Clockwork Angel by Cassandra ClareClockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Angel

byCassandra Clare

Paperback | September 1, 2015

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about

Magic is dangerous—but love is more dangerous still. Discover the “compulsively readable” (Booklist) first book in the #1 New York Times bestselling Infernal Devices trilogy, prequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series—now with a gorgeous new cover, a map, a foreword, and excusive bonus content! Clockwork Angel is a Shadowhunters novel.

When Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks, and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform into another person. What’s more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by—and torn between—two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm’s length…everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world…and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.
Cassandra Clare was born on July 27, 1973, in Teheran, Iran, and spent much of her childhood travelling the world with her family. Her real name is Judith Rumelt, and Cassandra Clare is her pen name. After college, she lived in Los Angeles and New York where she worked at various entertainment magazines. She started working on The Mort...
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Title:Clockwork AngelFormat:PaperbackDimensions:544 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 1.4 inPublished:September 1, 2015Publisher:Margaret K. McElderry BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1481456024

ISBN - 13:9781481456029

Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Epic Climax This was an epic climax tale... and of course to be continued.
Date published: 2017-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good as the rest! I waited a while to decide to read this book after finishing the Mortal Instruments because I was worried it might not be as good, but I found myself enjoying this novel more because of the time period it takes place in. #plumreward
Date published: 2017-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Such a beautiful start to Cassandra's new series
Date published: 2017-11-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Stunning I faithfully read each of the The Mortal Instruments books as they came out, but when The Infernal Devices were released, I just kind of knew that I was too attached to the TMI characters, and that no matter how good TID was, I wouldn’t like it because it wasn’t Jace and Clary and Simon and Alec and Isabelle… you know? Does anyone else do that?? :S Anyways – I was missing the Shadow World, so I took Clockwork Angel down off my shelf and read it completely in one sitting, on my day off. There was no way in hell I could have put it down! I will be starting Clockwork Prince just as soon as I post this review…. The characters are diverse and complex and lovely, and I adore the Victorian London version of the Shadow World. Can’t wait to keep reading! . *SOILERS BELOW* I always find myself wanting to just stop reading Cassie’s books, like 20 pages from the end when they are still all wrapped up and everyone COULD live happily ever after... Clockwork Angel was NOT AN EXCEPTION to that rule. Holy moly, soul pain. Will, you insufferable ass. WHYYYYYY could you not just be happy!?!!?!!?!!? Must read the next book asap to find out Will’s baggage and because I just really need to know if Jem survives this series or not…
Date published: 2017-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from greattt it's so good and made me cry, don't wanna spoil why but i would read again. i'm planning on buying the next book!
Date published: 2017-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful This is a beautiful series with a strong lead female character that doesn't make you want to rip your hair out. She holds many feminine qualities that make her likable while still having a mind of her own (yet she is still able to make rational and intelligent decisions - imagine that). In fact, all of the characters a deep and they will quickly snag your heart. It does contain the cliche love triangle (I would say spoiler but anyone could probably figure out it was coming pretty early on in the first novel), however I find it a refreshing take. The concept of shadowhunters is unique and Cassandra Claire crafts this world nicely. I haven't read her newest shadowhunter series but I have a hard time believing it is better than this one, and I can say very confidently that the Infernal Devices is SIGNIFICANTLY better than The Mortal Instruments, so don't allow that to turn you away. It is, however, neat to see the connections between the series as she very skillfully brings pieces from each series into the other. I very much enjoyed this series and most certainly would read it again.
Date published: 2017-10-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Age group Good for people in high school but could also be read by those much older and younger
Date published: 2017-10-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing So great! I read the Mortal Instruments before this but I think reading the Infernal Devices before gives you lots of prior knowledge and helps you understand more! It was different from the Mortal Instruments and didn't feel like a repeat. The characters are so amazing!
Date published: 2017-10-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I loved this book and how we get to see the previous generations of shadowhunters, I love the interactions between Will, Jem and Tessa... such a tragic love story with ups and downs, smiles and tears...
Date published: 2017-10-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Cassandra Clare is ah-mazing I recommend reading this series during fall time!
Date published: 2017-09-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Cassandra Clare is ah-mazing I highly recommend reading this around fall time!
Date published: 2017-09-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from fave hands down my favorite trilogy recommend 100%
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from fave hands down my favorite trilogy recommend 100%
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from fave hands down my favorite trilogy recommend 100%
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from fave hands down my favorite trilogy recommend 100%
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great One of my favorite trilogies.
Date published: 2017-09-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So gooood I started reading this before the Mortal Instruments series and cannot wait to read it again now that I have read the shadowhunter books.
Date published: 2017-09-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from YES! I started this book without any knowledge of this world. I never watch or read anything else by Clare and while I was scare I wouldn't understand anything, it didn't pose any problem. I flew trough it in a few hours only. It's an easy read with a lot of actions and good characters.
Date published: 2017-08-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Outstanding This series is absolutely riveting, magical and the characters are ones you fall in love with!
Date published: 2017-08-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awesome It's a really good start to the series, the world building is really interesting. I can't wait to continue this series.
Date published: 2017-08-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read This series has the perfect mix of romance and history in an enchantingly eerie historical setting. The characters are unlike any I've read about before and are all very developed and endearing. I would highly recommended this over the mortal instruments!
Date published: 2017-08-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Love It This is one of my all time favorite trilogies! I loved the plot and the characters in the Infernal Devices way more than the Mortal Instruments!
Date published: 2017-08-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! This introduction to the Infernal Devices is wonderful. Love the new characters and different era
Date published: 2017-08-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fell in love with this series This is an awesome series. This was my favorite in the 3 book series. Although all the books were amazing. I've read so many young adult series this year and the Clockwork Angel series hands down was THE BEST!
Date published: 2017-08-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved it very well written couldn't put it down
Date published: 2017-08-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Same world, new-ish characters It's great to learn more about this universe and to meet new characters. They're somewhat familiar because their personalities resemble the characters from the mortal instruments. That can be a good thing for you or a bad thing. Personally, I like the parallels. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really Awesome! I absolutely loved this series for so many reasons. I highly recommend!!!
Date published: 2017-07-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from good new story and characters yet feels familiar #plumreview
Date published: 2017-07-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Well-written I love the plot and characters of this book. She does a great job at creating the world and developing the characters.
Date published: 2017-07-26
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good, I guess I thought this book was slow, but it wasn't bad
Date published: 2017-07-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good For the first book it's not that bad, much darker then TMI, but the plot is a little slow at first
Date published: 2017-07-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it Not only does the plot pull you in, but you can't help but want to know more about the characters.
Date published: 2017-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing!!! Really twisting and definitely surpassed my expectations. TMI fans will love this series
Date published: 2017-07-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it more than TMI This is the prequel series to the mortal Instruments and ive gotta say, i enjoyed it more. Not that TMI was bad, but the characters in TID were more likable imo. Plus Jem and Will, that's all i gotta say
Date published: 2017-06-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Prequel to Shadow Hunters If you love the shadow hunter series you will love this one because it tells more about the world! This series gives even more history and background of everything! You will not want to miss it!
Date published: 2017-06-27
Rated 3 out of 5 by from I like it but... I enjoyed reading this book but not as much as I enjoyed reading TMI
Date published: 2017-06-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Clockwork Angel I loved the shadowhunter series, but I thought this one was even better.
Date published: 2017-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My favorite series! The infernal devices is one of my favorite series ever and this book was an amazing introduction to this part of the shadowhunter world
Date published: 2017-06-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome! This book is definitely my favourite in the Infernal Devices trilogy - it is the most exciting because it has the most action and drama
Date published: 2017-05-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great I read the Infernal Devices series after the Mortal Instruments, so it was cool to discover some of the families' histories. It is definitely worth reading!
Date published: 2017-05-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Surprisingly Good This was the first Shadowhunters book I ever read, and I picked it up on a whim. I ended up reading it all in one sitting, it was THAT good. Since then I've read every single book in the Shadowhunters series and enjoyed them, but there's always something special about re-reading the book that got me started with it.
Date published: 2017-05-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it i used this book for a novel study
Date published: 2017-04-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from This was so goooooood For some reason I wasn't sure if I was going to like this at the beginning but omg I was so wrong. There is a major plot twist at the end so get ready. Now th reason I wasn't sure I was going to like this was because of the love triangle, but as I got to know both Jem and Will, it was impossible to hate one or love the other more. The only annoying thing I must say is that Tessa gets annoying at one point in the second book because she can't choose which one she likes more which got on my nerves.
Date published: 2017-04-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from You will not regret buying this book This story is captivating and you will fall in love with the characters in it
Date published: 2017-04-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book!! This is the best first book in a series I've ever read!
Date published: 2017-04-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fun This book was mesmerizing. I loved the parasol weapon!
Date published: 2017-04-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Action Packed Loved the Victorian era as a setting and loved the complex characters as they grew up together. Great read action packed, a little magic, a little mystery, a little romance.
Date published: 2017-04-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from always pleased cassandra clare never disappoints with her books, this one was no exception. This book was beautiful, I love the shadow hunter world, and having it set back in time made it even better.
Date published: 2017-03-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enchanting Trilogy While I enjoy the original "city" trilogy these novels are historical fiction sic-fi which just takes it up 5 notches for me. I always read Cassandra Clare's novels, cannot wait for the new one to release March 23, already have taken the day off work to devour it in a day. Which I have done with at least of these novels!
Date published: 2017-03-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AHHHHH I completely fell in love with all of these characters. Cassandra Clare hasn't let me down yet.
Date published: 2017-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A GREAT START I love this series, and this is an amazing start to it!
Date published: 2017-03-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great book I think I like this series more than the immortal instruments in some ways
Date published: 2017-02-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome Series I adored the mortal instruments series but I think I love the infernal devices even more! I love the whole shadow world that Cassandra Clare has created!
Date published: 2017-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from im in love get ready to fall in love with Will and Jem
Date published: 2017-02-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I loved it so so much! Great book.
Date published: 2017-02-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A beautiful start! I loved this book! A great start to an exciting adventure!
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVE! LOVE LOVE LOVE these series!
Date published: 2017-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome I loved this book, all of Clare's books are fantastic. If you haven't read these yet, you definitely should!
Date published: 2017-02-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Amazing Treat! This was a truly fantastic read! Clare has an outstanding way of bringing the details of her settings and characters to life. Her metaphors and similes are refreshing and never cliché. I love the Victorian London world she creates and the authentic details she includes, such as street and place names. A true treat to read which will leave readers in agony until they begin reading the next book in the series. Anyone who enjoys the Victorian culture and references to the literary culture of the time will fall in love with this book!
Date published: 2017-01-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WWIILLLLL HERONDALEEEEE READ THIS BOOK. It's so good
Date published: 2017-01-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great! I loved this book! I read it in one sitting!
Date published: 2017-01-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I've read this book years ago and have read it many times since
Date published: 2017-01-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare Clockwork Angel was AMAZING.I will admit I'm not the biggest fan of 3rd person past tense, so it did take me a little while to get into it, but once I did WOW! I've already grown attached to these characters and have become invested in their story and their secrets. If you love The Mortal Instruments, then you will surely love this book, maybe even more than the original series itself.Cassandra Clare lived up to my expectations. She is still one of the best writers ever! Overall, an EXCELLENT first book in a trilogy and I'm so excited to continue it immediately! Clockwork Prince, here I come!
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from So good Leaves lots of questions to be answered in the next book.
Date published: 2017-01-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So so good! Such a wonderful set up for the next two novels!
Date published: 2017-01-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Old Fashioned Shadowhunters Great new book in the Shadowhunter world with three new and loveable characters, and a romance that could go all kinds of ways. Tessa, Will, and Jem are an awesome, distinctive trio, and the world building is as unique and distinctive as ever. I really enjoyed this book!
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare, I really like this book but I found it very long drawn out, I found myself saying will this just happen already just a few times.I really like the main characters Tressa, Will and Jem. I have to say Jam (James) is my Favorite because he is the nice guy, the one that is protective, caring but sick and it's sad so you feel for him the whole book. Will is the jerk but is really just a good hearted hurt boy that is hard and defensive because the bad things that happened in his life, but you find a way to like him either way. Tressa is the clueless girl that is trying to find her brother and gets tired up with the shadow world that she never know existed but turns out to be stronger and everyone loves her. Now that the ground work is laid I hope the next one has more romance between the three. Very glad that I got a advance copy reading it already and will write and much more detailed review of Clockwork Prince.
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from pretty good not as good as the mortal instruments but still a good twist for the shadow hunter world
Date published: 2017-01-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from pretty good for a book based in the 1800's! I almost prefer this series to the mortal instruments.
Date published: 2017-01-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Graet way to start the trilogy! I read this book, now I need to read them all!
Date published: 2016-12-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I love this series I absolutely adore this series. My love for Cassandra Clare, although sometimes it hurts me, is so great, she's such an amazing author and I love her work. I would definitely and have definitely recommended this to my friends and family. 10/10
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Cute series :) I bought this before I heard about the City of Bones series and was glad it got me into the entire world of Mortal Instrument.
Date published: 2016-12-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Captivating. I loved this series more than the Moral Instruments series. I found myself being more captivated by my own imagination during the entires Clockwork series, than I did in Clare's previous work. Pleased, provided a few days of entertainment, and would definitely recommend to others! :)
Date published: 2016-12-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Alright It's hard not to compare this to the Mortal Instruments books considering that this is a prequel. In a direct comparison, it's not nearly as compelling. It's a decent enough read on its own but if you're reading this after you've already read Mortal Instruments then you may be a bit underwhelmed.
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing! Loved how the story was set apart from the modern era and how Cassandra was able to make me imagine and feel as if i was truly experiencing everything through Tessa's eyes.
Date published: 2016-12-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great! A gripping first book of the series that had me at the edge of my seat. The characters were also fantastic and loved Cassandra's writing style throughout the book!
Date published: 2016-12-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good! Good first book to a series
Date published: 2016-12-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from OK, But try and read again I started reading this right after Mortal Instruments, and wasn't as hooked... I ended up not finishing the book, but I will definitely be going back to try again. I think after being SOOO in love with MI, I wanted to be just a hooked right from the first page... I want to give it an equal chance...
Date published: 2016-12-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awesome steampunk/ fantasy/ young adult fiction Really amazing book that manages to entertain readers of various genres. Whether you like steampunk, fantasy, mystery, fiction, romance novels, historical fiction, this book combines them all in a wonderful and intriguing way.
Date published: 2016-12-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing One of my favourites of all time!
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great start to a new series! Love the setting and the characters! Fantastic plot!! Just as good as the mortal instruments if not better!
Date published: 2016-11-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing introduction! Cassie's haunting London is sure to intrigue... and so too are her characters. Their stories will tug at your heart and settle in your soul. I love her mortal instruments series, but this one has more of a family than a team feel. Trust me though. If you love one, you're sure to love both.
Date published: 2016-11-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved this trilogy is way better written than her mortal instruments series. I would say this is one of my favourite trilogies/series. Jem and Will<3
Date published: 2016-11-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favourite Trilogy! I am in love with this trilogy. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved It! This book made me want to time-travel back to 1878 London, England just to live in the same times as these characters. Absolutely amazing.
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Stunning I have to make one thing absolutely clear: read these books. Most importantly read them alongside The Mortal Instruments series in the order they were all published, that way you get the full effect and all the character references. I chose to put this one on the list instead of TMI because Will Herondale is my baby. Not only that but all characters in this book are so incredibly likeable and it's not just in the Shadow World, it's in old London too. You may have heard of the infamous Clockwork Princess epilogue. Let me just tell you it's for a good reason.
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awesome Great book. Enjoyable read. Wish it wasn't set in such an earlier decade (1800s) because the characters traits are somewhat annoying (specifically women characters). Other wise good. Not as good as her mortal instruments series but good nonetheless.
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Victorian shadowhunters rule I never thought anything Cassandra wrote could top the original mortal instruments trilogy, and then I read this book. If you thought that no character could be more tortured than Jace, then you will be surprised to meet both Will Herondale and Jem Carstairs, two shadowhunter boys with more baggage than any villain deserves to have. Tessa is interesting because she is not a shadowhunter, but not human. The love triangle in this book is original because Tessa has two good options, and she loves them both (I love them both), how will she ever choose! I guess I must keep reading to find out.
Date published: 2016-11-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS EVER!!! Seriously, Cassandra Clare wrote such a good series, my friends and I think that this series was a lot better than the mortal instruments series, this book gets better as it goes on. This is a book (and series) that I would most definitely recommend
Date published: 2016-11-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from ABSOLUTE LOVE I absolutely loved this series. I liked it much better than The Mortal Instruments series. If anyone were to ask me what series they should read, I will instantly recommend this series. This series has a special place in my heart as it was nothing that I expected. And the characters are so raw and lovable. You will not regret!
Date published: 2016-11-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Epic This whole series is amazing! Anything written by Cassandra Clare is gold!
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from TMI OR TIF? Cassandra Clare books are always really good but THE INFERNAL DEVICES WAS ASDATSGKSGFMESBUGNKAWN SO MANY FEEELLLLLSSSSS 12/10 READ
Date published: 2016-11-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from YA must-read! I wasn't planning on reading this series at first. I thought that the Mortal Instruments was enough but boy, i was wrong. I am so grateful that my friend didn't stop nagging nagging me until i picked this up. Holy crap, i'm so happy i did! WIll Herondale and Jem Carstairs are the love of my life.
Date published: 2016-11-04

Read from the Book

Clockwork Angel 1THE DARK HOUSE Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade —William Ernest Henley, “Invictus” “The Sisters would like to see you in their chambers, Miss Gray.” Tessa set the book she had been reading down on the bedside table, and turned to see Miranda standing in the doorway of her small room—just as she did at this time every day, delivering the same message she delivered every day. In a moment Tessa would ask her to wait in the corridor, and Miranda would leave the room. Ten minutes later she’d return and say the same thing again. If Tessa didn’t come obediently after a few of these attempts, Miranda would seize her and drag her, kicking and screaming, down the stairs to the hot, stinking room where the Dark Sisters waited. It had happened every day of the first week that Tessa had been in the Dark House, as she had come to call the place they kept her prisoner, until eventually Tessa had realized that the screaming and kicking didn’t do much good and simply wasted her energy. Energy that was probably better saved for other things. “One moment, Miranda,” Tessa said. The maid bobbed an awkward curtsy and went out of the room, shutting the door behind her. Tessa rose to her feet, glancing around the small room that had been her prison cell for six weeks. It was small, with flowered wallpaper, and sparsely furnished—a plain deal table with a white lace cloth over it where she ate her meals; the narrow brass bed where she slept; the cracked washstand and porcelain jug for her ablutions; the windowsill where she stacked her books, and the small chair where she sat each night and wrote letters to her brother—letters she knew she could never send, letters she kept hidden under her mattress where the Dark Sisters would not find them. It was her way of keeping a diary and of assuring herself, somehow, that she would see Nate again someday and be able to give them to him. She crossed the room to the mirror that hung against the far wall, and smoothed down her hair. The Dark Sisters, as they in fact seemed to wish to be called, preferred her not to look messy, although they didn’t appear to mind her appearance one way or the other past that—which was fortunate, because her reflection made her wince. There was the pale oval of her face dominated by hollow gray eyes—a shadowed face without color in its cheeks or hope in its expression. She wore the unflattering black schoolmarmish dress that the Sisters had given her once she’d arrived; her trunk had never followed her, despite their promises, and this was now the only piece of clothing she owned. She looked away quickly. She hadn’t always flinched from her reflection. Nate, with his fair good looks, was the one in the family generally agreed to have inherited her mother’s beauty, but Tessa had always been perfectly content with her own smooth brown hair and steady gray eyes. Jane Eyre had had brown hair, and plenty of other heroines besides. And it wasn’t so bad being tall, either—taller than most of the boys her own age, it was true, but Aunt Harriet had always said that as long as a tall woman carried herself well, she would forever look regal. She didn’t look regal now, though. She looked pinched and bedraggled and altogether like a frightened scarecrow. She wondered if Nate would even recognize her if he saw her today. At that thought her heart seemed to shrink inside her chest. Nate. He was the one she was doing all this for, but sometimes she missed him so much it felt like she’d swallowed broken glass. Without him, she was completely alone in the world. There was no one at all for her. No one in the world who cared whether she lived or died. Sometimes the horror of that thought threatened to overwhelm her and plunge her down into a bottomless darkness from which there would be no return. If no one in the entire world cared about you, did you really exist at all? The click of the lock cut her thoughts off abruptly. The door opened; Miranda stood on the threshold. “It is time to come with me now,” she said. “Mrs. Black and Mrs. Dark are waiting.” Tessa looked at her in distaste. She couldn’t guess how old Miranda was. Nineteen? Twenty-five? There was something ageless about her smooth round face. Her hair was the color of ditch water, pulled back harshly behind her ears. Exactly like the Dark Sisters’ coachman, she had eyes that protruded like a frog’s and made her look like she was permanently surprised. Tessa thought they must be related. As they went downstairs together, Miranda marching along with her graceless, clipped gait, Tessa raised her hand to touch the chain around her throat where the clockwork angel hung. It was habit—something she did each time she was forced to see the Dark Sisters. Somehow the feel of the pendant around her neck reassured her. She kept hold of it as they passed landing after landing. There were several levels of corridors to the Dark House, though Tessa had seen nothing of it but the Dark Sisters’ chambers, the halls and stairs, and her own room. Finally they reached the shadowed cellar. It was dank down here, the walls clammy with unpleasant moisture, though apparently the Sisters didn’t mind. Their office was ahead, through a set of wide double doors. A narrow corridor led away in the other direction, vanishing into darkness; Tessa had no idea what lay down that hallway, but something about the thickness of the shadows made her glad she had never found out. The doors to the Sisters’ office were open. Miranda didn’t hesitate, but clomped inside, Tessa following after her with great reluctance. She hated this room more than any other place on earth. To begin with, it was always hot and wet inside, like a swamp, even when the skies outside were gray and rainy. The walls seemed to seep moisture, and the upholstery on the seats and sofas was always blooming with mold. It smelled strange as well, like the banks of the Hudson on a hot day: water and garbage and silt. The Sisters were already there, as they always were, seated behind their enormous raised desk. They were their usual colorful selves, Mrs. Black in a dress of vibrant salmon pink and Mrs. Dark in a gown of peacock blue. Above the brilliantly colored satins, their faces were like deflated gray balloons. They both wore gloves despite how hot the room was. “Leave us now, Miranda,” said Mrs. Black, who was spinning the heavy brass globe they kept on the desk with one plump, white-gloved finger. Tessa had many times tried to get a better look at the globe—something about the way the continents were laid out had never looked quite right to her, especially the space in the center of Europe—but the sisters always kept her away from it. “And shut the door behind you.” Expressionless, Miranda did as asked. Tessa tried not to wince as the door shut behind her, closing off what little breeze there was in this airless place. Mrs. Dark tilted her head to the side. “Come here, Theresa.” Of the two women, she was the more kind—more likely to wheedle and persuade than her sister, who liked to convince with slaps and hissed threats. “And take this.” She held something out: a dilapidated bit of pink fabric tied in a bow, the sort that might be used as a girl’s hair ribbon. She was used to being handed things by the Dark Sisters now. Things that had once belonged to people: tie pins and watches, mourning jewelry, and children’s toys. Once the laces of a boot; once a single earring, stained with blood. “Take this,” said Mrs. Dark again, a hint of impatience in her voice. “And Change.” Tessa took the bow. It lay in her hand, as light as a moth’s wing, and the Dark Sisters stared impassively at her. She remembered books she had read, novels in which characters were on trial, standing quaking in the dock at the Old Bailey and praying for a verdict of not guilty. She often felt she was on trial herself in this room, without knowing of what crime she stood accused. She turned the bow over in her hand, remembering the first time the Dark Sisters had handed an object to her—a woman’s glove, with pearl buttons at the wrist. They had shouted at her to Change, had slapped her and shaken her as she’d told them over and over again with rising hysteria that she had no idea what they were talking about, no idea what they were asking her to do. She hadn’t cried, even though she’d wanted to. Tessa hated to cry, especially in front of people she didn’t trust. And of the only two people in the world she trusted, one was dead and the other imprisoned. They had told her that, the Dark Sisters, had told her that they had Nate, and if she didn’t do what they said, he would die. They’d showed her his ring, the one that had been her father’s—stained with blood now—to prove it. They hadn’t let her hold it or touch it, had snatched it back as she’d reached for it, but she’d recognized it. It was Nate’s. After that she had done everything they’d asked. Had drunk the potions they’d given her, done the hours of agonizing exercises, forced herself to think the way they wanted her to. They’d told her to imagine herself as clay, being shaped and molded on the potter’s wheel, her form amorphous and changeable. They’d told her to reach down into the objects they’d given her, to imagine them as living things, and to draw out the spirit that animated them. It had taken weeks, and the first time she had Changed, it had been so blindingly painful that she’d vomited and passed out. When she’d woken, she’d been lying on one of the moldering chaises in the Dark Sisters’ rooms, a damp towel being sponged across her face. Mrs. Black had been leaning down over her, her breath as bitter as vinegar, her eyes alight. “You did well today, Theresa,” she had said. “Very well.” That evening when Tessa had gone up to her room, there had been gifts for her, two new books on her bedside table. Somehow the Dark Sisters had realized that reading and novels were Tessa’s passion. There was a copy of Great Expectations and—of all things—Little Women. Tessa had hugged the books to herself and, alone and unwatched in her room, had let herself cry. It had grown easier since then, the Changing. Tessa still didn’t understand what happened inside her to make it possible, but she had memorized the series of steps the Dark Sisters had taught her, the way a blind person might memorize the number of paces it takes to walk from their bed to the door of their room. She didn’t know what was around her in the strange dark place they asked her to journey to, but she knew the pathway through it. She drew on those memories now, tightening her grip on the ragged bit of pink fabric she held. She opened her mind and let the darkness come down, let the connection that bound her to the hair ribbon and the spirit inside it—the ghostly echo of the person who had once owned it—unravel like a golden thread leading through the shadows. The room she was in, the oppressive heat, the noisy breathing of the Dark Sisters, all of it fell away as she followed the thread, as the light grew more intense around her and she wrapped herself in it as if she were wrapping herself in a blanket. Her skin began to tingle and to sting with thousands of tiny shocks. This had been the worst part, once—the part that had convinced her she was dying. Now she was used to it, and bore it stoically as she shuddered all over, from her scalp to her toes. The clockwork angel around her throat seemed to tick faster, as if in rhythm with her speeding heart. The pressure inside her skin built—Tessa gasped—and her eyes, which had been closed, flew open as the sensation built to a crescendo—and then vanished. It was over. Tessa blinked dizzily. The first moment after a Change was always like blinking water out of your eyes after submerging yourself in a bath. She looked down at herself. Her new body was slight, almost frail, and the fabric of her dress hung loose, pooling on the floor at her feet. Her hands, clasped in front of her, were pale and thin, with chapped tips and bitten nails. Unfamiliar, alien hands. “What is your name?” Mrs. Black demanded. She had risen to her feet and was looking down at Tessa with her pale eyes burning. She looked almost hungry. Tessa didn’t have to answer. The girl whose skin she wore answered for her, speaking through her the way spirits were said to speak through their mediums—but Tessa hated to think about it that way; the Change was so much more intimate, so much more frightening, than that. “Emma,” the voice that came from Tessa said. “Miss Emma Bayliss, ma’am.” “And who are you, Emma Bayliss?” The voice replied, words tumbling out of Tessa’s mouth, bringing strong images with them. Born in Cheapside, Emma had been one of six children. Her father was dead, and her mother sold peppermint water from a cart in the East End. Emma had learned to sew to bring in money when she was still a small child. Nights, she spent sitting at the little table in her kitchen, sewing seams by the light of a tallow candle. Sometimes, when the candle burned down and there was no money for another, she would go out into the streets and sit below one of the municipal gas lamps, using its light to sew by. . . . “Is that what you were doing out on the street the night you died, Emma Bayliss?” asked Mrs. Dark. She was smiling thinly now, running her tongue over her lower lip, as if she could sense what the answer would be. Tessa saw narrow, shadowy streets, wrapped in thick fog, a silver needle working by faint yellow gaslight. A step, muffled in the fog. Hands that reached out of the shadows and took hold of her shoulders, hands that dragged her, screaming, into the darkness. The needle and thread falling from her hands, the bows ripped from her hair as she struggled. A harsh voice shouting something angry. And then the silver blade of a knife flashing down through the dark, slicing into her skin, drawing out the blood. Pain that was like fire, and terror like nothing else she’d ever known. She kicked out at the man holding her, succeeding in knocking the dagger from his hand; she caught the blade and ran, stumbling as she weakened, the blood draining out of her fast, so fast. She crumpled in an alley, hearing the hissing scream of something behind her. She knew it was following her, and she was hoping to die before it reached her— The Change shattered like glass. With a cry Tessa fell to her knees, the torn little bow falling from her hand. It was her hand again—Emma had gone, like a cast-off skin. Tessa was once more alone inside her own mind. Mrs. Black’s voice came from far away. “Theresa? Where is Emma?” “She’s dead,” Tessa whispered. “She died in an alley—bled to death.” “Good.” Mrs. Dark exhaled, a sound of satisfaction. “Well done, Theresa. That was very good.” Tessa said nothing. The front of her dress was splotched with blood, but there was no pain. She knew it was not her blood; it wasn’t the first time this had happened. She closed her eyes, spinning in the darkness, willing herself not to faint. “We should have had her do this before,” said Mrs. Black. “The matter of the Bayliss girl has been bothering me.” Mrs. Dark’s reply was curt. “I wasn’t sure she was up to it. You remember what happened with the Adams woman.” Tessa knew immediately what they were talking about. Weeks ago she had Changed into a woman who had died of a gunshot wound to the heart; blood had poured down her dress and she had Changed back immediately, screaming in hysterical terror until the Sisters had made her see that she herself was unharmed. “She’s advanced wonderfully since then, don’t you think, Sister?” Mrs. Black said. “Given what we had to work with in the beginning—she didn’t even know what she was.” “Indeed, she was absolutely unformed clay,” Mrs. Dark agreed. “We have truly worked a miracle here. I can’t see how the Magister could fail to be pleased.” Mrs. Black gave a little gasp. “Does that mean—Do you think it’s time?” “Oh, absolutely, my dear sister. She’s as ready as she’ll ever be. It’s time for our Theresa to meet her master.” There was a gloating note in Mrs. Dark’s voice, a sound so unpleasant that it cut through Tessa’s blinding dizziness. What were they talking about? Who was the Magister? She watched through lowered eyelashes as Mrs. Dark jerked the silk bellpull that would summon Miranda to come and take Tessa back to her room. It appeared that the lesson was over for today. “Perhaps tomorrow,” Mrs. Black said, “or even tonight. If we told the Magister she was ready, I cannot imagine he would not hurry here without delay.” Mrs. Dark, stepping out from behind the desk, chuckled. “I understand that you’re eager to be paid for all our work, dear sister. But Theresa must not be simply ready. She must be . . . presentable as well as able. Don’t you agree?” Mrs. Black, following her sister, muttered a response that was cut short as the door opened and Miranda came in. She wore the same dull look as ever. The sight of Tessa crouched and bloody on the floor seemed to occasion no surprise in her. Then again, Tessa thought, she had probably seen far worse in this room. “Take the girl back up to her room, Miranda.” The eagerness was gone from Mrs. Black’s voice, and she was all brusqueness again. “Get the things—you know, the ones we showed you—and get her dressed and ready.” “The things . . . you showed me?” Miranda sounded blank. Mrs. Dark and Mrs. Black exchanged a disgusted look, and approached Miranda, blocking Tessa’s view of the girl. Tessa heard them whispering to her, and caught a few words—“dresses” and “wardrobe room” and “do what you can to make her look pretty,” and then finally, Tessa heard the rather cruel, “I’m not sure Miranda is clever enough to obey vague instructions of that sort, sister.” Make her look pretty. But what did they care whether she looked pretty or not, when they could force her to look any way they wanted? What did it matter what her true appearance was? And why would the Magister care? Though, it was very clear from the Sisters’ behavior that they believed he would. Mrs. Black swept from the room, her sister following behind her, as she always did. At the door Mrs. Dark paused, and looked back at Tessa. “Do remember, Theresa,” she said, “that this day—this very night—is what all of our preparation has been for.” She took hold of her skirts in both bony hands. “Do not fail us.” She let the door bang shut behind her. Tessa flinched at the noise, but Miranda, as always, seemed utterly unaffected. In all the time that she had passed in the Dark House, Tessa had never been able to startle the other girl, or surprise an unguarded expression out of her. “Come,” Miranda said. “We must go upstairs now.” Tessa rose to her feet, slowly. Her mind was whirling. Her life in the Dark House had been horrible, but she had—she realized now—grown almost used to it. She had known what to expect each day. She had known the Dark Sisters were preparing her for something, but she had not known what that something was. She had believed—naively, perhaps—that they wouldn’t kill her. Why waste all this training on her if she was only going to die? But something in Mrs. Dark’s gloating tone gave her pause. Something had changed. They had achieved what they wanted with her. They were going to be “paid.” But who was going to do the paying? “Come,” Miranda said again. “We must get you ready for the Magister.” “Miranda,” Tessa said. She spoke softly, the way she might have spoken to a nervous cat. Miranda had never answered a question of Tessa’s before, but that didn’t mean it wasn’t worth trying. “Who is the Magister?” There was a long silence. Miranda stared straight ahead, her doughy face impassive. Then, to Tessa’s surprise, she spoke. “The Magister is a very great man,” she said. “It will be an honor for you when you are married to him.” “Married?” Tessa echoed. The shock was so intense that she could suddenly see the whole room more clearly—Miranda, the blood-splattered rug on the floor, the heavy brass globe on the desk, still tilted in the position Mrs. Black had left it in. “Me? But—who is he?” “He is a very great man,” Miranda said again. “It will be an honor.” She moved toward Tessa. “You must come with me now.” “No.” Tessa backed away from the other girl, retreating until the small of her back struck painfully against the desk. She looked around desperately. She could run, but she’d never get past Miranda to the door; there were no windows, no doors to other rooms. If she hid behind the desk, Miranda would simply drag her out and haul her to her room. “Miranda, please.” “You must come with me now,” Miranda repeated; she had almost reached Tessa. Tessa could see herself reflected in the black pupils of the other girl’s eyes, could smell the faint, bitter, almost charred smell that clung to Miranda’s clothes and skin. “You must—” With a strength she didn’t know she possessed, Tessa seized the base of the brass globe on the desk, lifted it, and swung it with all her might at Miranda’s head. It connected with a sickening sound. Miranda reeled back—and then straightened. Tessa shrieked and dropped the globe, staring—the whole left side of Miranda’s face was crushed in, like a paper mask that had been smashed flat on one side. Her cheekbone was flattened, her lip mashed against her teeth. But there was no blood, no blood at all. “You must come with me now,” Miranda said, in the same flat tone she always used. Tessa gaped. “You must come—you m-must—you—you—you—yyyyyyyyyyyyy—” Miranda’s voice shuddered and broke, degenerating into a stream of gibberish. She moved toward Tessa, then jerked to the side, twitching and stumbling. Tessa turned from the desk and began to back away as the injured girl spun, faster and faster. She reeled across the room like a staggering drunk, still shrieking, and crashed into the far wall—which seemed to stun her. She collapsed to the ground and lay still. Tessa raced to the door and out into the corridor beyond, pausing only once, just outside the room, to look back. It seemed, in that brief moment, as if a thread of black smoke were rising from Miranda’s prone body, but there was no time to stare. Tessa darted down the hall, leaving the door hanging open behind her. She dashed for the stairs and hurtled up them, nearly tripping over her skirts and banging her knee painfully on one of the steps. She cried out and scrambled on, up to the first landing, where she dashed into the corridor. It stretched out ahead of her, long and curving, disappearing into shadows. As she raced down it, she saw that it was lined with doors. She paused and tried one, but it was locked, and so was the next one, and the next after that. Another set of stairs led down at the end of the hallway. Tessa raced down them and found herself in an entryway. It looked as if it had once been grand—the floor was cracked and stained marble, and high windows on either side were shielded with curtains. A little bit of light spilled through the lace, illuminating an enormous front door. Tessa’s heart leaped. She dived for the knob, seized it, and flung the door open. There was a narrow cobblestoned street beyond, with rows of terraced houses lining either side. The smell of the city hit Tessa like a blow—it had been so long since she’d breathed outside air. It was close to dark, the sky the dimming blue of twilight, obscured by smudges of fog. In the distance she could hear voices, the cries of children playing, the clop of horses’ hooves. But here the street was nearly deserted, save for a man leaning against a nearby gas lamp, reading a newspaper by its light. Tessa dashed down the steps and toward the stranger, catching him by the sleeve. “Please, sir—if you could help me—” He turned, and looked down at her. Tessa stifled a scream. His face was as white and waxy as it had been the first time she’d seen him, at the dock in Southampton; his bulging eyes still reminded her of Miranda’s, and his teeth gleamed like metal when he grinned. It was the Dark Sisters’ coachman. Tessa turned to run, but it was already too late.