Thursday, January 30, 2014

Sloppy Seconds (#1): Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare

Welcome to Sloppy Seconds!  This is a new monthly feature hosted by myself and Teresa at 
Readers Live A Thousand Lives.  In this feature, Teresa and I will be buddy re-reading some of our most favorite books and then posting our thoughts and all our feels.  So sit back, relax, grab a glass of wine, and re-live some great reads with us!

Title: Clockwork Angel 
(The Infernal Devices #1)
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Published: August 31, 2010

Purchase: Amazon  |  B&N

From Goodreads:

In a time when Shadowhunters are barely winning the fight against the forces of darkness, one battle will change the course of history forever. Welcome to the Infernal Devices trilogy, a stunning and dangerous prequel to the New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments series.

The year is 1878. Tessa Gray descends into London’s dark supernatural underworld in search of her missing brother. 

She soon discovers that her only allies are the demon-slaying Shadowhunters—including Will and Jem, the mysterious boys she is attracted to. Soon they find themselves up against the Pandemonium Club, a secret organization of vampires, demons, warlocks, and humans. Equipped with a magical army of unstoppable clockwork creatures, the Club is out to rule the British Empire, and only Tessa and her allies can stop them....


Our Discussion

**WARNING: spoilers ahead**

Teresa Mary Rose
Okay, so you know me, can we just start with Will? I love him!

Michele Belle

We absolutely can... but I'm going to need you to prepare yourself for some major Jem swooning on my part. Will is so funny... and the snark... I adore his snark!!!

Teresa Mary Rose

Ohh the snark! That's why I love him so! The swoony moments are wonderful too, but it's the snark that gets me every time! And please Jem swoonage is needed! I love him too! I actually think I appreciated Jem more the second time around knowing the outcome of the series.

Michele Belle

Will keeps me on my toes, and I seriously love that about him. I want to hug him, shove him, snuggle him... and repeat. Now Wifey, you know I've always considered myself Team WillJem... love them both to pieces and was going to be heartbroken no matter what for one of these guys. But I have a huge confession: As soon as Jem entered the picture in our re-read... I squeeeed... and almost got emotional. Am I secretly Team Jem?

Teresa Mary Rose

Will excels at keeping people on their toes! And I really loved that for every stupid thing he did, this time around I knew the reason... which is why it broke my heart. A Jem squee? What is this? You may secretly be Team Jem... I know for me, I am still firmly Team Will but this time I loved Jem more immediately. I think the first time I read, my mind automatically rejected the introduction of a love triangle and conditioned me to brush Jem off in the beginning. Obviously, I grew to love Jem to pieces, but this time around I loved him showing up! Since we are talking about Will and Jem can we just talk about how their relationship is the most important in the entire series?

Michele Belle

I agree – knowing the reasons behind his actions made them all the more intriguing for me. Will’s just so complex, and I think it's obvious that he's struggling with some serious demons when you re-read this.

Sigh. I just may be. It's the sweetness. Jem is a beautiful soul. But let’s talk about how funny he is! I think his humor can be overshadowed by Will at times; but since I was apparently hanging on Jem's every word this time around, I found that he made me laugh A LOT.

Aaaahhh, the bromance. Hands down, my most favorite friendship of all my books. I feel like the parabatai relationship wasn't as evident in the Mortal Instruments series, and I am so moved by how much Jem and Will care for each other. That bond is beautiful!

I want to mention the brilliance of Cassandra Clare. The tie-ins to the Mortal Instruments series are amazing. It also answers questions I had about this world she created in such amazing detail. She kept it interesting without it being an information dump.

Teresa Mary Rose

Oh yes! Agreed! During the re-read it became so obvious that our poor Will is having some serious issues. I also didn't want to smack him when he whispered Cecily's name... cause now I know haha.

Oh Jem is so sweet... like a silver lollipop. And he is hysterical! He is a quiet humor though, where Will is loud and in your face about it. One of my favorite moments from Jem is when he compares Will to a headache - that cracked me up. And apparently this time I was allowed to laugh at Jem (my brain is weird).

Their bond is glorious! I feel like Will and Jem are a special parabatai and are closer than most. Jace and Alec are close but it was nothing compared to these two... and when you think about it Luke and Valentine were parabatai at one point, and Jem and Will would never have those issues. I feel like people focus so much on Will/Tessa or Jem/Tessa that Will/Jem gets overshadowed and for me that is the most important one... because nothing was going to come between them, not even Tessa.

The tie-ins kill me! I giggle like a crazy person every time one shows up. She does it so brilliantly and quietly. I also love seeing ancestors for some of my favorite TMI characters.

Michele Belle

I love the way Tessa SEES Will. She interprets his actions and words in a way that only Jem has ever been able to. The connections among these three characters are stunning.

A silver lollipop. Thank you. That will be referenced in all of our future conversations about Jem. I LOVE that moment (and your weird brain). I didn't remember Jem calling Will on so many of his antics, but he really did and it was hilarious!

These guys really embrace the old laws and what "parabatai" stands for. I feel as though some things have been forgotten through the years. No, Jem and Will would never find themselves in a predicament like Valentine and Luke. Jem and Will would willingly die for one another. It's true – this is a story as much about friendship as it is romance. Speaking of this particular triangle, I want to talk about one of my favorite moments: the "goodbye" on the steps. Will's reaction with those clenched fists by his sides was priceless and so eye-opening. It left no doubt on the reader's part about his true feelings.

The ancestors, the heirlooms... it all makes me incredibly giddy!

You know one of my favorite characters is Magnus Bane. He's delightful in this book. Especially at the end. I can never get enough of Magnus!!

However, with all the love we're throwing around... let's talk about my LEAST favorite character, Jessamine. I remember disliking her the first time around, but I truly didn't expect her to bug me as much knowing what we know now. Wrong. I cannot stand that little gutter snipe. The things that come out of her mouth make me see red.

Teresa Mary Rose

I love how Tessa can tell that Will is putting up a front and she is determined to break down his walls. But then at the end the ONE TIME I really need her to see through his words she doesn't! You are spot on... the connection between these three is incredible! How could Tessa not love both of them when Will and Jem are so close!

I didn't remember it either, but Jem doesn't let Will get away with anything! I also forgot that he sometimes went along with them, like in the infamous cannibal duck scene... that gets me every time!

They just don't make parabatai like Will and Jem anymore *sigh*. They emulate what it is to selflessly love someone else. Oh the "goodbye"! Will's reaction was so glaring the second time around! I was like OH SNAP!

You know Magnus is one of my favorites too! He always manages to steal whatever scene he is in! That was one of the things I really like about this series, was that we got to see Magnus at a different time.

You read my mind! Jessamine is a terrible person and I can't stand her! I honestly forgot how much I disliked her and how many stupid things she said. I don't feel bad for her at all, I really don't. She could have chosen to make the best out of her situation, but she didn't. She sat around and sulked and wanted everyone to treat her like a princess when she is not a princess, not even close.

While we are on the dislike subject, Mortmain! I forgot what a devious little jerk he is!

Michele Belle

Oh, that's so true! I suppose she was just so crushed that she couldn't see through it at the time. And he was VERY convincing. As much as I wanted to shake him for those careless words, I was very impressed with that delivery! My heart broke for them.

The duck scene. An all-time favorite! I had a serious and very embarrassing fangirl moment when Jace mentioned ducks in City of Lost Souls. Again with the brilliant tie-ins, Ms. Clare!

Oh, thank GOD. I was afraid you might have more generous feelings towards the little heifer. I do so love when we are on the same page. Kudos to Tessa for having the patience she did to put up with Jessie. You and I would have been looking for places to stuff her little body! And then we'd have thrown Nate in with her!

Mortmain – such an evil genius! What I love most about what Clare did with him was that she made him appear so ordinary and unsuspecting, but then BAM – he's vile and loathsome!!!! Almost made me feel sorry for de Quincey! And we can't forget about dear Camille... talk about being consistent from series to series. I still can't believe Magnus loved her. Maybe I'm just too Team Malec.

There are so many secondary characters to love! I adore Thomas, Agatha, Sophie – and the introduction to Church!! 

Teresa Mary Rose
I know, I know, he was very convincing! Although, I don't think I ever believed him, not even the first time around. But I know I have more information than Tessa does so I shall forgive her.

The duck scene will forever be one of my favorite literary moments haha. We are the same person! I loved when Jace shared his duck phobia in City of Lost Souls... it's a Herondale thing.

I love when we agree! Makes me smile. I don't know how Tessa did it honestly. I would have punched her and kicked her too for good measure. You are so right, we would have been hiding those bodies. Nate! Don't even get me started on Nate! *strangles Nate*

Yes! Mortmain is an awesome villain because he is vile but ordinary at the same time. Makes him worse somehow. Ehh I didn't feel sorry for de Quincey, he was still a jerk. Ohh Camille.... she needs to be stopped! I hate her... a lot.... she is responsible for my Malec heartache. I don't know what Magnus was thinking.

Church!!! I love that the cat has become such an important part of the series! And I adore Sophie! She is wonderful... although she needs to cut my Will some slack! And Thomas and Agatha *sobs*

Michele Belle

Not only is Tessa patient, but she's really easy to love. I adore her sharp wit, and her love for books melts me. This series has the BEST book quotes – actually, it has amazing quotes throughout, but the ones relating to books are like candy for readers and quote whores like us! Tessa – and of course Cassandra Clare – make me fall in love with this time period again. I want to break out the bustles and corsets!

Haha, oh, de Quincey... I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when Charlotte, Henry, and company showed up and he was truly clueless to their accusations. But yeah, he is a jerk; and though innocent of this particular wrongdoing, he was definitely guilty of 1,002 other crimes!

Camille IS responsible... and Magnus was clearly not thinking with his brilliant warlocky brain!

And for some reason, I didn't remember Jem single-handedly being responsible for our acquaintance with the finicky feline!

Thomas and Agatha. I really did fall apart more reading that a second time. I was very sad for Will. His guilt over his neglect of Thomas was heart-wrenching. I tear up just thinking about it – especially because Thomas never held it against him. He was such a kind person. I'm not even kidding – that part ruins me. It should come with a warning.

Teresa Mary Rose

Tessa is my favorite Cassie Clare heroine! She is just so strong and smart and witty and just a beautiful character. And you are so right! This book has THE BEST BOOK QUOTES EVER! I loved one of them enough to have it etched onto my skin permanently. I truly think any reader can appreciate this book on Will and Tessa's love of books alone.

Oh Wifey, you make me want things I didn't know I wanted... I would have loved to see a confused de Quincey! We need to write a memo to Cassie requesting this!

You know, I never thought of it that way and now that you brought that to my attention, I love Thomas even more! Oh my heart! It can't handle these books! The whole series should come with a warning: BEWARE, THIS BOOK WILL CAUSE AN EXTREME CASE OF THE FEELS. PROCEED WITH CAUTION.

Since we brought up quotes before... do we want to share our favorites now?

Michele Belle

Oh, yes, please. I'm going to do my very best to trim it down, but you should see how many I have... it's crazy.

"'One must always be careful of books,' said Tessa, 'and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.'"

"'Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry...'"

"'Thomas! We must away at once to the nearest brothel! I seek scandal and low companionship.'"

"'You think she's pretty?' ...'Yes, and you do too.' 'I hadn't noticed, really.' 'Yes, you have, and I've noticed you noticing.'"

"It's all right to love someone who doesn't love you back, as long as they're worth you loving them. As long as they deserve it."

Teresa Mary Rose

OH THE QUOTES! It is so easy to get carried away with quotes. I wanted to just highlight the entire book!!!

“One must always be careful of books," said Tessa, "and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.”

“Remember when you tried to convince me to feed a poultry pie to the mallards in the park to see if you could breed a race of cannibal ducks?" "They ate it too," Will reminisced. "Bloodthirsty little beasts. Never trust a duck.”

“Must you go? I was rather hoping you'd stay and be a ministering angel, but if you must go, you must." "I'll stay," Will said a bit crossly, and threw himself down in the armchair Tessa had just vacated. "I can minister angelically." "None too convincingly. And you're not as pretty to look at as Tessa is," Jem said, closing his eyes as he leaned back against the pillow. "How rude. Many who have gazed upon me have compared the experience to gazing at the radiance of the sun." Jem still had his eyes closed. "If they mean it gives you a headache, they aren't wrong.”

“Let me give you a piece of advice. The handsome young fellow who's trying to rescue you from a hideous fate is never wrong. Not even if he says the sky is purple and made of hedgehogs.”

"Tessa looked at him in disbelief. "What's my name?" "Don't you know it?" "You - you've come bursting into my room, scared me nearly to death, and now you demand to know my name? What on earth's your name? And who are you, anyway?" “My name is Herondale," the boy said cheerfully. "William Herondale, but everyone calls me Will. Is this really your room? Not very nice, is it?" He wandered toward the window, pausing to examine the stacks of books on her bedside table, and then the bed itself. He waved a hand at the ropes. "Do you often sleep tied to the bed?”"

Michele Belle

This book is so incredibly good. I think we made a wise choice for our first re-read. I have absolutely loved every second of sharing this book with you!!

Teresa Mary Rose

This was an excellent choice for our first re-read! It was wonderful and it was even better reading it the second time around with you! I can't wait to see what shenanigans we get into with our next re-read!

Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1) Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2) Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices, #3)

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