Review: Clockwork Angel

Series: The Infernal Devices: #1

“One must always be careful of books," said Tessa, “and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.”

It’s been rather a while since I read City of Bones–long enough that it was before I actually started writing reviews. And long enough that I only barely remember what happened in those other books. I do vaguely remember the world building being an interesting enough take on urban fantasy –I have a personal love of books dealing with angels and half angels– surrounding an otherwise interesting enough plot.

And… that’s about what you get in Clockwork Angel .

In theory, it’s urban fantasy set in Victorian England, except other than a few vague mentions, you could easily forget (and I did from time to time) and think it’s set in the more common to urban fantasy modern day. Which is a bummer; I would have liked a stronger steampunky vibe that they appear to have been going for–what with the clockwork baddies we eventually get (Although they don’t really ‘feel’ clockwork. They just feel like faceless baddies. Does that make sense?)

Characterwise, Theresa is ‘something that shouldn’t exist’, which annoys me and seems like a fairly normal teen protagonist. Annoying, but acceptable. Her brother is pretty much a McGuffin turned obvious baddie, le twist? . Will is moody and broody and teeny as well, with some ‘big, dark secret’ that… we never really get to? I guess there are sequels. Jem has a lot of potential–among the race of superpowered half human warriors, he has some sort of magical blood sickness. Henry is cool! But everyone puts him down for tinkering and being absentminded and … it just sort of fades away.

Overall, there wasn’t really anyone that I could really get behind and support or anyone that I truly wanted to hate.

That all being said, it’s not a terrible book by any stretch of the imagination (despite my ranting) and serves rather well as a bit of ‘popcorn fantasy’. Don’t expect too much and you’ll likely be pleasantly surprised. I’m going to give the sequels a chance after all.