Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

“When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray arrives in England during the reign of Queen Victoria, something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural fold stalk the gaslit streets. Drawn ever deeper into their world, she finds herself fascinated by – and torn between – two best friends and quickly realizes that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.”

This is the first in Clare’s Infernal Devices trilogy, which are basically prequels to Mortal Instruments. Tessa arrives in London from New York to stay with her brother, Nate, after her aunt – her only guardian – passes away. When she arrives, however, she meets the sinister Dark Sisters who insist they have been sent by her brother; eventually, it turns out that they have some other ideas. They keep her prisoner and she learns that she has the ability to turn into anyone and access their memories as soon as she touches something that belongs to them – and this ability makes her one of the most hunted people in Downworld London, a place where vampires, warlocks and other creatures roam – as well as Shadowhunters, whom she eventually seeks refuge with.

 I didn’t enjoy this nearly as much as I enjoyed City of Bones, sadly, because it was far too similar to Mortal Instruments – and I know people who dislike Mortal Instruments because of the similarity to Infernal Devices, depending on which series they read first. The Shadowhunters, Will and Jem, seemed irritatingly familiar throughout the book – although I adored Will. Essentially, this is because Will is a Jace who looks like Alec and Jem is an Alec who looks like Jace. (Alec and Jace being characters from Mortal Instruments.) There’s also another love triangle, as in Clare’s previous books – so essentially, the book failed to get me hooked. Clare’s writing is pretty good, but the lack of new ideas meant I didn’t really enjoy the book.

That said, though, I probably would’ve enjoyed the books more if I hadn’t read Mortal Instruments first. Overall, though, I recommend reading Mortal Instruments over these – I enjoyed those more.

The book’s aimed at teens – probably twelve-ish and above, really. It doesn’t matter much with these books. They aren’t bad, but they aren’t fantastic, either.

 

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INSURGENT by Veronica Roth

Second book in the Divergent trilogy by Veronica RothInsurgent by Veronica Roth

The inter-faction war has started and the country is in chaos. Tris, Tobias, Marcus and some other members of Abnegation are on their way to Amity Headquarters to try and find refuge from the battle. They soon reach Amity, and are told by their faction leader that they can stay in Amity for as long as they wish, as long as they give up all of their weapons and not start fights. Tris and Tobias agree.

Later, Tris overhears Marcus and the Amity leader, Johanna, discussing something strange, and she corners Marcus and demands to know what they were talking about. Marcus confesses that Abnegation’s leaders died to protect a secret, but he tells her nothing else. This angers Tris.

Meanwhile, Tris is having nightmares about how she killed her friend, Will, while he was under a simulation, always realizing how she could have done something else to stop him killing her. This is made worse because she hasn’t confided in anyone, not even Tobias.

Soon, the Eritude arrive at Amity with the Dauntless traitors. Tris tells everyone to dress like the Amity so they won’t recognize the Abnegation with Tris and Tobias, but Tobias’ tattoo gives them away, and a gunfight starts. In the confusion, Tobias, Tris, Susan and Caleb manage to escape, and they head to Candor. Upon arrival Tris and Tobias are subjected to truth serum, where they have to tell the truth to any question asked. When she goes under, Tris blurts out her darkest secret…

She killed Will.

What happens now?

This book was pretty good, though it did get very confusing at one point, and I had to read it a few times before it made sense. Definitely not as good as Divergent, but it’s worth a read.

 

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DIVERGENT by Veronica Roth

First of the Divergent trilogy by Veronica RothDivergent by Veronica Roth.

Written in POV of sixteen-year-old girl Beatrice Prior, in a dystopian future where everybody is part of one of five factions, each said to believe in a different reason the world is so corrupted, and they try to fix that problem. The factions are:

  1. Candor: Here they believe dishonesty is the main problem, and are all supposed to never tell a lie. Faction Colors: Black and White
  2. Amity: They believe unkindness corrupted the world, and are all very kind. Faction Colors: Red and Yellow.
  3. Eritude: Here they believe that knowledge is the most important thing. Faction Color: Blue.
  4. Dauntless: They believe weakness is the main problem, so they train to be strong. Faction Color: Black.
  5. Abnegation: Here they believe in selflessness being the best quality. Faction Color: Gray.

Beatrice is a part of Abnegation, where she has been raised to be quiet and selfless, always putting others’ needs before her own. Beatrice believes that she is not good at this, and in a week she will have her Choosing Ceremony. The Choosing Ceremony is when the sixteen-year-olds of every faction come together, and they can choose a different faction to stay in for the rest of their lives. To help them decide whether they want to change factions or not, they all have to do an aptitude test to show which factions the sixteen-year-olds have an aptitude for. Beatrice is terrified of going for her aptitude test, and when she completes it, she gets the shock of her life:

She is DIVERGENT.

Her examiner, Tori, tells her this means she has aptitude for three factions, not one: Abnegation, Eritude and Dauntless. Tori explains that this is extremely dangerous and that she shouldn’t tell anybody. Beatrice is confused, but agrees.

Beatrice chooses her faction at the Choosing Ceremony, and her choice shocks everyone, as does her brother, Caleb’s choice- he chose Eritude.

In order to reach her new faction, Beatrice has to do things like get onto a moving train, and also jump into a really deep hole. Beatrice is the first jumper, and when asked what her name is by an instructor,

“A new place, a new name. I can be remade here.

Tris’ 

Tris is soon settled into her new faction, with its exhausting training and tough work. She makes new friends and soon forgets the fact that she is Divergent. But when she learns that her faction leaders are looking for the Divergent and will try to kill them, she realizes how dangerous her Divergence is…

This is one of the best books I have read. It’s amazing, and I read it cover to cover in an hour! It’s good for ages 11-14. The only problem I have with it is the beginning is slightly slow, and the ending is a bit predictable. But otherwise, it’s awesome!!

Next in the trilogy: Insurgent

 

@EeshaGrover – Reviewers twitter handle

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