Format: Paperback, Collectors Ed.
Published by Walker Books, Ltd
First Published December 6, 2011 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa's powers for his own dark ends.I finished this a couple weeks ago and I procrastinated on this review. Probably because I'm not too sure how to review this one. I was super excited to finally pick this book up, since I thought the ending of Clockwork Angel, the first book, was actually really good and it must have been leading up to something. I think I was wrong, at least for the first half of the book. The first half of the book had me reading about them trying to find answers and getting nowhere in a spectacularly boring way and reading about Will and Tessa trying to deny their love for each other. Will was not very likeable and Tessa seemed like she was just mooching off of the Shadowhunters because I forgot why the bad guy was a bad guy. The villain just does not scare me whatsoever. It literally took me a month to read the first half of this book.
With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister's war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move and that one of their own has betrayed them.
Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will; the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?
As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.
The second half of the book, however, really did it for me. It swiftly came back up to par with what I know Clare to be capable of. Tessa finally proves that she is useful and deserving of the Shadowhunter's protection. I'm glad she came into her own finally! A lot of the characters really grew on me. Jem is so sweet and Will shows he has some depth. I was most happy of all to see Charlotte gain some confidence in herself. She's turning out to be a good character.
The action was thrilling and the information we learned was good (in the second half). It kept me turning the pages of the book I nearly chucked aside. The evil Mortmain, or whatever his name is, didn't make an appearance in this book and I seriously wonder why the Shadowhunters even care about catching him. Please remind me in the third book, Cassandra!
Yes, despite it all, I'll be reading the third book when it's released. The ending made up for it and Clare is a little trickster who makes me always want more! Curses! I still prefer the Mortal Instruments...