The Part Where I Admit I’m a Sucker…

July 4, 2012 at 2:04 am (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , )

…for any book cover featuring a gentleman in a top hat.

Title: Clockwork Angel

Author: Cassandra Clare

Publisher: McElderry Books

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Steampunk

Length: 478 pages

I am very skeptical when it comes to current popular young adult titles.  Anything published in the aftermath of the Twilight Saga makes me pretty inclined to doubt that the story will be anything but unequivocal crap.  In fact, when I first saw the covers of Cassandra Clare’s original series The Mortal Instruments (City of Ashes, City of Bones, etc.), I had no interest whatsoever in the nearly naked teens displayed on the front cover in all their thin, muscled perfection.  Clockwork Angel, on the other hand, the first in the prequel series The Infernal Devices taunted me for months.  This front cover is still shimmery and radiates young adult paranormal pop culture crap, but the teen isn’t naked, he’s in full on Victorian era attire, coat, top hat, the whole shebang.  I was torn.  How did they know they would suck me in like this?  How did Cassandra Clare know that this book was basically screaming at me: YOU, You pompous, self-righteous, book snob, YOU, try to NOT read THIS one!

I rebelled.  I refused.  It continuously called my name.  And if it hadn’t been for 1) S. Smith renewing my faith in *new* young adult fiction with Seed Savers and 2) Felix J. Palma enchanting me with a love hate relationship with The Map of Time (that a. ended in love and b. also featured a somewhat shiny top hatted man on the front cover), my rebellion would have won out and in turn I would have lost out.

Cassandra Clare, if you are reading this, I loved Clockwork Angel.  I didn’t want to, because I’m a book snob, but you won me over, with – of all things – book love.

Clockwork Angel is a little bit paranormal, a little bit steam punk, a whole lot of adventure, and even more book worship.  Clare’s characters are well read in all my Victorian and pre-Victorian favorites.  No matter how predictable or typical they behave, they win me over every time with their references to Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, A Tale of Two Cities, countless poets, and more.  The feelings are that of typical teens without over exaggerating the melodrama.  And the adventure and fight scenes are just down right fun.  How do you pass up automatons, vampires, warlocks, and gadgets?  You can’t, especially when its been so long since the vampires have actually been bad guys, not sparkling, cheesy love interests.  Thank you Clare, for putting those vamps in their place.  In Clockwork Angel we know they are bad guys, dangerous, but they don’t over run the story… it’s not entirely about them, they’re just part of the landscape… Thank God.

Now, of course, I have the entire Mortal Instruments series sitting on my end table to be read, despite their front covers.  I’m suckered, I’m hooked, I have to know the whole story.

End Note: I’d put Clare’s writing at about a 6th-7th grade level, content probably for a 14+ but I’d have no problem letting anyone younger read it because there’s nothing inappropriate or anything, it just might take a slightly older child to catch all the literature references.

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2 Comments

  1. Chia Baas said,

    Good day! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could locate a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding one? Thanks a lot!

    • Anakalian Whims said,

      I’m not really sure what a captcha plugin is. I don’t use any plugins – only widgets.

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