Review: The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare


I waited for the series to be finished simply because I am just bad at waiting and chances are I would have forgotten what I have read when the next book comes out. So instead of the individual books, I’d like to focus more on the three main characters as I see and understand them them and some concepts that became much more clearer to me in this series than The Mortal Instruments.

Will Herondale. The startling resemblance to Jace Wayland/Herondale’s character is not very hard to notice (plus Alec Lightwood’s good looks). The good guy pretending so hard to be the bad one not to look cool but to protect the ones he love. I never liked these type of character before because I find them so hard to sympathize with. These characters could be frustrating at best that I start to root for other characters in the story. But not Will. With Clare’s magic at creating very real characters that it’s so easy to believe and understand him that you wanted to hug him tight until the bad dreams go away. He was described as noble and a complete gentleman. Again, Will being noble and holding his feelings back to make others happy would not have the same effect if it weren’t for the situation he, Jem and Tessa were in.

James “Jem”  Carstairs. A sick and dying drug addict who is also Will’s parabatai (more in this later). Yes, he is dying and I have accepted then that this sweet boy will make me cry for so many reasons and I was right. It was very difficult for me to read the several parts of the series because the tears wouldn’t stop falling. Anyway, given the situation he was in, I never looked at him as weak and incapable of protecting the people he loves. Neither did I think that Will or Tessa or anyone around him loved him out of pity. Between Will and Jem, Jem is so much easier to love since the other one kept pushing people away while Jem welcomes everything with a bright attitude. If I ever felt pity for anyone, it wasn’t for Jem. My heart went out to Will and Tessa, seeing how much they both love Jem and is willing to do anything (like reaching into the fire for the much valued drug making him live or voluntarily giving yourself up to the enemy to save his life). Only during rare moments did we see him sulk and wish to have a longer life, but that didn’t last long. On the moments that count, he was the smart one making sound decisions and accepting his faith as a given not because he has lost hope, rather, he reminded me how precious each moment in life is. When he was twelve, he was told he’d live for only a year if he’s lucky but as things turned out, he lived longer than that and that much was enough for him. Well, until Tessa came into his life…

Tessa Gray. A girl who had exceptional talent in shape-shifting because of the blood that runs in her veins. Because of her talent, she is wanted by the enemy to make the Nephilim disappear. Like Clary, I didn’t feel much for her but I were to chose, I’d choose Tessa over Clary any day just because she could kick ass better than Clary. What’s interesting for me is her love for Jem AND Will. Even before I read Clare’s post on why or how come one person could have more than one great love, Tessa never appeared like a bitch to me even if she claimed to love both boys equally. For some weird reason, Clare convinced me it was possible though no other story I have read, watched or heard was able to do otherwise. I understood how much she loved both. I didn’t join Team Will or Team Jem, as I would have done in any other books with love triangles involved. I was pretty much contented with the way things turned out in the end. I believe Tessa is one lucky girl to have found two great loves, though I believe she’d have more loves and heartbreaks, like Magnus Bane, being immortal and all…

The concept of Parabatai. An oath taken by two Shadowhunter warriors, binding them to each other as blood brothers and promising to protect each other. That didn’t mean much to me while I was reading The Mortal Instruments. During that time, it was a given for me to protect your blood brother during any situation, putting the your parabatai‘s welfare before yours. An old concept given a new name. That was it. But in The Infernal Devices, I have learned that there is no greater love than the one your parabatai gives you. It will be difficult to understand how three people could love each other equally. The love Will and Jem will never be matched “because he loved him as his soul”. Watching two boys who are both willing to give up anything for each other could be very very very heartbreaking. I couldn’t help thinking how these boys loved each other so much and not fall in love with each other. Haha. No wonder there are alot of fanarts going around, even on Clare’s tumblr (scan Will Herondale and Jem Carstairs tags and you should see more fanarts).  Even the parabatai oath sounded like wedding vows to me, though I know that having a relationship with your parabatai is forbidden, still…

The ending of the series was very reassuring for me. I had high hopes for The Mortal Instruments last installment and the start of the third series, The Dark Artifices and, of course, The Bane Chronicles.

As another fan of the series put it, “The Infernal Devices is not about ‘who’ to love, it is about  deciding ‘to love’.” And that pretty much tells it all.