Mundie Moms

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Clockwork Angel Read Along Day 4: Chapter 3 The Institute

Welcome! It's day 4 of our Clockwork Angel Read Along! Please be sure to visit our link here for our schedule, guidelines and to fill out the form to be entered to win some fabulous prizes.

Today's discussion is about Chapter 3. Tessa awakens at the Institute. We learn a bit about the Shadowhunters and their roles. We also meet Henry, Charlotte and Jasmine, as well as learn more about Tessa's unique gift.

* We don't know a whole lot about Tessa yet, but we know she's a shape changer. What do you think Tessa's dream meant when she heard her Aunt Harriet say "I tried to love you. But it wasn't easy to love a child that isn't human in the least..."?

* I love that despite this being set in the 1800's a women is running the institute, which really wasn't proper for this time period. I admire how blunt and direct Charlotte is with Tessa in telling her about the Shadowhunter world and their role in keeping the peace. What are your first impressions with Charlotte?

* Now that we know more about Tessa and her unique gift, do you think she could pose a threat to the shadowhunters if she were to fall into the wrong hands or do you think she'll become their strongest ally?

Please feel free to answer to any number of questions. There's no right or wrong answers. You're more than welcome to comment as much as you'd like. Please be sure to keep your answers SPOILER FREE, as there many first time CA readers.


  1. Well, Tessa's going to become their ally! (This is obvious even if this is your first time reading this. :D) She doesn't really pose much of a threat to them, and even ends up helping in capturing a certain someone! ;)

  2. I think Tessa's dream meant that she is afraid since she has no idea what she is. She is wondering if she is even human, and wondering if her family knew the truth.

    My first impression of Charlotte was, "I love her"! How awesome is it that a women in the 1800's is running the institute!

  3. I like Charlotte. She seems to want to to do her job well and right. She seems concerned about following the Accords and treating Tessa with kindness. I also like that she answers Tessa's questions honestly and without withholding.

  4. I think Tessa's dream might be a reflection of her own inner fears; now that Tessa knows she has a special power that she fears she is no longer human. Or, perhaps, her power manifested when she was younger and she didn't remember it?

  5. Charlotte is a very strong respected women. That is my first impression of her. Also she is very stern but also very caring and kind.

    I think tessa could be both an ally or a threat but i think she will want to help the shadow hunters i domt think she would turn against them. Plus i think she has a littl crush on will, so she wont want to hurt him.

    I think the dream ment that tessa believes because of her power it must have been hard for her family to love her, she thinks that because she can change into other people it made it hard for the people around her to accept who she really is.

  6. That line was always intrigued me! I think that this line is the beginning of Tessa starting to see herself as a monster, something no one could love, and I think that this will be a continuing theme throughout the series.
    Mhm, I love characters like Charlotte. I'm so sick about reading about helpless girls who always rely on the men in their lives to get the job done. It was about time for girls to start to kicking major booty. ;)
    Interesting...I think Tessa poses more of a threat to herself, actually. Her powers could definitely help the Shadowhunters, but if she were to turn against them? I don't think that would be good. There's just something about Tessa I can't put my finger on. I just think she's more dangerous than what meets the eye.

  7. * I bet it was really hard for her hearing that, even if it was a dream, but I think she was mixing the life she had in America with the situation she was living now. She was facing, in some way, her most deep fears.

    * I really loved the fact that a women was running the Institute as well. Charlotte seems a good person, very honest and direct (for the way she was talking to her), but at the end of the day Charlotte seems a good girl.

    * Is hard for Tessa to trust other people, because of what happened to her with the Dark Sisters, and as she said to Charlotte, she thinks that they will ask her to use her gift, but she was very relief when Charlotte said that they are not like this. Tessa is an strong, independent women, and hates to feel that people are treating her for charity or doing her favours.

  8. I loved Charlotte when we first met her! I laughed when Sophie scolded her for being too blunt. Tessa's reaction to "the help" talking like that to the head of the house also made me laugh. It's nice to see Charlotte take control of the Institute and I can't wait to see what else she does. :)

  9. *I think that the dream was happening because she could subconsciously hear the conversation between Enoch and Charlotte. I think it is hard for her to accept or acknowledge that she isn't really human, but she is a very strong person.

    *I liked how Charlotte was so forward and didn't try to sugar-coat anything for Tessa. She is obviously a very strong in charge woman
    who knows what she is doing. I could also tell that she isn't just a hard person, she does have compassion under her tough shell.

    *I was inclined to think that Tessa would become their ally. She is very nice and doesn't seem to want to do anything bad. She has trust issues for obvious reasons, but I think she just wants to do what is right in the end.

  10. I think she should hide her powers from the Clave because they could just want to use her for her powers.

  11. I love that Charlotte is a very strong willed woman and isn't afraid to speak her mind. It might be unorthodox for the time period, but it fits perfectly. I also love that the London Institute is very much family-centered in this series. In the Mortal Instruments, the New York Institute was run by the Lightwood's, but they weren't as front and center as Charlotte and Henry seem like they will be.

    Of course, Tessa's abilities could be used for either good or evil. As with most abilities, the person chooses which side they're on. Like we saw in the first chapter, in the hands of the black-hearted, she could be used differently than in the hands of the Nephilim. Where the Dark Sisters forced her to use her abilities, the Shadowhunters aren't so pushy.

    Now that she has shown them what she can do, I think in time, she will learn to trust them more and offer her abilities in helping them search for her brother or do other Shadowhuntery things. She is going to be the Master of Disguise.

  12. I love your comments on Tessa's dream! I totally agree with you guys have all said. I think it's a combination of her inner fears, and her over hearing Enoch and Charlotte talk.

    When I first read CA, I at this point was still uncertain about Tessa. Meaning I wasn't sure if she was going to end up using her gift for good or if she was going to be forced to use that against those who are helping her.

  13. Tessa's dream....was her mind trying to come to term with what she is learning about herself...she thinks she's a monster...unloveable

    I love Charlotte....trying to fit into a mans world then or now yet she is still kind and caring to Tessa

    Tessa's ability is a double edged sword...she could be so evil or their greatest ally...will all depend on Tessa


  14. I think that Tessa's dream speaks to all of our inner most fear, that someone we love and consider family would turn against us. No one wants to be unlovable. And unfortunately there are people who feel that way.

    I love Charlotte. I think she personifies the statement that "Behind every man, is a woman." Which basically says that it's really the woman in power. I think Charlotte knows that she's great at what she does, but society and it's opinions won't allow her to be great.

    Tessa's ability is a blessing and a curse. On one side, she could use it to solve murders and help people. But on the other side, she could be totally selfish and use it to further herself financially and any other way she sees fit.

  15. i definitely like Charlotte. Its always good to see as powerful female character in a book. I am pretty sure Tessa is a warlock ( because she makes that small cameo in city of glass). And it definitely would be a problem if she fell into the wrong hands

  16. Tessa'a dream freaked me out when I first read it, having read TMI and knowing how scary the Silent Brothers looked as soon as it said "stitched lips" I was immediately freaking out that it was some demon! But as everyone as said, it was obvious that she was just creating a mental picture for her worst fears and also having bits of Charlotte's and Brother Enoch's conversation thrown into the mix as well.

    Charlotte is such a dainty little thing, when we are first introduced and she is described you get this image of a small fragile little girl. But then her tone! As I read her dialogue I could hear her voice in my head, and he sounded like a mother. That was my view on her, she is like the little mother of the institute but you don't want to underestimate her! I bet she'd kickass, haha!

    I'm going to answer this as though I have never read the books before...
    Tessa could be their greatest ally because as I said before, she is the perfect spy! But if she is caught by 'The Majester' I think she could be their downfall. Her ability is unique and so has no limits—that we know of—so who's to say she doesn't have more to her? I think she would make a deadly weapon.

  17. I agree with you guys that Tessa's dream is a result of her fears. I believe Tessa will be a great alley for the Shawdow hunters, if she is ever used against them, it will be against her will.
    I liked Charlotte right away. She seemed very kind and a strong person.

  18. I think Tessa's dream is a mix of fear, her latest experiences and the uncertainty about her future and Nates.
    I liked Charlotte instantly, although she is quite straight forward (and English people are like that, hello to my mother in law!) we can still feel through her words that she care and that she is a good person. Despite her young age and gender she shows character and determination and if I were Tessa I would have trusted Charlotte too.

  19. I dont know what to think. Her dream seems to just be fear. But Cassie had majorly suprised us before.
    My first impression of Charlotte? After reading the book, I decided Charlotte is a person I want to be. She is strong, independent, smart, nice, kind, is a great person, and a bunch of other things. Charlotte is just a beautiful person and one of my favorite characters Cassie has created.
    As for the last question, Tessa could become a serious threat. She is skilled and one of a kind. I don't think she will though. The shadowhunters of the institute care about her and want to keep her safe. Because of these conditions, I don't think anything would ever make her a danger.

  20. I think the dream she had of her Aunt was displaying her fear of what she has learned about herself. Now she is going to be questioning her past.
    I love Charlotte. She stuck me as a woman being professional in her job. She comes off blunt because of wanting to do her job well. As you read you learn that she is the one in charge and acting mother to everyone.
    Tessa can definitely pose a threat to who ever she decides to be against. With what I see to be Tessa's personality, she will side with the ones who are doing good for others. But saving her brother is important so that will have to influence any decisions she makes.

  21. Yeah okay, I admit it! I'm pleasantly surprised by this book! I'm loving the atmosphere and the characters. I have a feeling about one in particular that I can't wait to see if something happens! ;)

    I definitely like Charlotte! She seems really like the no nonsense type and Henry seems like a lovable guy! So far so good!

  22. I too love Charlotte running the instate. She has a quality I think that a women would need in this times to be in charge. Very frank and firm but kind at the same time. I will admit I thoughtnshe was older, but I guess that is what is trying to be portrayed, that she is wise and brave beyond her years. I'm very keen to see her character develop in CP and see how she handles the challenges to her authority.

    I never thought Tessa would be a threat to the shadow hunters. I think that even if she didn't stay with them or make friends with them, she still would want to do good in the world. And after her time with the dark sisters I think she wouldn't want to be on "the other side" again.

  23. I think Tessa had that dream because she could hear Charlotte and Brother Enoch discussing what she was. I think she heard her Aunt say those things because she was struggling to come to terms with finding out she wasn't human.

    I loved Charlotte from the moment she was introduced. It's nice to see a woman in charge despite the time period. It also highlighted how different Shadowhunter customs were from human customs.

    When I first read Clockwork Angel I thought that Tessa could be a strong ally to the Shadowhunters but that there was the possibility for her to have major trust issues with them because of what happened to her with the Dark Sisters.

  24. I never thought Tessa would pose a threat to the Shadowhunters. Maybe because she seemed to be an honest and caring person. Look what she went through for her brother's safety.

  25. I think Tessa could become a great ally to the Shadowhunters. Her gift can not only get her access to many places, but she can also see inside the minds of other people. This could really be invaluable!

    I think the fact that the person who heads the Institute is a woman is great, if not a little contradictory with what I've learned about the Shadowhunters in the MI series. For example, in modern times, we learned that the Shadowhunters still married young and often had arranged marriages, and that they aren't exactly that accepting of "alternative lifestyles" -- as with the issues that Alec faced when confronting his sexuality. Despite this, however, it seems that even back in the 1800's, they at least had some equality of the sexes.

  26. I think Tessa will become the shadowhunters strongest ally with her unique gift. She isn't an evil person, and I think she'll be willing to help them once she trusts them. I hope they help her discover the good she can do with her gift.

  27. Tessa is part human and something else. I don't think she has any demon in her though.

    I love Charlotte! I think she is such a great character! I love that she is head of the institute like Maryse is in the MI series.

    Tessa could be both. It depends on what happens.

    There is one thing I would do if I were Tessa. I would take something of Wills and transform into him to see what makes him tick. She is more than a shape changer. She can see into peoples' minds, which is an angelic power I think. She could see into Will's mind and see what is going on with him.

  28. I love how the institute is run by a woman in the 1800's it's so faux pas lol. My first impression of Charlotte was that I really liked her. She's a very strong female character. I do have to say from the way she acted I pictured her much older than she actually is though lol. I love how she interacts with Henry too.

  29. * We don't know a whole lot about Tessa yet, but we know she's a shape changer. What do you think Tessa's dream meant when she heard her Aunt Harriet say "I tried to love you. But it wasn't easy to love a child that isn't human in the least..."?

    Hm, probably by the fact that Tessa was never fully human? And Aunt Harriet was afraid of her turning out into a monster, so probably her love was always on a thin line.

    * I love that despite this being set in the 1800's a women is running the institute, which really wasn't proper for this time period. I admire how blunt and direct Charlotte is with Tessa in telling her about the Shadowhunter world and their role in keeping the peace. What are your first impressions with Charlotte?

    Charlotte strike me as a motherly grandmother, haha. She's sweet and gentle. Caring for others, I think she's a perfect person to run the institute.

    * Now that we know more about Tessa and her unique gift, do you think she could pose a threat to the shadowhunters if she were to fall into the wrong hands or do you think she'll become their strongest ally?

    I believe both. Her gift is very unique and she passes up for a human for looks very well. She can be a great spy and a difficult target. Her power gives her many leverage to things.

  30. I think Tessa's dream was built on her fear about the mystery of what she was. She didn't know and subconsciously, she was listening to Charlotte and the Silent Brother discussing how they weren't sure either. I felt like it was her fear driving the dream. As if even the person who loved her the most wasn't sure she was worthy of that love.
    Charlotte is strong and has her hands full. She has a lot of responsibility and seems to handle it well. There is a lot more to her than you get in the glimpse of this chapter though, so it's kind of hard to judge from just this first meeting.
    I think that in the wrong hands Tessa's power would be a weapon. That's probably why the magister wanted her for his own in the first place. Especially given what Charlotte said about marriage. Seems Tessa needs to be kept safe for more reasons than just her personal safety. Almost skipped to Chapter 5 tonight after reading Chapter 4 for tomorrow. But I was good and stopped. :)

  31. i think tessa's dream just showed how frightened she was - she was strong and didn't collapse into hopelessness when she was holed up in the dark sister's place, but now she's out of their clutches, she is starting to realise that there is something strange about her. she's never experienced anything like this in her life, and now she has to bear the weight of being with people she doesn't really know that well and the fact that someone called the magister wants her. and the dream also tells us that tessa is more than human - or less than human, whichever way people prefer to say it.

    i love charlotte. when she's first introduced, you immediately know that she's strong and just as good as any man. it's very interesting to know that she runs the institute, when she has a husband and especially during the time period, men would be expected to have more responsibilities. but that just further backs up the knowledge that charlotte is responsible, and trusted by the clave.

    yeah, definitely tessa could be something threatening to the shadowhunters if she was gone. i mean, that's pretty obvious because the magister wants her! and the magister intended tessa to be 'made' for his purpose.. the shadowhunters don't know tessa fully yet, and i think tessa herself is unaware of her full potential of her gift, because she is still so new to it. and of course the fact that the shadow hunters rarely encounter something like tessa and her ability. however, perhaps later in the book or series, tessa will do something against the shadow hunters - it could be accidental, she could be manipulated into it, kidnapped, and so on. there's so much that can still happen.

  32. Tessa could definitely be a threat, but I think she'll work with the Shadowhunters.

  33. Cassandra has a trend for unconventional gender roles for her female characters. I like it that Charlotte is the head of the institute as much as I like that Isabelle Lightwood can't cook.

  34. When i heard her aunt say she couldnt love anything that isnt human i thought that she wasnt actually her aunt because she didnt love her and that Tessa was a demon of some sort.

    About Charlotte i absolutly loved her she really seemed like a nice person, and she didnt waste time and got down to business i admire that about her.

    Lastly i think she would be a wonderfull ally to the shadow hunters because she doesnt really know much about the downworld so if she doent know about it how can she do harm? And also since shes learning from them and not from the dark sisters she wont really learn how to do much harm, or break the accords.

  35. I think Aunt Harriet did try to love Tessa but I think Tessa has a true form? which makes aunt harriet loves her less.

    Charlotte is the bad ass girl with the authority, she has the leadership quality that anyone would admire. Her attitude is fierce and straight forward, thats what I admire most about Charlotte.

    I do believe that her powers will conflict with the rules of the clave because she's a downworlder who is inside the institute. But non the less I think Tessa will be a valuable ally to the shadowhunters, her powers will be of great help when in the good hands.

  36. * I think it might be a memory of some sort that she’d forgotten, and Aunt Harriet knew that Tessa wasn’t quite human. I think it's possible that Tessa showed her ability when she was young, and she merely forgot.

    * A very straightforward and blunt woman! I like Charlotte so far.

    * I think she could be a good ally. Even if Tessa fell into the wrong hands, I don’t think she’d make much of an effort to help out the “bad” people (whoever they are).

  37. "I tried to love you. But it wasn't easy to love a child that isn't human in the least..."?I think that this was something her aunt said to Tessa when she was ill with fever, before she died.Perhaps Aunt Harriet knew more about Tessa ability and never shared it with her.

  38. Tessa's dream had to mean that her Aunt knew about her gift and most likely about the shadowhunters and Downworld. Tessa's aunt still loved her enough because she took care of Tessa.

    I love Charlotte. She is very tough and no nonsense but she just wants to prove that's she can make decisions and run the Institute as well or better then the men. She has a lot to prove being a woman which makes her stronger.

    Tessa could be a huge threat if she was in the wrong hands. Not only can she shape change but she is learning about the shadowhunters in general becausefor now she is staying at the Institute. So she has a lot of information that plenty would want to get.

  39. - The first thing that came to my mind was that instead of a dream that could be a memory, and that her aunt knew everything. But then again, if that was a memory I don't see why Tessa wasn't worried about it earlier. It could also be her subconscious playing with her mind and showing one of her fears, to not be accepted by the ones she loves because of what she is (I know her aunt is dead, but hey our fears have funny ways of presenting themselves).

    - I was surprised and pleased to that Charlotte was running the institute. I thought it was curious because of the time period, but great. I like that she's so strong, kind and smart and keeps everyone in check.

    - It depends on her choice and/or the enemies of the Shadowhunters, but she can be both. I like the idea of her being a strong ally of the Shadowhunters.

    And I wanted to add, I LOVE HENRY! He's so funny, and I like his passion for inventions and how he's always distracted haha, and I like that he's married to Charlotte, she can keep him on his feet. AND I love that's the one who created most of the artifacts the Shadowhunters use in TMI :')

  40. I was curious about what Brother Enoch said, about her not having a demon's mark, but then again he called her "Eidolon" and if I'm not mistaken we learned in TMI that is a type of demon. I really want to know what she is.

    @YA Book Queen
    "I think it's possible that Tessa showed her ability when she was young, and she merely forgot."

    That's a good theory, and it would be interesting if that had happened.

    I like that too!

    @Melissa Douthit
    "There is one thing I would do if I were Tessa. I would take something of Wills and transform into him to see what makes him tick. She is more than a shape changer. She can see into peoples' minds, which is an angelic power I think. She could see into Will's mind and see what is going on with him."

    When Tessa transformed into Jessamine I thought of that too. I think it would be a violation to Will's privacy, but I hope there are some circumstances that require this to happen in Clockwork Prince. I WANT TO KNOW WHAT'S GOING ON WITH WILL.

  41. Aunt Harriet seemed to know what Tessa was, by what she said in her delirium in Tessa's dream. I think her family at least had an idea what she was, but never told her. This is a little sad and unfortunate for her, since at least understanding that she wasn't human would have been important if not useful at some point.

    First impression of Charlotte: Kindhearted, caretaker, matronly, brutally honest, and genuine. She's someone I'd like to have known or be friends with.

    Regarding Tessa's relationship with the Shadowhunters with her gifts, I'm not sure what use they could find for her at the moment. Tessa still needs to figure out the fine workings of her gifts before others can really utilize them, so for now it's just a unique part of her already strong character and personality.

  42. I had forgotten all about Tessa's dream. When I re-read it I couldn't believe that I had glossed over it before! This is why I'm glad I'm reading it! The audiobook was fabulous but I am sure there were times I zoned out. I really want to know what Aunt Harriet really knew versus what Tessa thinks. Did her aunt really say that while caught up in the fever? Is Tessa's mind playing tricks on her? We know Tessa isn't human but what did her aunt know?!?!?

    I too love that Charlotte runs things. She seems compassionate but blunt. I can imagine she has to be to keep the place running and to prove her ability (since she is a woman.) I also love the ways she interacts with Henry.