This book kicked me in the feels.
I too cried through the whole second half of the book. I expected the ending to be totally ruined and I was completely wrong. I was surprised more than once by something I didn't expect, delighted continually by references to her other novels, and had my heart broken to pieces no less than three times.
(Just ask my poor husband who walked in as I was reading the Epilogue to find me sobbing uncontrollably. When he asked me what was wrong, in a concerned voice, all I could manage was, "(gasp) Will! (sob) Tessa! (gasp)")
The thing that I love about teen lit today is that it isn't restricted and "niced up" by adults who think they know what's best for their kids. (Like it was in my teens.) The thing that I love about Clare's teen lit is that when she does tackle sex, it's done with both heat and dignity. The thing that I don't like is that she feels some need to pair up every single person in the novel. It's okay for people to be single, you know.
When I started reading this series I was worried that it was just going to be a poorly done rehash of Mortal Instruments. I'm happy to say I was wrong. I won't say that it's better, but it's every bit as good. I can't recommend it enough.
Normally when I read Clare's work, I'm struck by the wit of her heroes. In Clockwork Princess, I was moved by the depth that they revealed.
"Achilles was murdered with a poisoned arrow, and Jason died alone, killed by his own rotting ship. Such is the fate of heroes, the Angel knows why anyone would want to be one." (p. 49)
"There is more to living than not dying." (p. 56)
"I would rather die and be reborn and see the sun again, than live to the end of the world without daylight." (p. 69)
"Every heart had its own melody. ... You know mine." (p. 128)
"Our hearts, they need a mirror, Tessa. We see our better selves in the eyes of those who love us. And there is a beauty that brevity alone provides." (p. 129)
"When you walk that aisle to meet him and join yourselves forever you will walk an invisible path of the shards of my heart." (p. 134)
"I love you now more desperately, this moment, than I have ever loved you before, and in an hour I will love you more than that." (p. 134)
"And now I need you to do for me what I cannot do for myself. For you to be my eyes when I do not have them. For you to be my hands when I cannot use my own. For you to be my heart when mine is done with beating." (pp. 166-167)
Ave atque vale, Will thought. Hail and farewell. He had not given much thought to the words before, had never thought about why they were not just a farewell but also a greeting. Every meeting led to a parting, and so it would, as long as life was mortal. In every meeting there was some of the sorrow of parting, but in every parting there was some of the joy of meeting as well. (p. 345)
"I will see you with the eyes of my heart." (p. 345)