Sunday, October 1, 2017

Review: Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy pt. 1

Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy
Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, Robin Wasserman
collection of Shadowhunter stories!

Simon Lewis has been a human and a vampire, and now he is becoming a Shadowhunter. But the events of City of Heavenly Fireleft him stripped of his memories, and Simon isn’t sure who he is anymore. He knows he was friends with Clary, and that he convinced the total goddess Isabelle Lightwood to go out with him…but he doesn’t know how. And when Clary and Isabelle look at him, expecting him to be a man he doesn’t remember…Simon can’t take it.
So when the Shadowhunter Academy reopens, Simon throws himself into this new world of demon-hunting, determined to find himself again. His new self. 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. And that differences—like being a former vampire—are greatly looked down upon. At least Simon is 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. These ten short stories give an epilogue to the Mortal Instruments series and provide glimpses of what’s in store in the Dark Artifices.
If you can, read this in the order in which it was meant to be- right after TMI and before TDA. AND PREPARE TO DEAL WITH FEELINGS.

It had never occurred to me how weird Simon would feel now. I remember my utter heartbreak when Simon lost his memories, feeling like he died in a way. I've since been healed, having read Lady Midnight before these and seeing all the great things he has going on there. But here I forgot about all that and just felt for Simon. Not knowing who you are, being told all these great and terrible things - friends you've had who died, your mother's betrayal, a best friend you had since you were six but don't know now. That you are a hero, but don't know how or why. That you loved a girl and she loves you but you just can't believe it.

But don't worry, there isn't much time to dwell on that. We get mercifully thrown right into Simon being Simon - geeky and mundane and utterly hilarious. Shadowhunter Academy is no Hogwarts, and it makes me laugh that everyone expected it to be. SA reminded me more of my own boarding school experience - rodents, bad food, teachers you grow close to and friends you originally hate but then are your sisters-in-arms for life.

The story of Tobias Herondale and SA students being sent to carry down the Law on a rogue vampire. Expect cameos. Heartfelt talk about following the law and doing what's right. Catarina Loss is a Boss. Clary is a sweetie.

Simon and George are the cutest roommates. I love George - his innocence, his fierce love, his ridiculous comments. Jace shows up - not gonna lie, Jace's lines throughout this whole book were a bit forced. Obviously he's grown and developed, but I miss his olden-days real sass. It's possible the writing may feel different because CC is not the only writer.

CUE LONDON 1888. The real reason you (by which I mean I) read shadowhunter novels. To experience Will Herondale. Ahhhh. Such love. Such happiness. Probably first time I properly loled this read. Back at the London Institute. Wessa as parents, which made me swell with happiness and broke my heart at the same time. Cecily and Gabriel. WILL AND GABRIEL AT IT AGAIN. Little James. Jessamine cameo that practically made me cry. Historical fiction at it's finest.

Marisol is cool and a badass. While I love her, I wish the writers had taken more time to flesh her out a bit more. Show us all of her, not just a one-dimensional badass female - it seemed too agenda central and not real enough.
MORE HILARIOUS WESSA PARENTING. And William Herondale. James is adorable and weird.

"Oh, Mr. Herondale!"
Shadowhunter ladies of many ages said that to his father: three words that were both sigh and summons. Other fathers were called "Mister" without the "Oh" prefix. 
 I, like James, didn't quite get Matthew Fairchild at first and like him, mistrusted him. I was so happy with what came out of that. Loved watching James grow into himself even if only a bit, take a stand, make friends. Literally cannot wait until TLH.
And Ragnor Fell. Man, I missed him. Loved how he handles the shadowhunter kids.

K this one was not my favorite but truly fascinating. Robert and Isabelle come to guest speak at SA and we get a story from the Circle's time at the Academy. It was SO COOL to finally get to understand Valentine's influence, the dynamics the members had with each other. It's creepily similar to Nazi Germany in miniature, or Dumbledore and Grindelwald. There was also an interesting plot-twist that really kept me on my toes. The Evil We Love is definitely a page-turner out of all the stories.

Will be back soon with the other 5 stories. If you haven't yet, READ THEM ASAP SO WE CAN TALK SPOILERS. Have a wonderful week!

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