Review: Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Danger and betrayal, secrets and enchantment in the breathtaking conclusion to the Infernal Devices trilogy

Tessa Gray should be happy - aren't all brides happy?

Yet as she prepares for her wedding, a net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute.

A new demon appears, one linked by blood and secrecy to Mortmain, the man who plans to use his army of pitiless automatons, the Infernal Devices, to destroy the Shadowhunters. Mortmain needs only one last item to complete his plan. He needs Tessa. And Jem and Will, the boys who lay equal claim to Tessa's heart, will do anything to save her.


This is a spoiler review. For the non-spoiled review on my Goodreads account, click here

I'm not going to lie, I have been more excited about this series since COFA and then COLS turned out to be a huge disappointment. 

I also don't think I'll ever read another Cassandra Clare book again? Why? Because Clockwork Princess has proven that there is no originality left in the Shadowhunter world for Clare to use. Yes, Clockwork Angel and Prince have high 4/5 star reviews and I won't lower them. Those two books were the height of this series and the most original.

Because I need to get it off my chest, I'm discussing spoilers. Don't click show spoilers if you don't want to be spoiled. Just keep reading.

Clockwork Princess is the basically COG in Jonathon's POV. Why do I say that? Because the big identity problem here was that Tessa didn't know what she was and it turns out she has demon blood and her mother was an unmarked Shadowhunter.

Seriously?! Three books for that?

That was Valentine's goal--to breed a Shadowhunter with demon blood to open the gates and take over. That is also the goal of our bad guy (whose name I cannot remember).

I feel so cheated. I feel like this series has been an entire cash cow from the beginning.

My other big problem is the massive contradiction Clare set herself up with. It's explained that the "offspring of demons and shadowhunters are still-born" (pg 334) and that it worked with Tessa because "Shadowhunters were marked when children...Elizabeth Gray had not been" (pg 334). "I believed that the lack of runes on your mother meant that she could conceive a child who was half-demon, half-Shadowhunter" (pg 346).

If that is how you get a half-demon, half-Shadowhunter, then how the Hell was Jonathon not a still born child? Clary's mother was marked and a part of the circle when she had Jonathon.

Somebody, if you can explain this. Please do. I am fuming and so confused right now.
I also feel like Clare's writing was extremely uncontrolled. There were paragraphs upon paragraphs of endless descriptions that weren't really necessary. It made the story drag.

Another thing that made the story drag was the POV's. I spoke about this in COLS, but I have the feeling this will be repeated in her new Shadowhunter series, is that there were so many POV's. Literally everybody got their happy ending and had to have some sort of POV in each chapter. This book is over 500 pages long. That's just too much.

This is a small pet peeve, but I dislike how everyone got their happy ending. No, I'm not cruel. But there was a war. The only casualty was Henry losing his legs and I feel like that was put in because somebody had to have something happen.

The last point is probably the second most crucial point and that is the lack of tension and genuine threat. I posted about it as a status, but the main plan of the enemy was to destroy the Nephilim race.

This is the probably with prequels when they're evolved around "destroying Nephilim" is that we already know how it turned out because it's a prequel. Was Tessa's life ever in danger? No. How do I know? Because she was in COG so we always knew she would live. 

What Clockwork Princess had going for it was the romance tension. That's it. Tessa, in the end got the best of both worlds, and I'll admit that I was not in the least surprised by any of the developments. 
Some people suspected Will would join the Silent Brothers, but why would it be the healthy guy instead of Jem who was dying? Honestly. Somebody tell me that they had this pegged too. 

Overall, an extreme disappointment. I don't think I'll be interested in the new spin offs. There's no more originality left.

Rating: 2 stars
Series: Infernal Devices #3


  1. Oh thank god someone feels the same way. I stopped reading at pg 93 and I skimmed through the rest, so you didn't spoil me!

    I don't like this book. But I, in contrast to you, don't like the romantic tension, because I don't like unfaithfulness and I hated that Tessa thought and dreamt of Will while being engaged to Jem. I just wanted her be honest, with herself, with the two boys, with everyone.

    Since I haven't yet read COLS (OMG Book 4 was so boring I don't know why I thought Book 5 would be better), I don't know what the new discovery was that allowed the happy ending to occur, but it was all very predictable and silly because in the end no one sacrificed anything.

    Anyways, thanks for your wonderful review :-)

    Shaheen @ Speculating on SpecFic.

    1. I originally wrote this on Goodreads where you can hide the spoilers but didn't want to edit them out on here, so yay! Haha.

      I feel like that's her strength in comparison to the other things, it really stands out because the other aspects weren't very well executed. The sex scene really threw me off. Will said on a number of occasions to Magnus that he could never be with Tessa because Jem was with her even after he died... Right. Lies!

      Oh, gosh don't. COLS is... *shudders* I have a morbid fascination with needing to know the ending for myself so I'll read Heavenly Fire for you if you want :P I'm just really annoyed about how now the series title "Mortal Instruments" doesn't really make sense anymore since books 4-6 have nothing to do with the cup, sword, or mirror unlike the first three.

      You're welcome! I'm so glad to find out that I'm not alone in this corner of really disliking this book :)


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