Okay, okay, this one is gonna be emotional. It’s a fresh wound. I swear, this woman is tearing my life apart with her books. Cassandra Clare has done it again, this time with the Infernal Devices. They are the prequel series to her famous Mortal Instruments series (Yes, I will do a post about them soon), set in 19th century London, it follows Tessa Gray who comes to London from her home in New York after her aunt dies to live with her brother, Nathaniel, who promises her a new life with him in England. When Tessa arrives, however, she is kidnapped by a pair of demons called the Dark Sisters who force Tessa to reveal a power that she didn’t even know she had.
The story follows her escape from the Dark Sisters’ House and her life in the London Institute while she falls in love with two Shadowhunters and is hunted by the Magister who wishes to use her to destroy all Nephilim.
It’s a pretty intense story but I loved every bit of it. I don’t think I’ve cried that much over a book since Mockingjay, and that had me bawling.
First thing’s first. Will or Jem? Jem. But I definitely love Will as well.
Seriously, though, the first scene with Will I was like ‘Oh, my God, I love this guy, he’s incredible’ then as soon as I met Jem all that went out the window and I was like ‘Yes, this is my person, I like this person’. I love both of them but there’s something about Jem’s gentleness and the way he is with Will that just get’s me right in the feels.
After Tessa and Will escape the Dark Sisters’ house, Will takes Tessa back to the London Institute where she meets Charlotte Branwell, the head of the London Institute and a total badass Shadowhunter. Later that night she meets Jem, who is playing violin in his bedroom when she walks in. The story takes them on a journey through London’s Downworld, investigating a man called the Magister and searching for Tessa’s brother. I was so in love with this from the first page. There’s so much mystery and you never know what’s going to happen next. The characters are masterfully created and their personalities are all so different, which is something that can turn a good book into a great book. But this is an incredible book and an incredible series. Geez, Cassie, why do you have to do this to me?!
A few of my favourite lines: (And probably everyone’s favourite lines)
1. Will: Never trust a duck.
2. Will: A forty foot worm? Imagine the size of the fish we could catch.
Jem: It’s not funny, you know.
Will: It is a bit.
Jem: You cannot reduce the situation to worm jokes, Will. This is Gideon and Gabriel’s father we’re discussing.
Will: We’re not just discussing him; we’re chasing him through an ornamental sculpture garden because he’s turned into a worm.
3. Gabriel: Father is a worm.
4. Tessa: And what colour do you suppose the inner depths of your soul are, Will Herondale?
5. Will: Life is a book and there are a thousand pages I have not yet read.
6. Gabriel: You know, there was a time I though we could be friends.
Will: There was a time I though I was a ferret, but that turned out to be an opium haze. Did you know it had that effect? Because I didn’t.
7. Tessa: You don’t think I can fight because I’m a girl.
Jem: I don’t think you can fight because you’re wearing a wedding dress. For what it’s worth, I don’t think Will could fight in that dress either.
Will: Perhaps not, but I would make a radiant bride.
8. Everyone else: *having a serious conversation*
Henry: I really love eggs.
And about a hundred others.
As main characters go, Tessa is pretty great. So often I find main characters boring, whiny, and self-centred. Tessa was none of these things. She’s strong, selfless and despite being a little indecisive about choosing between Will and Jem, she stuck to her guns after her engagement to Jem until his ‘death’. Her kindness and loyalty are admirable and she is just incredibly sweet. Ah, I do love Tessa.
Oh my Lord. Will is the sassiest little munchkin I think I’ve ever encountered. It must be a Herondale thing. From the very first moment we meet Will I knew that he would be an incredible character. He has a razor-sharp wit and while he was awfully rude sometimes at the beginning he did have a reason and a killer backstory. I absolutely love the real reason he loves ducks because what originally seemed like a silly fear actually turned out to be something really sad that even though I didn’t find out what it was until several weeks after I finished the books, it was like ripping a half-healed wound open again and pumping it full of salt and dettol.
JEM!!! It’s safe to say that Jem is one of the most–if not THE MOST–beautifully crafted book character I have ever had the pleasure of reading about. It might just be sympathy for the fact that he spent about 800 pages on the brink of death, but he was just the sweetest guy and the most beautiful character. Also, the fact that he managed to get into all three Shadowhunters series’ despite only being a Shadowhunter is pretty awesome.
Probably the most caring character Cassie has ever written. She loves Will despite his temper, Jem despite his illness, Jessie despite her reluctance, Henry despite his flamboyance and Tessa despite her being new to the institute. Also, she’s badass as heck so there’s that.
I love Henry. He is actually the cutest human being in the history of literature. Actual thing he said whilst everyone else was having a very serious discussion: “I really love eggs.” And the thing is that that’s not even weird and I didn’t even question it because A. It fits perfectly with his character, and B. It’s Cassandra Clare and I am totally and completely her trash. When Henry and Charlotte finally realised that they both loved each other and that neither of them thought that it was just a political marriage my heart broke into a thousand tiny pieces. It was so sweet and so lovely. Seeing them both happy and being all cute was probably my favourite part of the entire series.
The sass is strong with this one… I really love how Jessie matches Will’s wit a lot of the time. She seems shallow a lot of the time but you know that deep down she is an absolute sweetheart and in the end she dies protecting her friends. And in Lady Midnight when her ghost protects the London Institute I just about died because of Magnus’s reacting to it.
Ugh, traitor, can’t deal. I know that having a traitor in the midst makes for a much better story but I hate them so much. Though I do love how his betrayal was executed. That was perfection.
Evil, backstabbing, conspiring weasel. Again, hate the character, love the way it was written. How he seemed so innocent to begin with and how he let them go after De Quinsey, GENIUS.
I really love cats. Especially immortal ones that show up in every single Shadowhunters book and hate everyone except Jem and deliver presents to people’s doors. I could probably dedicate an entire blog post to this damn cat I love him so much. Should I do that?
Overall, this series of gripping and beautifully written and I loved every second of it. I cried so much near the end that I could read through my tears but it was definitely worth all of the heartache. I love it 10/10 would recommend.