What: Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare & Sarah Rees Brennan & Maureen Johnson & Robin Wasserman
Who: Margaret K. McElderry Books
When: November 15th 2016
How: A copy of this novel was provided by Simon & Schuster for review via Edelweiss.
Simon Lewis has been a human and a vampire, and now he is becoming a Shadowhunter. The events of City of Heavenly Fire left him stripped of his memories, and Simon isn’t sure who he is anymore. So when the Shadowhunter Academy reopens, Simon throws himself into this new world of demon-hunting, determined to find himself again. Whomever this new Simon might be.
But the Academy is a Shadowhunter institution, which means it has some problems. Like the fact that non-Shadowhunter students have to live in the basement. At least Simon’s trained in weaponry—even if it’s only from hours of playing D&D.
Join Simon on his journey to become a Shadowhunter, and learn about the Academy’s illustrious history along the way, through guest lecturers such as Jace Herondale, Tessa Gray, and Magnus Bane. Written by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman, these moving and hilarious short stories are perfect for the fan who just can’t get enough of the Shadowhunters.
This book was a hot mess. It was almost 700 pages of pain and suffering and me wanting to put it down. Why didn’t I put it down, you might ask. Well, because Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy consists of ten novella-length stories about Simon Lewis. I thought, perhaps, there might be one (or, hopefully, more than one) novella that I actually didn’t want to burn my eyes out whilst reading.
And I was right. About two of them. One was about James Herondale, who was adorable and bookish and awkward, and who I shipped wholeheartedly with his nemesis, Matthew Fairchild. If these two aren’t in an adorable, gay AF relationship in the forthcoming prequel series I will be devastated. Because they had an adorable hate-to-love relationship, and that is one of my fave tropes.
The second was about our beautiful bi High Warlock of Brooklyn, Magnus Bane. Magnus and Alec being domestic gives me life. And they were so incredibly domestic in this novella because WARLOCK BABY. Also, Magnus’s sexuality was not erased, which I was 100% thankful for. This novella, filled with adorableness, and Magnus, and Magnus and Alec being cute together is the only reason why this burning piece of crap was rated two stars and not one.
Because, aside from that those two novellas, I detested almost every single other one (although I somewhat liked the one about Tessa and Jack the Ripper, but even that was quite boring for the most part). They were incredibly monotonous, painful to get through, and dull. I was actually excited for this book when I found out it was being released, because at the end of City of Heavenly Fire, Simon’s future is kind of up in the air. I thought that reading about him becoming a Shadowhunter would be awesome.
It was not awesome. It was nearly 700 pages of no plot, whining over Isabelle and not remembering his past, no character growth, and flashbacks of characters who I really don’t give a shit about. I don’t think I have been so bored and mentally unengaged when reading a book … ever. I was literally falling asleep during every single novella (except the two I mentioned at the beginning of this review).
In all honesty, I could not recommend this book to anyone. Perhaps the most diehard Cassie Clare fan could stomach the mess that this book was, but I find it hard to see a casual fan (such as myself) truly enjoy everything in these pages. Because Magnus’s novella was the only really saving grace in this bitter disappointment of a book.
© 2016, Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity. All rights reserved.
trigger warning: murders (graphic), torture (graphic), bullying, use of ableist language, deaths (siblings, parents, friends), discrimination, amnesia, and homophobia in this novel