Infernal Devices collage (cover and main three characters) thanks to eternally-reading over on Tumblr.
Book: The Infernal Devices: Clockwork Angel Volume One
Author: Cassandra Clare
Artist: Hyekyung Baek
Age Group: Teen
Genre: Graphic Novel, Action, Adventure, Romance, Fantasy
Keeping with my steampunk theme we jump right into The Infernal Devices: Clockwork Angel Volume One, an adaption of one of my favorite series by Cassandra Clare. Surprised it took me this long to pick up? I was never a fan of the art I’d seen of it around. This series was very close to me and my personal imagery of it. I was honestly worried it would be ruined by this graphic novel adaption. I’m here to say that each depiction might have not been exactly to my own personal image, but it was fun and pretty darn close.
I’m a huge fan of REM’s art style, so moving from that to Hyekyung Baek style was a little hard for me. I’ve also been a huge fan of Cassandra Jean’s art style, check her out, and she’s done multiple fan art pieces, so this new artist was harsh on my eyes. The front cover, I find now though, is a bit deceiving of the styling inside the cover. The actual style is pretty soft and smooth, the era based fashion and architecture is pretty spot on. I also love the way that she depicts Jem and Jessamine. The emotions expressed throughout the graphic novel are spot on, and the monster are just gruesome enough to make you cringe, but keep reading. The Silent Brothers made me shiver, as they should, and I can’t wait to see more of them throughout.
My biggest faults with the depiction is the over simplification. The Steles, Angel Blades, and tattoos are all super simplified and I feel like the artist cut corners here. This is also for not with the automans. This actually disappointed me quite a bit as some of my favorite artistic pieces from the series have extreme depictions of the tattoos, muscle definition, clothing, and so much more. I’d link one of my favorite ones at the bottom, but it is a tad risque for polite company. Instead I’ll link a couple other samples. Saying this though, the actual graphic novel has some spectacular splashes such as this one:
I’ve come to conclude that I believe what turns me off is Baek’s use of color because the black and white splashes are quite stunning.
The dialogue and progression of action is spot-on with the novel and I believe that it stops at a perfectly ominous place. Overall, I highly recommend that fans check this adaption out. I’d love to see this as a TV series, mini-series, or maybe a movie adaption eventually.
As always all opinions and views noted above are my own. If you’re thinking about buying the book then check out other reviews.
Thank you for taking the time to read this,
PS. One of the following pieces is in fact by Cassandra Jean, can you pick it out?