IT's not as action-packed as The Mortal Instruments series, but it has its own strengths. Foremost, is the heroine. Tessa is waaaayyyy more likable than Clary. She's level-headed, realistic, in her assessment of her brother, Nate. though she does have a weakness for Will Herondale, i can't entirely blame her. at least she's not quickly falling in love with anyone. and she's well-read. I have to like Will and Tessa's love for reading, what can I say?
The Victorian setting kind of reminds me of Earl and Fairy
(an anime which involves faeries, knights, and the Seelie Court), and Emma: A Victorian Romance
. Well, if you havent watched them, you wouldn't appreciate that. What I'm trying to say is, the Victorian setting is romantic and dark at the same time. It's pretty magical, mix that with the automatons which have that Hugo
feel of it, and it's like an entirely different world.
What's a little off though, is the over-all dynamics of the characters. Why do Jessamine and Will hate each other so much? What's up with Henry and Charlotte's marriage? Poor, poor Thomas whom Clare did no justice by. When Tessa first meets the residents of the Institute, they've been living with each other for years, and yet they're all pretty awkward with each other. It's like I had no real sense of why they feel that way about each other and their motives for their actions. It adds to the mystery and intrigue and makes you crave for answers, but it's all still frustrating (especially Will). Oh well, maybe Clare would remedy that in Clockwork Prince.