Friday, 29 March 2013

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare is the final volume of the Infernal Devices trilogy. I have previously reviewed the first two books, Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince and have enjoyed the trilogy immensely. It's hard to write this review without spoilers, so I'm afraid it's going to be a little shorter than usual.

Clockwork Princess picks up a few months after Clockwork Prince left off and jumps into action very quickly. It follows the story of Tessa, Jem, Will and friends as they confront Mortmain and his infernal devices for the final time. There's love, heartbreak, battles, demons, kidnapping, daring-do, magic and generally all that we've come to expect from Clare's books.

The Infernal Devices trilogy is hands-down the best example of a YA (or, thinking about it, any) love-triangle I have ever read. It's handled beautifully and is so much more than just a plot device to annoy the heroine with. (Also, if you're interested in the author's thoughts on love triangles, you can read more SPOILER WARNINGLY here.) I wouldn't be disappointed if I never read a love triangle YA book again (although, what are the chances of that?).

Clare deftly avoids an ending/climax resolution that could have been overly deus ex machina in the hands of another writer. In fact I've seen similar endings go that way, but Clare threw in the right amount of hints that it made perfect sense, even though I didn't see it coming. Finally, I have to say, the epilogue had a bit of fanservice to it but not in a bad way; it was both heartbreaking and lovely. All in all, this is a concluding volume that most fans will love.

I highly recommend the Infernal Devices trilogy to fans of Victorian era stories and YA with paranormal elements. I do not suggest starting with Clockwork Princess under any circumstances, since it very much builds on the previous two books. Start with Clockwork Angel, if you're new to the series. For people who read Clare's Mortal Instruments series, I also recommend the Infernal Devices, even if you didn't love the Mortal Instruments. The setting and characters are quite different and personally I prefer the Infernal Devices gang.

4.5 / 5 stars

First published: March 2013, Walker Books (UK edition)
Series: The Infernal Devices, book three of three
Format read: Trade paperback
Source: Purchased as a pre-order from Book Depository

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