Friday, March 13, 2015

Series Spotlight: The Infernal Devices

There's always those books that you meant to review, the books that you read before you started reviewing, or maybe you reviewed one of the books but it wasn't even the first one. Well, here's my answer to that: Series Spotlight. I'll be reviewing an entire series, and just generally talk about it.

The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare

I'm actually pretty sure I've already reviewed one of these books on here (probably Clockwork Princess) but, I thought it would hurt to talk about it again. The Infernal Devices is a three book trilogy with two online short stories that bookend the series. It is the distant prequel to the popular The Mortal Instruments series. It's not necessary to read The Mortal Instruments to read The Infernal Devices - and I should know because this was my introduction to the world of Shadowhunters.

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... 

If you'd ask me my favorite thing about this series, the answer is easy: The humor.

Yeah, I like the characters. They're all interesting and surprisingly likable - even the ones I didn't think I could like, I wound up liking by the end of the trilogy.

Yeah, I like the setting. Okay, I come really, really close to loving the setting. This is a strange mix of Victoriana, steampunk and paranormal that works really well. Detractors say that the series only dabbled in steampunk, and while that is somewhat true, this series is really historical/urban fantasy first with a healthy dose of steampunk on the side. I really feel that this would be a good book for readers that like the first two genres I mentioned but is just getting started in steampunk.

Yeah, I like the plot - though it's probably the weakest aspect for me. It's a bit predictable with the whole 'special girl' and the love triangle doesn't really help it to seem more unique. Because yes, there is a love triangle - but it's kind of...odd. Not the strangest love triangle I've ever seen, but it's different. So, the plot was a little lacking for me.

But the characters were likable enough to make up for that - and you know why they were so likable? Because they made me laugh. Some of the weird lines and retorts that these people came up with were great. Seriously, I read books to relax and to have fun and this series is without a doubt fun.

That doesn't mean there's not serious moments (after all, Clockwork Princess is one of the few books that has actually made me cry) but there is such wonderful humor - sometimes gallows and a bit dark, other times light and fun -  that I really like this series.