While there were some things I enjoyed about Clockwork Angel, I was immensely disappointed with the turn of events in book 2. I didn't have high expectations about Clockwork Princess, but I read it out of sheer curiosity with the hope that I would find something redeemable about it. Unfortunately, this series and I were not were never meant to be on good terms.
Readers, you should feel cheated. Seriously. In terms of heroines, Tessa is a complete moron. The book begins with, I kid you not, a giant demon worm that's wreaking havoc in the shadowhunter world and must be put to a stop! What does Tessa do? She insists on tagging along to fight in the battle even though she is not dressed to fight (in fact, she's wearing her wedding dress) and doesn't even have an adequate weapon to defend herself. What happens, you may ask? Tessa ends up catching a fainting woman and must leave the battle to bring her to safety.
How unfortunate it is that the heroine of the book doesn't even have the ability to fight or defend those people she supposedly loves.
The trend of Tessa being in constant need of saving continues in this installment. Of course, Will is the one who must fulfill the knight in shining armor role since Tessa's betrothed spends a large portion of the narrative collapsing due to his illness and is essentially confined to his deathbed. While Jem is certainly the more likeable romantic suitor, he's about as interesting as a goldfish. Perhaps a cute goldfish, but a mind-numbingly dull one. I never bought into Jem and Tessa's whirlwind romance. I'm sure she loves him, but their interactions were merely sweet and lacked passion. Will has a history of being an ass and he pushes the people he cares about away, but at least he has some personality.
Anyone who actually cares about the way the love triangle is resolved may be sorely disappointed with how the author chose to end the story. Let's just say the author went where I suspected she would and it's unfair to the readers who invested time in getting to know the characters and story.
This story was too melodramatic for my tastes. It's nonstop angst, which quickly becomes tiresome and boring. One of the few things I liked about this series was the wit and humor shown by several characters even in the darkest moments of the narrative. Humor is something that is noticeably absent in Clockwork Princess.
The one kernel of praise I will give extends to Magnus Bane - he's probably my favorite character in the entire series. I haven't read the Mortal Instrument series and don't intend to. I'm sure Clare's fans will appreciate the connections made to the MI books though.
For me, I say good riddance.