Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.
Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by—and torn between—two best friends: Jem, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa.
As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.
Taken from GoodReads.
We start Clockwork Angel in London, following teenage Tessa Gray after she was lured under to London under false pretense and as her human life slowly unravels and she discovers through strenuous, painful, and torturous means that she isn't as human as she thought she was. A rare breed of Downworlder, Tessa is thrust headlong into a battle between the world of the Shadowhunters and those who seek to destroy the powerful race of Nephilim. Along with Will Herondale, Charlotte Branwell, Jessamine, Henry and Jem, Tessa must take a side and make a choice.
That's an extremely vague overview of Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare, but I know there are a lot of people who have yet to read it, so I'm not going to spoil it for them. First of all, I should say that I've had a horrible time with prologues lately, so I skipped it, read the first chapter, and went back. I'm still not a fan of prologues, but I'm going to start with what I liked about this book. The plot moved quickly, the language was clear, and the characters were perfectly defined. I enjoyed the time period...I think it is more fitting and intriguing than that of The Mortal Instruments.
Here's where it gets tricky for me though - the characters are fun, that's not in question, but is it just me, or are they pretty much replicas of those from The Mortal Instruments? Will is Jace (who, by the way, still appeals to me more), Jem is Alec, Jessamine is Isabelle, and Tessa is Clary. The parallels and similarities in this character set-up was a bit too much for me. And, for the record, I think Tessa was a bit too over-the-top, and her reactions to things quite confused me at times. In that sense, I really preferred Clary.
Basically, what I'm saying is that Clockwork Angel is a good read, but it's not so different from The Mortal Instruments. I guess I was hoping for more of a prequel in the set-up of the world, but Clockwork Angel almost seemed to assume we knew what was going on from The Mortal Instruments which, I think, defeats the purpose of a prequel. That said, I still enjoyed the writing of this book, and it was definitely entertained. I give this book a 4 out of 5, and I will recommend to fans of Fantasy, Science Fiction, and The Mortal Instruments series.