Friday, October 25, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 4: Chapter 19 - Epilogue

Week 4: Chapter 19 - Epilogue

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We are in the final week of reading Clockwork Angel and this is the final recap post, but you can see the others here. J and I will also be doing a video chat discussing the book that will be posted sometime this weekend.

In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 19
Tessa, Sophie, and Jessamine are safely in the Sanctuary. They rehash what just happened, and Sophie gets mad at Jessamine for just leaving Thomas. Then the girls hear Will at the door, and before Tessa can warn Jessamine not to open it, the door is opened and Mortmain, Nate, and some clockwork henchmen come inside. We switch perspectives for a short passage to the real Will, who is rushing through London to get back to the Institute. When he arrives, the doors are ajar which worries him greatly.

There is some discussion back in the Sanctuary, with Nate continuing to be despicable, and Mortmain instructs him to go get something from the weapon room. Then Mortmain sets his automatons to kill Sophie and Jessamine, but as they are doing so, Tessa begs for Mortmain to stop them, and he says he will if Tessa promises not to run. She does, and the other two girls are taken out of the Sanctuary, leaving just Tessa and Mortmain alone. Back with Will, he enters the Institute to find Agatha dead, and then he finds Thomas, almost dead. After Thomas passes, Will is angry and grieving and heads to the Sanctuary.

Tessa and Mortmain begin discussing the situation, and Mortmain hands her a watch and tells her to change into the person it belonged to, someone with the initials J.T.S. Tessa refuses and Mortmain threatens to bring the other girls back in and kill them, but Tessa finds Jessamine's knife and turns it upon herself. Back downstairs in the Institute, Jem arrives and is looking for Will when Jessamine and Sophie, being held by automatons, and Nate, holding the Pyxis, appear on the stairs. Jem tries to reason with Nate, but it is no use and Nate has the automatons go after Jem. In the middle of the fighting, Henry and Charlotte arrive, and when the automatons are defeated, they realize Nate and the Pyxis are gone. The group decides to go after Will, who they figure is going after Tessa.

Back in the Sanctuary, Tessa demands answers about her lineage and why Mortmain, who is just a mundane, had her created. We learn some interesting details, such as Tessa's mother didn't know she was cheating on her husband (the shape-changing demon Eidolon perhaps?), and that her mother may have not been entirely human, though she was unaware of it if she wasn't. Mortmain also says that "warlock" is the best word for what Tessa is, and that her existence had been planned before Mortmain was involved. Tessa orders him to get out, but he doesn't believe she will stab herself, and Mortmain calls her bluff. Tessa remembers something Will told her about the warrior woman Boadicea and how she killed herself to keep from being captured by the Romans, and then Tessa stabs herself in the chest.

Will arrives in the Sanctuary to find Mortmain standing over Tessa, blood everywhere. Will accuses Mortmain of killing her, but Mortmain tells him what happened and says that he grieves Tessa's loss more then Will ever could. Will says that his despair will be temporary, but before Will can kill Mortmain, Mortmain vanishes into thin air. Baffled, Will goes to Tessa and finds her alive. She explains that she changed into a murder victim that, when she had done it before, had gotten blood everywhere, so she turned away so Mortmain couldn't see her change, but she did it just long enough to get the blood to come pouring out, and then she acted dead. We have Will ending the chapter by thinking he has lost everything, which I think is because he has truly fallen in love with Tessa, and that because he knows or suspects how Jem feels about Tessa, Will's own feelings are a tragedy to him.

Chapter 20
We start this final chapter with Tessa thinking about the rituals of Shadowhunter funerals, how they wear white clothes and red runes. Tessa was not allowed to go to the funeral, and she thinks that because the whole situation was because of her and because she is a Downworlder, they are going to tell her to leave when the Nephilum return from the funeral. When they do return, Charlotte tells Tessa that she wants Tessa to stay and there is nothing against the Law about having a Downworlder stay as a guest at the Institute. Charlotte and Henry are expecting to be in lots of trouble about the whole thing, but Charlotte thinks having Tessa on her side will help.

Then Tessa goes to find Will, and he is on the roof of the Institute. She starts talking to him about the good news, and she expresses her growing feelings for him. They share a passionate kiss and embrace, and then Will says they need to discuss their arrangements since Tessa is staying. Tessa doesn't understand. Will explains that because Jem comes in and out of Will's room, Jem would find it odd if the door were locked, so Tessa's room would probably be best. Tessa still doesn't understand, so he goes on to say that it is obviously what Tessa wanted, because a Shadowhunter and Downworlder can have nothing more serious than a dalliance, as he calls it. Tessa is angry and offended, and Will goes on to say that she can't fear having a kid ("the unwanted consequence of a dalliance") because Warlocks cannot have children. Tessa did not know this and is shocked. Will, obviously, knew she did not know, and again, here we see the Herondale calculated cruelty. Seriously, does anyone with the name Herondale ever just come out and say what they mean and mean what they say? Upset, Tessa flees the roof and Will.

Tessa is hiding in the music room, reading over a portion of the Codex that she hadn't read before, about Warlocks and their infertility. However, Church wanders in and is followed by Jem. Jem instantly knows something is wrong and asks Tessa. She is surprised he recognized her sadness (but he did because he loves her - or is falling for her at the very least). She shows him the book and they discuss some of the things Mormtain said. Tessa wonders that since her mom probably knew that Tessa was not a human child, how could she have loved Tessa? Jem says that obviously Tessa's parents hid her from Mortmain, so they did love her. Then Jem goes on to make a case for how Tessa should consider the Shadowhunters in the Institute her family, that they are all orphans but that doesn't mean they need to be alone. Then Jem questions Tessa again on what is wrong, knowing it wasn't all about the infertility thing. She tells him that Will basically said he doesn't want her at the Institute, and Jem replies that Will, like all family, is difficult. Jem also says that though Tessa may feel inhuman, the right man will not care (aww, Jem, you are so my favorite). Tessa doesn't get to reply because there is a tapping at the window. Jem opens it and Tessa's clockwork angel flies inside and goes lifeless again, readyto go back around Tessa's neck. 

We are shown Magnus Bane in Camille's house. Camille has not returned yet despite de Quincey having been dispatched. Magnus is questioning why Camille was in a relationship with him, but whatever the reason, he wants to see her again and staying at her place gives him the best chance. Camille's longtime subjugate comes to tell Magnus that a Shadowhunter is there to see him. Magnus expects it to be Charlotte because Magnus has been helping them clean up the aftermath of Mortmain and de Quincey, but he is told it is a man who is soaked through due to the rain. Magnus goes to meet the visitor and it is Will. Magnus asks if anything else has happened, but Will says no, he is there because Will needs Magnus's help. Will seems completely desperate, and the book closes with Magnus asking Will what the problem is.

My verdict now:
I rather enjoyed Clockwork Angel. There were some issues, but overall I came away entertained and loving some of the characters (okay, Jem mostly). I like how the arc of the book was finished but that there are still questions, and I am dying to know what Will is going to ask Magnus. Good thing we (J and I) are going to be doing the readalong of Clockwork Prince next! It will begin in November, so look for the announcement!

Also check back this weekend for a video chat about Clockwork Angel and my official review!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 4: Chapter 16 - Chapter 18

Week 4: Chapter 16 - Chapter 18

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We are in the last week of reading Clockwork Angel! Check out our reading schedule here, and all my recap posts here.
In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 16
At the end of chapter 15, Nate was found missing from his room, so when this chapter starts, all the residents of the Institute are searching for him. Thomas finds him hiding in a room behind some curtains. When Tessa goes to talk to him, he is under the impression that Tessa is being held captive by the Shadowhunters, but she explains the situation. Food and blankets are brought and all the Shadowhunters gather to hear what Nate has to say about de Quincey, aka the Magister. Everything they thought about de Quincey turns out to be true. Nate tells them where he thinks de Quincey is hiding and tells them what he knows of de Quincey's plan. It turns out, after Jem goes and does a little research, that the night de Quincey needs to perform the binding spell that will tie the demon energies to the automatons is the night of the full moon, which will be that night. After reading Nate's ordeal and how he got into the mess, I like him a lot less. And despite Nate's assertion that de Quincey is the Magister, I still feel like someone else is pulling the strings, like de Quincey is telling everyone he is the Magister because the true Magister told him to. De Quincey just doesn't seem like a mastermind to me.

Chapter 17
After they find all this stuff out, the Shadowhunters rush around to get prepared. The Enclave (which I've since figured out is the council of London Shadowhunters) is going to go after de Quincey, but the "children" - Will and Jem - will be left behind because of their age. Tessa stays with Nate and Jessamine in the drawing room, fretting, while the two of them play cards. Then there is a knock (not a knock but it has the same effect) on the door of the Institute. Tessa looks out the window to see Will and Jem talking with Mortmain, and she goes to investigate.

Outside, Mortmain is saying that he wanted to do a favor for Charlotte and Henry since they kept his name from the Enclave about his involvement with de Quincey, so he is there to share some information and then leave the city while the big business goes down. He says that de Quincey has the Dark Sisters (one brought back via necromancy) working on the binding spell in a different location from de Quincey, and if they succeed, the Enclave will be walking into a massacre. Mortmain expresses his regret to Tessa that he ever introduced her parents to the Shadow World and then let her brother disappear into it as well. Mortmain leaves and then Will and Jem decide that even if Mortmain's information was inaccurate, it is too risky to ignore it. They prepare to leave, with Tessa wanting to go but being told to stay behind by Will, and Jem seems to agree.

Will and Jem take a carriage to the Dark Sisters location, which is a bit of a travel, but before they go Jem says, "Mizpah," to Tessa. He told her earlier that Shadowhunters never say goodbye or good luck before a battle, so he says the ancient word because it is a sort-of goodbye but not a goodbye, and he kisses her hand. The looks on Will's and Sophie's faces are the same for once, obviously because Sophie loves Jem and Will loves Tessa. When Tessa returns to the house, she is inside for just a bit when the door swings open again and clockwork automatons are standing there. They stab Agatha, killing her, and push their way in. Sophie says only Shadowhunters are able to open the door, and Tessa realizes that the front automaton was from the night she and Jem were attacked and that it still has Jem's blood on its metal hands.

We leave Tessa to go where Will and Jem are arriving at the location where the Dark Sisters are supposed to be. They break their way inside and see that the place looks old and unused. Then the hear some awful singing and before long, Mrs. Dark descends the stairs. They don't attack each other right away because Mrs. Dark is holding Mrs. Black's head. The pair asks why she has her sister's head and Mrs. Dark says she was in the middle of bringing her back with necromancy. Will and Jem accuse her of working the binding spell for the Magister, de Quincey, at which Mrs. Dark bursts out laughing and calls them a pair of fools.

Chapter 18
This next chapter flips between Tessa at the Institute and Will and Jem with Mrs. Dark. We start back at the Institute, and the automatons have stopped moving and Thomas, Jessamine, and Nate have come downstairs to see what the commotion was. As they are standing there, Mortmain reveals himself (I was not expecting that). Mortmain praises Nate for having done well and Nate goes to Mortmain and bowing like Mortmain is his king and calls Mortmain the Magister (I did not expect this either).

Back with Jem and Will, the pair is confused and Mrs. Dark says they are stupid and walking dead men because de Quincey is not the Magister. Will leaps at her but she throws her sisters head, and then the two chase her into another part of the house.

Back at the Institute, there is a lot of disbelief and talk, and then Thomas and Jessamine are fighting the automatons. One gets hold of Tessa, but her clockwork angel charm on her necklace comes to life, the wings slicing the creature, releasing Tessa. Jessamine reaches for Tessa to protect her and Mortmain commands one of the things to take out Jessamine, all the while Nate is standing aside laughing at the spectacle (I really hate him now). Jessamine is knocked down and out, and Thomas yells for Sophie and Tessa to run to the Sanctuary, and they do so.

Back with Will and Jem, they arrive in a large room that looks like it was being used for necromancy, but Jem says that is all it was being used for, not for the binding spell. There is a grotesque statue there, but it turns out that it is Mrs. Dark in her true form, ensconced in a protective circle. Mrs. Dark reveals that she is Eidolon, a demon with shape-changing powers (Tessa's demon parent maybe?) and that Mrs. Black was a warlock. Jem and Will try to question the demon, but it refuses to tell them anything, but Will figures out that the Magister is Mortmain, and then they piece out that Nate was working with Mortmain. Mrs. Dark is about to kill them to get back in Mortmain's good graces, so Will cuts down a large chandelier hanging over the protective circle, and they escape the house.

Back at the Institute, Tessa and Sophie reach the Sanctuary, but Sophie doesn't have the key, so she runs to get it. While waiting, Nate shows up and talks to Tessa, explaining that he gets power and knowledge for helping Mortmain obtain Tessa. Nate doesn't know or care why Mortmain wants her, but it is clear he is not sorry for putting her through all of this. Nate also reveals that the reason their Aunt Harriet died was because he sent poisoned chocolates to them, knowing Tessa would not eat them but that Aunt Harriet would (Nate is now officially at the top of my villains-I-hate list. I knew he wasn't a great person, but I never imagined this). Then Jessamine sneaks up behind Nate and knocks him out, and Sophie arrives with the key and they lock themselves in the Sanctuary.

To end the chapter, we are back with Will and Jem. Jem is having a hard time breathing, his demon powder wearing off quicker than they expected (btw, he also picked up a cage with a gray cat in it, so hello Church!). Will cuts a horse free from the carriage, saying it will be faster that way, and before Jem can protest, Will races off to the Institute.

My verdict so far:
I was glad we finally got Nate's story, even if it did turn out to be hogwash. The action and forward plot movement escalated pretty quickly, and while it might have been a bit rushed, I was so caught up in it that I didn't really care. And what twists! I'm not the kind of reader who tries to figure every little thing out, so I was caught almost completely off guard by the true Magister and Nate's involvement. I did have an inkling that the real Magister was someone other than de Quincey, but I didn't suspect Mortmain. Nate's true nature was the biggest shock of all. I'm also glad we get to see Church's origins and finally find out something new about the clockwork angel. Only a little left until it's all over!

Check back tomorrow for recaps of the final chapters and the epilogue!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 3: Chapter 14 - Chapter 15

Week 3: Chapter 14 - Chapter 15

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We are continuing to read Clockwork Angel through October. It's still not too late to join us, whether you've never read the series or are a TID old hat! Check out our reading schedule here. [Also, sorry I'm a bit late with this. Had a big book trip and company last week and got behind on the blogging. ^_^]

In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 14
We pick up right where we left off in Chapter 13, with Jem leading Tessa to his favorite spot. They go through the city, with Jem showing her things, like a Downworlder tavern, until they arrive at a bridge. They are having a pretty deep conversation, and I'm loving every minute because JEM. They talk about Will, which I'm like, of course they do, but why does Will have to harsh my OTP? (okay, not really. I love Jem but I'm not sold that Tessa is his perfect match.) And we learn a little more about Jem, and he calls Tessa human (saying that she is human in all the important ways), but then another couple is on the bridge, and Tessa and Jem turn to leave. Turns out the two people are the Dark Sisters' coachman and another automaton. They attack and we hear some more weird stuff like we heard from Miranda before. Jem defeats the two assailants but then sees that there are more headed for them, so he and Tessa run. The problem is, despite his Shadowhunter blood, Jem tires out pretty quickly, having to do with his mysterious illness no doubt. They make it to the Institute but can't get inside because Jem can't stand up and let them in (Tessa can't do it because she doesn't have Shadowhunter blood).

The group of automatons have followed them and have broken through the gate and are upon them. They attack Jem, and Tessa tries to defend them with his cane, which gets broken pretty quickly. But the rest of the Shadowhunters come to their rescue and they destroy most of the creatures with only a couple escaping. Will goes to Jem immediately when it is clear he is not okay and everyone goes inside.

Chapter 15
When Tessa is inside, she checks on Jem's status with Sophie, who says he should be okay, and then she is questioned by Henry and Charlotte about what happened. They discuss the automatons and that they were sent by de Quincey as a declaration of war, and that they were better and faster than previous ones Tessa had seen. Then Will arrives and tells Tessa that Jem wants to talk to her. When they get to Jem's room, Will makes it known that he doesn't think Jem should tell Tessa what he is about to tell her, but Jem wants to and Will leaves.

Jem proceeds to tell Tessa about his family and how he came to be at the London Institute. I knew from earlier portions of the book that his parents had been killed by a demon, but the story was much worse than that, and I wasn't expecting that Jem's illness was from being tortured by the demon. I thought it was very interesting how much his affliction did compare with opium addiction and I commend Clare for using that to tie in the time period with the Shadow World. I also really liked all that Jem had to say about his condition, considering the fact that the demon poison makes him feel better but is also slowly killing him. Tessa is, of course, unhappy about this. They have a sweet little exchange about just meeting each other yet having some kind of strong feeling regarding each other. Then Will comes in and ruins everything and Tessa leaves.

A couple things happen after that, one of which Tessa realizes that Sophie is in love with Jem. Then Tessa goes and checks on her brother and finds that he, and Jessamine who is still at his bedside, have fallen asleep. Then she goes to bed and has a weird dream and is woken up by Sophie. At some point during the night, Nate has gone missing.

My verdict so far:
I really liked how much Jem I got in these chapters. One thing I've realized I've begun worrying about in this book is if the story is going to stall, but so far, for every dip, there's a rise in action soon after, so that's good. I am starting to get a little annoyed at Tessa always being the damsel in distress though. I know that she has absolutely no combat training, but it doesn't seem as if she can really think on her feet, aside from grabbing something and swinging it around. At the very least she should have the self-preservation instinct to run, but she doesn't. She seemed to have more of it at the beginning of the book but it feels lost now. Other than that, I'm excited to see where things go next!

Check back later this week for recaps of the last chapters of the book!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 3: Chapter 11 - Chapter 13

Week 2: Chapter 6 - Chapter 8

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We are continuing to read Clockwork Angel through October. It's still not too late to join us, whether you've never read the series or are a TID old hat! Check out our reading schedule here. [Also, sorry I'm a bit late with this. Had a big book trip and company last week and got behind on the blogging. ^_^]

In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 11
One of the things that I have consistently enjoyed in Cassandra Clare's books is her fight scenes. This one begins with Tessa realizing the prisoner is Nate, and then screaming at Will to use Henry's invention to call the Shadowhunters. Will does so, vampires already coming at him, but the invention doesn't work properly and every flame in the room shoots up and things and vampires catch fire. Magnus Bane tries to keep Tessa from reentering the room, but she gets away from him. Tessa reaches Will to tell him that the it is Nate on the stage and the Shadowhunters break their way into the room. De Quincey tries to talk himself out of the fight, saying the mundane (Nate) also broke covenant law, (but the Law does not govern mundanes), but when he realizes he won't be able to, the fighting really gets going. The fighting goes on and on all around, but Tessa is able to make it Nate on the stage. Then Tessa is attacked by de Quincey, who calls her names because he still thinks she is Camille, and when Tessa goes to respond, it is Camille who speaks. Then de Quincey is about to kill her when Will steps in, and the two fight. Will is about to be killed by de Quincey, so Will bites the vampire, which makes him let go. Tessa is able to shoot de Quincey in the shoulder, but he flees and gets away.

When the fight is over, Henry gets Nate out of the chair. All the vampires, minus de Quincey, are dead, along with only two Shadowhunters. They try to clean Nate up a bit, but he is completely out of it, and while Tessa is seeing to him, she sees Charlotte basically yelling at Papa Lightwood (whose name is actually Benedict). Tessa also watches as the Shadowhunters do healing runes on each other. There is then a conversation about who will get back to the Institute in what carriage, and it is decided that Tessa and Nate would go with Charlotte and Henry because Nate had been drugged and bitten. So Will goes out to get in the carriage with Jem, and while he is cleaning blood off of him, he is approached by Gabriel Lightwood. They have another of their spats and Will is about to say something extremely rude but is yanked into the coach by Jem. He and Jem have a conversation on their way back home. At first they talk about Tessa, who it turns out they both think is pretty, and then it turns to Will's guilt over killing one of the human subjugates who had attacked him during the battle. Jem tries to comfort him on it. I will just have to say again that, despite Will having that wit that is funny and vicious at times which certainly draws you in, I love love love Jem. I like how cool and collected he is and how his wit is just as sharp yet he is definitely kinder than Will.

At the end of the chapter we see Tessa with Nate, Charlotte, and Henry in the first coach, and Nate comes to just long enough to ask Tessa, or Tessie, as he calls her, not to leave him. This makes Tessa upset and she tries not to cry in front of the others.

Chapter 12
Nate is put in a room much like Tessa's and Tessa sits with him, trying to ask him questions, but he is still out of it. Then Charlotte arrives with Brother Enoch, and Nate flips out at the sight of the Silent Brother. Charlotte and Brother Enoch have to convince Tessa to let them help Nate. Unlike Tessa, Brother Enoch says, Nate is completely human and could likely die without their help. So Tessa agrees and then runs out of the room. 

She is out in the hallway and hits the wall to clear her head, and Jem sees her and they have a short conversation about Nate's humanity and the Silent Brothers. Then Charlotte appears, saying Brother Enoch has helped Nate a lot but there is still a lot to do, so she suggests the Tessa goes to bed, and then asks to talk to Jem. As Tessa is on her way to her room, she runs into Sophie, who has been trying to get Will to take his medicine but is having no luck. Tessa says she will try and heads up to the attic where Will is. She hears Will say the name Cecily (and I think that might be Gabriel Lightwood's sister, but I don't know yet) and then she enters the room. Tessa doesn't really understand what the medicine, which is actually holy water, is for, so Will explains that because he ingested vampire blood, he has to drink the holy water to burn the demon disease out of him.

They then get into a pretty intense conversation, Tessa asking why Will makes fun of everything but never laughs, and what he cares about, and he asks her what she wants from him. They end up kissing, and when they break apart Will says, "God in Heaven, what was that?" which makes me think two things are possible: either there was some kind of shock in their kiss that relates to what Tessa is, or Will actually felt a pang of love or something like that. Either way, Will makes a mess of things by telling Tessa to leave, that he can't do this, which I think has something to do with Jem. Will actually begs her to leave, which makes Tessa hurt and confused.

The chapter ends with Tessa back in her room, tired and crying, pondering her very first kiss and how it was nothing she expected it to be.

Chapter 13
When Tessa wakes up, Sophie is in her room and tells Tessa that she slept most of the day away. They get into a discussion about Will. Tessa still does not understand why Sophie hates Will, but we still don't find that out. All Sophie ends up saying is that there is something dark in Will, something twisted and rotten, some secret that is eating him up. Then Tessa goes to check on her brother and finds Jessamine reading to him. It is pretty clear what Jessamine is after - maybe, if Nate finds her at his sickbed taking care of him, he, a mundane, will fall in love with her and take her away from the Shadowhunter world. Tessa says that Nate doesn't have any money, and Jessamine responds that she has money enough for them both. I think Tessa feels a little slighted because Jessamine has replaced Tessa in her plan with Nate. Tessa leaves to find the others.

She comes upon them talking in a room and is about to enter when she overhears her own name. She listens at the door, hearing Will exclaiming that they should probe Nate's brain for information, that he is nothing but a mundane, and says some insulting things about Nate. Jem, uncharacteristically angry, defends Nate. Then Will goes on to insult Henry and Charlotte and says some hurtful things. Will is about to say that if Charlotte is too sentimental to probe Nate's brain, then...but Tessa storms in, having heard enough. She goes off on the whole group, accidentaly hurting Charlotte's feelings when she meant to be hurting Will's. He is acting angry at Tessa and Tessa is outraged, especially because of what happened between them the previous night. Tessa finally tells them all to stay away from her brother and storms out.

Tessa winds up on the church steps outside, and Jem joins her. He tries to cheer her up and they end up talking about how Tessa feels about all that's happened, and he admits that Shadowhunters tend to have a very narrow view of the world. He also says Tessa is right when she says that Will didn't mean what he said about hurting Nate, and she asks if Jem is ever angry with Will. Jem says of course, but that he controls himself by going to his favorite place. The chapter ends with Jem leading Tessa away to his favorite spot in London.

My verdict so far:
I enjoyed the big fight and I really want to know who Cecily is. I'm loving the scenes with Tessa and the boys individually, and I'm kind of hope that Jessamine and Nate do become a thing. I also hope that Nate's sickness doesn't get dragged out so we can find out what he knows about de Quincey soon. Also, I was waiting for the Herondale Overblown Jerk Gene to appear, and now we've seen it.

Check back soon for recaps of Chapters 14 and 15!

Monday, October 21, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 2: Chapter 9 - Chapter 10

Week 2: Chapter 9 - Chapter 10

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We are continuing to read Clockwork Angel through October. It's still not too late to join us, whether you've never read the series or are a TID old hat! Check out our reading schedule here. [Also, sorry I'm a bit late with this. Had a big book trip and company last week and got behind on the blogging. ^_^]

In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 9
We start this chapter with Tessa practicing being Lady Belcourt, with Will and Jem helping/watching. I really enjoy the three of them together, especially the brotherly banter between Will and Jem. We finally get our first mention of those dastardly Hyde Park ducks as well. While Tessa is practicing, they talk of what she feels while being Camille, and she mentions that she usually gets the feelings/thoughts of the person, but she hasn't gotten much of Camille's yet. Jem ponders if Tessa changed into his deceased father, if she could tell what he was thinking when he died, which alarms Will, which was interesting to see since Will is rarely serious about anything.

They are interrupted by the Enclave arriving, which is some council of Shadowhunters. We see some Lightwoods, and when Gabriel Lightwood, a Shadowhunter not much older than Will, arrives, it is clear he and Will have some bad blood. When the three "children" are told to leave, Gabriel follows them out and he and Will get into a big argument that involves name-calling and insults. It is funny except for how serious Gabriel is about the whole thing. We also get a hint of what other Shadowhunters think is wrong with Jem (they believe he is addicted to opium). Finally, Papa Lightwood interrupts to get Gabriel back to the meeting. Will leads Jem and Tessa somewhere, and while they are walking, Tessa is asking questions, like what a parabati is and why Gabriel hates Will (has to do with Gabriel's sister, of course) and so forth. They arrive at a storage room where they huddle together over the floor. Will does a rune that makes the floor transparent and allows them to see and hear the meeting going on below.

In the meeting, Charlotte is explaining the vampire situation and the plan, and different Shadowhunters are giving their opinions. We find out that Charlotte is only twenty-three, and that one of the council members is her aunt. Henry arrives late with one of his inventions that will allow Will and Tessa to summon the other Shadowhunters during the vampire party. The council finally agrees that they need to go through with the plan, and then Henry demonstrates his invention, which knocks all the lights out, ending the chapter.

Chapter 10
This chapter is all about the vampire party. We start out with Will and Tessa in the coach on their way to de Quincey's and they are discussing some last minute things, like how Will won't speak unless instructed, which is funny because it's Will. Tessa seems to have gotten the hang of impersonating a vampire, but Will explains that if she can't keep up with the vampires at the party to not say anything, as one wrong social situation could get them killed. This makes Tessa more nervous, but then they get on the subject of literature and begin quoting books to each other, causing Tessa to see some vulnerability in Will she hadn't seen before. Then they arrive and Camille laughs in Tessa's head, so Tessa is a little relieved that she can finally tap into Camille's personality. I'm not quite sure how this all works with the person in Tessa's head bit, but Camille (at least the Camille that Tessa is impersonating) seems to have more control over Tessa than anyone Tessa has become in the past. I don't think the actual Camille, who is hiding out somewhere while this is all going down, is actually doing anything regarding Tessa.

Once inside, they see the grand, candlelit house and all the vampires and their subjugates milling around. Tessa is looking for Nathaniel while the Camille in her head is giving her names of the vampires and instructions on how to act. Then de Quincey appears, greets Tessa/Camille, and then starts to eye Will like he is a particularly appetizing steak. Tessa gets a flash of Camille's memories and comes up with something to keep de Quincey from biting Will. De Quincey departs, seeming to not notice that Camille is not Camille, and Magnus Bane arrives. YAY! I remember liking Magnus in The Mortal Instruments but he comes through much more here and I loved it. He brings Tessa and Will to a library adjacent to the ritual room used for de Quincey's human killing and they are able to peek in to see what he means. While in the library, Magnus talks about Tessa's power, says she is a warlock even if she doesn't have a demon mark, and then they discuss de Quincey's plan. They find some blueprints for automatons and there is a spell on them that binds demon energy into objects, so Will takes the blueprints and stuffs them in his coat.

Next, the trio leaves the library and enters the "ceremony" room. They find seats and de Quincey appears on the stage, next to a chair that has manacles for its victim's hands and feet. De Quincey makes a speech about how they, the vampires, will not be controlled by Shadowhunters or their Law. Then they bring out, as de Quincey describes him, a traitor of the vampires. The man has a hood over his face and he has obviously been beaten, and he is shackled to the chair. The other vampires cry out death and de Quincey slashes a thin mark across his throat, drawing blood. This is the point when Will can call the other Shadowhunters, and he is about to, while Magnus is trying to get Tessa out of the room, when the hood is ripped off the prisoner and it turns out to be Nate.

My verdict so far:
It was good to see some other Shadowhunters and see some of the families that are the ancestors of those in TMI. The vampire party plan was one I was not thinking would work at all because it seemed like one of those crazy plans that is bound to go wrong, but it worked pretty well. I was super happy to see Magnus and I hope we get to see more of him.

Check back later this week for recaps of Chapters 11 through 15!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 2: Chapter 6 - Chapter 8

Week 2: Chapter 6 - Chapter 8

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We are continuing to read Clockwork Angel through October. It's still not too late to join us, whether you've never read the series or are a TID old hat! Check out our reading schedule here. [Also, sorry I'm a bit late with this. Had a big book trip and company last week and got behind on the blogging. ^_^]

In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 6
This chapter starts off with Will and Jem returning to the Dark House. We see more of their relationship through their conversation, and we get our first mention of "demon pox." They find one of the automatons and plan to take it back to the Institute. I want to add here that any time Jem is in a scene, it only makes me love him more.

Next we go back to Tessa and Jessamine on their shopping outing. They have decided to visit a park, and Jessamine has a proposition for Tessa - that they get their own place together and live like happy, normal girls of the time. We get to see here that Jessamine has the typical views of women for the time period, which is off-putting for me as a feminist but still somewhat understandable. But before Tessa can answer Jessamine's proposition, they come across a creature, who turns out to be a goblin. Because they've wandered off the path, the goblin doesn't care about any Accords and attacks them. Jessamine springs into action, using her parasol which is actually part weapon because it was made by Henry. When the goblin begs for mercy, Jessamine has a sort of fit and keeps beating it until it is dead. Tessa finally stops her, and Jessamine realizes what she has done and is horrified. When they return to the Institute, Jessamine shows Tessa her dollhouse, which is a replica of her actual house before her parents died. Jessamine is steadfast in that she does not want the life of a Shadowhunter, that she would rather die. I found it really interesting to see that Jessamine's usual demeanor is mostly a front because being with the Shadowhunters completely disgusts and terrifies her.

Then we return to Charlotte and Henry in Mr. Mortmain's office. Mr. Mortmain knows all about Nephilim, and he admits to selling some of his cogs and things to the leader of the Pandemonium Club, who turns out to be the head of the local vampires, de Quincey. Mr. Mortmain also tells them that Nate, Tessa's brother, left Mortmain's to work for de Quincey and also that Tessa's father had once been shortly involved with the Pandemonium Club, though he never formally joined it.

Chapter 7
Tessa is summoned to Henry's workshop where he has been inspecting the automaton, which turns out to be Miranda. Henry and Charlotte tell Tessa what they found out about Nate, and then show her some markings on the inner workings of Miranda, a small d inside a larger Q, which is de Quincey's mark.

Next they go to dinner, where Will is bothering everyone, and Henry is distracted, and Jem is nice, Jessamine is annoyed, and Charlotte is resigned. I'm gathering that this is the usual way of things when the whole group is together. They talk about different things, de Quincey, Nate, Will trying to figure out why Jessamine has blood on her sleeve. Then a guest arrives that Charlotte invited so she gets up to leave. Henry asks Tessa if he can take her clockwork angel pendant to his workshop to inspect it, and she reluctantly agrees. Then she goes with Charlotte to meet Lady Belcourt, the vampire informant that the Shadowhunters work with on occasion.

Chapter 8
Of course, Will and Jem catch up to Tessa and Charlotte. Lady Belcourt is a baroness and it turns out she has met Will at a Downworlder gambling den. Will says some of his witty things, which I quite enjoy, and Jem adds his in, which I also adore. Then Lady Belcourt, or Camille, shares the information she has. She has met Nate, and sees the family resemblance between him and Tessa. She talks about de Quincey and how despite being thought an ally of the Nephilim, he actually hates them, and how he as parties during which he kills humans for sport, which is against the Law. However, the Nephilim cannot go after de Quincey unless a Shadowhunter witnesses his breaking the law, so the group comes up with a plan. Tessa will pretend to be Lady Belcourt and Will will act as her vampire subjugate.

The plan: Tessa will use her power to pretend to be Lady Belcourt, and Will, because he is known to some of the Pandemonium Club as a human who dabbles with Downworlders, will act has Lady Belcourt's human subjugate. They will attend the next party, witness the law-breaking, and call in the troops. Because the pair will not know the layout of the house or the people, Camille says she will provide her lover, Magnus Bane (squee!), to meet them at the party. Ready to go, Camille leaves, escorted out by Will and Jem. They ask her why she is helping them take down de Quincey when he is essentially her vampire leader, and she reluctantly admits it is because she was in love with a werewolf and de Quincey murdered him with the help of the other vampires, so she wants the Shadowhunters to kill them all. I really, really like Camille.

Next, we are back with Tessa in her room, and Charlotte has knocked on her door and is called in. She hands Tessa her clockwork angel back, telling her that Henry cleaned out the rust from the mechanism but didn't really learn anything. Then Charlotte reveals to Tessa the truth about her father's involvement with the Pandemonium Club, and they spend a little time discussing what it could mean since Nate apparently knew about the Shadow World before he arrived in London. Then Charlotte explains what happened to Sophie, and they diverge into a bit of a philosophical talk, with Tessa realizing that she can never go back to the life she had before or ever be free of the Shadow World.

My verdict so far:
I'm glad that one of the main plot lines - who is creating the automatons and why - is being pieced together rather quickly and that we won't have to wait the entire book to find out most of what is going on with that. I'm still enjoying the character development, or really, character revelations, but I still can't get enough of Jem. I'd also like to mention how easy of a read this is. If I weren't trying to keep to the reading schedule of certain chapters each week, I would have finished this book pretty quickly.

Check back tomorrow for recaps of Chapters 9 and 10!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 1: Chapter 3 - Chapter 5

Week 1: Chapter 3 - Chapter 5

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We began reading Clockwork Angel this past week. It's still not too late to join us, whether you've never read the series or are a TID old hat! Check out our reading schedule here.

In my recap posts there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Chapter 3
Tessa wakes up from a dream, seemingly alone in a room, until she sees a "monster." The monster is Brother Enoch, one of the Silent Brothers, which is obvious to anyone that's read TMI. Tessa is freaked out but Charlotte, the head of the London Institute, calms her and chats with her. We find out that Tessa is a Downworlder, and that the Shadowhunters are going to protect her and help her find her brother, thought Tessa is not sure she believes it considering what happened with the Dark Sisters.

I love that tiny Charlotte is the leader. She seems very collected and intelligent and even kind of speaks like a diplomat. We are given more info about the world, which having read TMI I knew already, but it didn't feel as boring to me as I would have expected. Then we meet Sophie, a servant, and I liked her banter with Charlotte. Sophie talks with Tessa about the clothes and why Charlotte doesn't like tight lacing and things, which makes sense and again gives a little peek into the time period. Tessa also looks at herself in a mirror again, which is about the third time. I understand why she's doing it, first to show that the six weeks had worn her down, then because she'd changed into someone else, and now to show the contrast from herself at the Dark House and now and because maybe she didn't change back "properly," but I'm tired of reading descriptions of her looking in mirrors.

Tessa goes to dinner and we get to meet some other Shadowhunters. We see Will again and get the "his eyes are so blue" comments and Tessa blushing when he smiles, but at least it doesn't go beyond that. Jessamine is another beautiful Shadowhunter, but she gets catty about Tessa being a Downworlder, so Tessa gives them a preview of her ability and stuns the room, though I thought Jessamine's reaction to it was funny. Will and Jessamine don't like each other, but we don't find out why yet. I most liked Henry's introduction. He walks into the room and exclaims that Tessa bit him, because she did, but Henry is also on fire and doesn't realize it. He is married to Charlotte and they seem to compliment each other. There is a little talk of the Pandemonium Club, but not much.

Chapter 4
The dinner continues into this chapter, and when Tessa leaves, she gets lost in the Institute. Will finds her and gives her a tour. More banter ensues, but I like it better than I did between Jace and Clary because Will is less of a jerk. Tessa ends up touching on a sore subject and Will turns cold to Tessa and shows that jerkish side, but because it seemed to have a source and wasn't just Will being a jerk because he could, I didn't mind it as much.

During the tour of the Institute, we learn a little more about the servants, who are mundanes who have the Sight. Tessa learns a lot as well, some stuff the reader might already know, but there was some new info, like explaining the ouroboros and what a Pyxis is. We get descriptions of some of the rooms, and a look at the library. The Shadowhunter's Codex also makes an appearance.

Chapter 5
Tessa, having been left alone by Will after their dust up, has to wander around before she finds her room. When she does, she settles in and reads some of The Shadowhunter's Codex. She falls asleep and we are treated to a second dream (luckily it is short) and when she wakes up she realizes the music she was hearing in her dream is real. She goes to investigate and finds Jem playing the violin. Having been reading the Codex, she plies Jem with questions, which he seems happy to answer. They are having a nice conversation and then Will appears, supposedly drunk. Despite this, you immediately get the sense of Jem and Will's brotherly relationship, which I enjoyed. Jem has a coughing fit and Will is quick to his aid. Tessa realizes that Will doesn't smell of alcohol at all.

The next we see Tessa she is looking in the mirror, again (mirror count: 4). She talks to Sophie about her relationship with the Shadowhunters, which is interesting, then she goes to breakfast. When she gets there, Jessamine is being sort-of nice, which is suspicious. There is talk of trying to find Tessa's brother, and Charlotte and Henry plan on visiting his employer, Axel Mortmain, who most likely got rich off the opium trade. There is more banter, and Tessa holds her own this time, making Jem laugh, which was funny.

The next bit we are with Tessa and Jessamine as they shop for clothing, and the girls seem to be forming a loose friendship, or at least a truce of some kind. Not much other than that happens, though Tessa does see a Downworlder, or at least thinks she does, on the street.

The last section of the chapter shows Charlotte and Henry meeting with Axel Mortmain to see if he knows anything about Nate. It seems like a long shot, considering Mortmain has hundreds of employees, but he seems to remember Nate. He also knows right away that Charlotte and Henry are Shadowhunters. I enjoyed that because it was unexpected.

My verdict so far:
I'm really enjoying the banter between the characters, and since I love lore, there was plenty in these chapters to satisfy me. I also like how Clare is dropping little things into the story, like Jem laughing at Tessa's joke or Will not being drunk, to hint at the relationships. As for the love triangle that I know is to come, I like how these relationships are forming more slowly, or seem to be, and I can see the basis of why Tessa would like Jem or like Will and vice versa. The writing is still fine, but Clare is being a little repetitive with the mirrors and dreams regarding Tessa.

Check back next week for recaps of Chapters 6 through 10!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

[Infernal Readalong] Clockwork Angel Week 1: Prologue - Chapter 2

Week 1: Prologue - Chapter 2

Hey quirks! As you may remember from this post, I'm participating in a readalong of Cassandra Clare's The Infernal Devices! We began reading Clockwork Angel this past week. It's still not too late to join us, whether you've never read the series or are a TID old hat! Check out our reading schedule here.

This is my first of the recap posts, and there is a high chance of  SPOILERS. If you do not want to be spoiled on anything, I suggest reading the listed chapters before reading this post or avoiding these posts if you haven't read the book.

Most of the time, I don't think a prologue is necessary, and while it might not be necessary here, I didn't mind it. It gives us an idea of what our main characters, Will, Jem, and Tessa, are up to before they meet. We are given a sense of Will's character right of the bat. He's cocky and likes to joke around. Jem is more serious and reserved. They play off each other nicely.

The writing is something I was wondering about before reading, because I had some issues with Clare's The Mortal Instrument series, especially her characterizations and relationships. I've noticed already some characters telling other characters things they should already know, but other than that it's okay. It doesn't have the atmosphere that I usually expect in historical novels, but I'm not bothered by that as the book flows and reads easily.

When we get to Tessa, she seems like a normal enough girl for the times, but there's not much else to know about her yet, other than she is really excited to see her brother.

Chapter 1
Through Tessa's eyes we get a really good visual of the Dark House and the atmosphere of the place comes through. Tessa's narration (even though it is via third person) adds to the sense of the times as she is mostly a proper young lady, though it is hard for her to be such in her current situation.

The Dark Sisters are creepy, creepy, creepy. I think Tessa's shape-shifting ability is fantastic, but what I really like about it is she gets a sense of the person and his or her thoughts and feelings when she changes. My guess as to what kind of creature Tessa is would be a warlock/witch, but that's just a guess.

Something that was a little off for me in this chapter is that Tessa is practicing her changing because the Dark Sisters have her brother, Nate, and if Tessa refuses, they will kill him. She's been doing this for six weeks to protect Nate, but when Tessa hears that the Dark Sisters plan to marry her off to the Magister, she forgets all about her brother and tries to escape. In reading that passage, it seems like Tessa sort of snaps a little, realizing the extent of the terrible situation she is in, and she is only concerned about her own survival. I can understand that, but it doesn't fit with the completely devoted sister view we've been given up to this point.

When Tessa escapes, she hits the servant, Miranda, over the head, and instead of bleeding and stuff, Miranda's head collapses sans blood and she continues to try to get Tessa to leave the room, though she sort-of powers down before she can, and crashes to the floor. I immediately thought, given the title, that Miranda, and probably the only other servant of the Dark Sisters, the coachman, were some kind of automatons. It made for a pretty freaky scene.

Chapter 2
Tessa does not escape and is returned to her locked room and tied to her bed. I like the Dark Sisters as villains because while they seem a little over the top, they are still creepy and cruel. When they're gone, Tessa figures out a way to get out of her bonds, and we learn another aspect of her shape-shifter abilities, that she can shift into someone she's already shifted into, even though she isn't holding anything belonging to that person.

When she gets out of the ropes, she doesn't have a chance to do anything because someone tries to get in her room. She attacks the person, and it turns out to be Will. Will and her start the banter that Clare seems to be fond of having in her books, and I enjoyed it. Will continues to make ridiculous comments and I like that Tessa actually considers the fact that he might be crazy. While trying to escape Dark House, they end up in a slaughtering room with bodies and blood everywhere.

The Dark Sisters find them and there is banter between Will and the sisters and we learn a little more about what they are and what they've been up to. Then the wall is smashed in, which I found amusing, and Will is joined by two allies. A fight ensues, which is one thing I've always enjoyed about Clare's books, her fight scenes, and Tessa hurts another Shadowhunter by biting him, thinking he was an enemy. I like that despite Tessa not knowing how to fight, she always puts up one and is not as passive a person as she might seem.

The fight ends with Mrs. Black being killed and Mrs. Dark getting away, and Tessa going unconscious, which is beyond cliche, but at least she actually got hit in the head and didn't just faint.

My verdict so far:
I like Tessa. Will is amusing, but I want to see more of Jem. The shadow world in London feels dark and creepy. The clockwork angel, which is on a necklace that Tessa got from her mother, has intrigued me and I think it is a key to Tessa's heritage.

Check back tomorrow for recaps of Chapters 3 through 5!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Reading Challenge Update [September 2013]

Hey quirks! I've decided to split up my reading updates due to how many challenges I am participating in this year. In 2012, I was only keeping up with my Goodreads Reading Challenge and I liked how I did that one and all the stats I kept up with, but I'm going to call them something different. The new title for those updates will be "2013 Goodreads Rundown" and they will appear bimonthly.

This series of posts I'm calling Reading Challenges Update is for all the other challenges I am trying to complete. These updates will be less detailed as far as stats go because I will just be listing the individual challenges and which books fit under them that I read during the previous month.

September: 3 --- Total: 37/24
Cross My Heart, Hope to Die by Sara Shepard (The Lying Game #5)
Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier (Ruby Red Trilogy #2)
A Spark Unseen by Sharon Cameron (The Dark Unwinding #2)

September: 6 --- Total: 52/25+
Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike
Cross My Heart, Hope to Die by Sara Shepard (The Lying Game #5)
Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier (Ruby Red Trilogy #2)
If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch
Reboot by Amy Tintera (Reboot #1)
The Eyes of the Dragon by Stephen King

September: 0 --- Total: 6/1

September: 1 --- Total: 9/12
Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier (Ruby Red Trilogy #2)  [Keyword: Blue]

September: 0 --- Total: 30/36

September: 1 --- Total: 9/12
The Eyes of the Dragon by Stephen King [Creature: Dragon]

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Ink Anticipation [16] - October 2013

This old feature has a new use! Ink Anticipation is now for sharing what books I am looking forward to that will be released during the following month. Clicking on a book cover will either take you to the book's Goodreads page or to my review. Don't forget to share your most anticipated releases in the comments!

October 1st

October 8th

October 15th

October 22nd

October 29th