Maybe I'm wrong, but to me it seems that you have strong bias against Clare. If she wrote a book on how to cure AIDS or cancer, I have a feeling you would destroy it as you did CA.
How is that not rude? She's making assumptions that this reviewer would be hateful enough to dislike any book she wrote.


message 340: by [deleted user] (new)

Michelle Herondale wrote: "Honestly there is no reasons to get butt hurt over other peoples opinions. It's ridiculous."

Not butt hurt. I see that you're just another fangil of this series. If you like it, write your own review. Don't go onto someone else's review and make some assumptions.


WitchyKilljoy Lyn, calm down. Take a deep breath. Now exhale. Dont give yourself a stroke here. Everything will be ok...its just a book.


message 342: by [deleted user] (new)

Jovana J wrote: "Lyn, calm down. Take a deep breath. Now exhale. Dont give yourself a stroke here. Everything will be ok...its just a book."

Says the person who jumps to conclusions about someone else. Go find a new hobby. Because you're just looking like an idiot now.


Michelle Herondale I am not making assumptions about her review. It was perfectly fine she is entitled her opinion, and I actually liked her review. I was talking to you. The other girl wasn't being rude (Which isn't an assumption its called a FACT) she was just stating her opinion as Kat did.
You are the one making assumptions about others. I actually find it hilarious. You are contradicting yourself.


WitchyKilljoy Lyn, I recommend vicks vapor rub. The mint really calms the body and spirit. Its a wonderful product.


message 345: by [deleted user] (last edited Aug 03, 2012 11:25AM) (new)

Whatever, to the both of you. You both are not worth the energy. If you liked it, write your own review. Don't be hateful. I'm not taking anything back that I said, and I find it flat our RUDE that you can tell someone that "Well, it is because YOU didn't like the author. This book was great."


message 346: by Kala (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kala o.O


Michelle Herondale While I would love to sit here, and argue with you all day I have a woefully boring engagement known to many as school.


message 348: by Choco (new)

Choco You know what? I don't think Clare would be able to write anything about AIDs or Cancer. Because she can't write without stealing other people's work. There's my opinion on the matter.

Could you stop with assuming that people dislike books because of the author? If Clare wrote well, even if I didn't like her as a person, I would acknowledge that she can write.

For me, I don't like any of Clare's work because I don't like her writing, her style, her plagiarism, and her as a person. What of it? I'm not sure about Kat, but really, there's no need for that. People have different tastes and there are a billion books out there. Why should you make others feel bad for not liking some?


Skittles (Skyla) Like Orson Scott Card. I loathe the man as a person because I find him homophobic, cocky, arrogant and a chauvinistic pig, but the man can write.


message 350: by [deleted user] (new)

Pottle wrote: "You know what? I don't think Clare would be able to write anything about AIDs or Cancer. Because she can't write without stealing other people's work. There's my opinion on the matter.

Could you s..."

Voice of reason! I love you!


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