Clockwork Princess (Infernal Devices #3) by Cassandra Clare

THE INFERNAL DEVICES ARE WITHOUT PITY.

THE INFERNAL DEVICES ARE WITHOUT REGRET.

THE INFERNAL DEVICES ARE WITHOUT NUMBER.

THE INFERNAL DEVICES WILL NEVER STOP COMING.

Hidden in the mountains of Wales, rows of tin soldiers, automatons, are waiting. The Magister’s great creation is finally ready, with the unwilling help of Tessa Gray, to slaughter the Shadowhunters. An army is coming, metal on metal with the souls of demons, ready to battle without feelings or emotion. The Infernal Devices have consciousness now, and are set to destroy.

Benedict Lightwood is a worm. I’d forgotten this part. A great, serpent-like thing, his dalliances with demons have take away his humanity and transformed him into a monster. The Lightwood brothers are disturbed, disgusted, and horrified by what’s become of their father and take refuge in the London Institute, under the care of Charlotte Branwell.

Jem Carstairs is dying. He’s been dying, but his addiction has accelerated due to wanting to live – and love. After taking a year’s worth of yin fen in eight week’s time, his life force is quickly draining and there’s no more of the drug to be found. It’s heartbreak for his loved ones.

Tessa Gray is finally in The Magister’s possession. She learns of her true parentage and how she fits into his grand scheme. With only her Clockwork Angel to protect her, she must fight for her life, and everyone else she loves, in this final installment of The Infernal Devices.

One thing that bothers me is Consul Wayland’s hatred of Charlotte being head of the Institute, as well as the new Consul when Wayland steps down. Can a man be so blinded by thinking women are inferior that he’d risk his entire people because someone with ovaries is making sense? Possibly, and it keeps with the time, but I wish that had been further explained instead of being stopped with a blade.

I am glad I decided to reread this series. The non-stop pace, engaging stories, and lovable, albeit heartrending characters made quick reads throughout otherwise gloomy days. I hope one day Cassandra Clare writes more about Tessa and Will as adults. While they are involved in her most current series, The Last Hours, which was a wonderful surprise, I’m definitely craving more of their love story. Clockwork Princess’ ending had me bawling like it was 2013 all over again.

While I want to pick up the other books in this world and reread those as well, I definitely need a break. And just in time for some fall reads, which I’m also excited about. Until next time, nephilim.

Goodreads rating: 5 of 5 stars

Would I reread it again? Yes!

Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices #2) by Cassandra Clare

In 2011, when Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare was first released, I left a blurb on Goodreads saying “oh holy hell, this book.” I believe it was meant for the ending, but it’s been ten years, so one really doesn’t know.

Tessa Gray is coming to terms with her life in London. She’s living in the Institute with the Shadowhunters, beginning a training regimen under the Lightwoods, and closer to finding the truth about who – or what – she is. But things aren’t looking good for the London Institute, directed by Charlotte and Henry Branwell, they’ve come under fire for being neglectful of how it’s run, or perhaps the Clave just needs a guise to uproot a female leader. It is Victorian London, after all.

The Magister still seeks Tessa to be his own. She, along with the increasingly confusing and moody Will Herondale and the ever faithful Jem Carstairs, begin to unravel plots within plots as they race to uncover the mystery of his Clockwork Army, his true parentage, and the lifelong vendetta he holds against the Shadowhunters. And what does Benedict Lightwood have against them? Why is he suddenly so forceful in the removal of Charlotte from her position?

Cassandra Clare tells this book from shifting narratives, weaving Tessa’s story into Will’s with surprising outcomes. The ending is a shocker, but not so much if you’ve been paying attention.

All in all I’m glad to have picked this series up again. I’ll finish it out, but I wish I had thought to read this prior to reading The Last Hours series. While I recognized names and places, it would have been helpful to have the backstories fresh in my mind.

Goodreads rating: 5 of 5 stars

Would I read it again? Sure, it’s a regular reread!

We can’t kill our way out of this one.

Have you ever done a double take at a quote or a book title? I had that moment a few days ago when I came across this promo image on Pinterest for A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas. Released in 2018, apparently I added it to my never-ending TBR list on Goodreads, and it’s a novella – a side story to Maas’ best selling Court of Thorns and Roses series (also added to my TBR). While I’m currently making my way through some autumn inspired reads, the title and tagline of this have me entirely too intrigued. Hopefully I’ll remember to come back to it in a few weeks, and not leave it lost on a virtual shelf for another three years.

Chain of Iron (The Last Hours #2) by Cassandra Clare

Months after the Shadowhunter attacks of the summer, old fears return as a murderer walks loose in dawn hours. Patrols are set up, and Cordelia and her friends take personal interest in the deaths as James finds himself in a waking nightmare. Who is killing their own in the early hours? And why are the bodies located in such places? Why are they missing ruins?

For Cordelia Carstairs and the Merry Thieves, life in London continues on in Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare. Cordelia is married now, and only those closest to her know the truth behind her sham marriage vows. While she loves her husband desperately, she’s unnerved by the fact that he loves another. Together they brave increasingly romantic moments while trying to remind themselves of promises made.

Lucie Herondale discovers a strange new power. She’s always been able to see ghosts as it’s a Herondale family trait, but now she finds she’s able to command them to her will. Together with Grace Blackthorn, the unlikely pair begin to dive into necromancy and illegal magic in effort to raise Grace’s brother Jesse from the dead. Neither trusts the other, but their mutual love for Jesse brings them together in fantastical escapades.

Matthew Fairchild is determined to live his life in an obliterated state. Golden, charismatic, with a cheshire smile – he should have the world at his feet. But between harboring secrets and drowning himself in alcohol, and his friends and family become increasingly worried that he’ll be his own ruin.

While I’ve grown out of Cassandra Clare’s overwhelming descriptions of young love and beauty, I really enjoyed Chain of Iron and was sad to realize there’s no release date for the third installment of The Last Hours series. Clare churns books out like clockwork, but world events have put a damper even on publishing, I imagine. She’s got multiple books in this universe and they have a special place in my heart. I haven’t read all of her side stories, but I do think I’ll revisit the prequel series to The Last Hours, Infernal Devices. It’s been awhile.

The Project by Courtney Summers

The picturesque background of upstate New York holds a mystery Lo Denham has been trying to unravel for six years. Where is her sister? Lo’s been working as an assistant to the head of SVO, and up and coming magazine, for a year and is finally ready to get her byline – by investigating the truth of The Unity Project, the community her sister Bea loses herself in shortly after their parents deaths.

Bea Denham joins The Unity Project, a cult to everyone else, that bases itself on love, acceptance, and faith. Her little sister was brought back to life by their charismatic leader, Lev Warren. She leaves Lo in the care of their great Aunt and begins a semi-reclusive life working to grow The Project’s outreach.

Foster worked in an emergency room, where by chance he has a run in with Bea in the hospital chapel after losing a young patient. He’s brought into The Project as the perfect soldier. He’s a young man searching for more than the hurt and death he sees daily.

Told from a shifting narrative, The Project by Courtney Summers entwines the lives of the lost, the lonely, and those searching for the truth in a fast paced thriller centering on how much damage one man with too many idealizations about himself can cause. I was a little skeptical going in. I saw the hype over this book on social media and I’ve read a book or two by the author in the past, but nothing that stuck with me. But after the initial set up I was hooked, reaching for it in-between Sunday tasks and checking the latest hurricane coverage. It’s gripping and raw, and I’ll be thinking about it for a long time.