Title: Tales From The Shadowhunter Academy [10 Kindle Novellas]
Author: Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman.
Genre: Young Adult / Fantasy
Description: After living as a Mundane and a Vampire, Simon never thought he would become a Shadowhunter, but today he begins his training at Shadowhunter Academy.
Disclaimer: Review contains spoilers
Instead of doing 10 different reviews for all of the novellas I decided to combine them all into one review and split it into 10 sections. [I wrote the review immediately after I read each novella]
Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy | Rating: ★★★★☆
I’m so happy that Simon has a book focusing just on him and everything that happened after The Mortal Instruments. Simon is one of my favourite The Shadowhunter Chronicles characters and I’ve been dying to finally read Tales From the Shadowhunter Academy. Novella 1: Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy did not disappoint! Simon is written so beautifully in this first novella as you can see his struggle with his memories as he tries to get on with everyday life.
I loved the references to other characters and events into the other novels. I screamed when George Lovelace mentioned the 1800s and Jessamine without saying her name. The reference to the name Jonathan and the big war. And the sad references that Catarina and Simon shared of their lost friends. Both had me sobbing over character deaths that I’m still not over years on from the ending of The Mortal Instruments.
I love that Simon hasn’t lost his humour even though he did lose his memories. The scene with the possum is just iconic and one I’ll never forget. I’m glad Simon stood up to the Shadowhunters about Downworlders and how they should be treated equally as them because he’s been a Downworlder, some of his friends were/are Downworlders, and he knows that not all of them are bad. I’m so ready for the George / Simon friendship.
I’m so glad we finally get to see Catarina Loss! I freaking love her already. I’m always a sucker for the Warlocks. The fact she mentioned Ragnor Fell broke my heart. They were such dear friends and I just wished that he lived. He deserved to live and deserved to be there alongside her (much like many other characters).
I definitely cannot wait to read the next one!
The Lost Herondale | Rating: ★★★★★
This one was definitely better than the first novella! There was so much to love about it.
George Lovelace. He’s too precious for this world, I love how he stood up for the mundanes and said how because they aren’t strong like the Shadowhunters at the Academy how could they know going into this task with the vampire how they’d be safe and I’m glad that he spoke up about even though he only got shut down. I love the ongrowing friendship George has with Simon.
Jon Cartwright. He was okay at first but now he’s such a dick I don’t like him and it’s all because Simon stood up for the Downworlders. Is it a common theme for Jonathans to be dicks? When he said “like he cares about anyone but himself” to Simon I just wanted to punch him in the face because Simon has sacrificed so much for the Shadowhunters and a dick like Jon doesn’t get to treat him this way. I’m so glad that Lazlo Balogh put Jon in his place because he needs to remember where he stands.
Scarsbury. Yep definitely don’t like him. He should be nicer to the mundanes not everyone gets the “blessing” of being born with Shadowhunter blood, he should be grateful that these mundanes have come to the Academy to help them now their Shadowhunter numbers are down because of the Dark War. Like this is the Mundanes first time in something that is so advanced and some of them are like 13 years old. The only thing I can think that Scarsbury is doing with this mission is to eliminate the weak ones now before the suffer at the hands of Ascending.
I feel so bad for Simon first he has to go through not having memories of most of his life and now everyone is ganging up on him and saying that he’s making it up. Let me protect you Simon you don’t need any of these dicks.
“Isabelle. It was always Isabelle.” The Sizzy feels. It breaks my heart when Simon keeps saying how everyone is looking at him as the person he used to be and not the person he is now like they’re all expecting him to suddenly remember everything. I just want to tell Simon that he’s still the same person even if he can’t remember any of it or only remembering chunks of it. Everyone still loves him no matter what.
Time for some #FlashBackFriday. TOBIAS HERONDALE. My child. I loved Tobias even before I read this novella and the reasoning behind this is because I fell in love with Cassandra Jean’s drawing of him. If you know me well you’ll know that I don’t fall easily for Herondales. A lot of the fandom will tell you either Jace or Will are their favourite characters but that’s not the case for me. I was shocked when I read that he was a Herondale, I couldn’t believe that I had fallen for a Herondale. Anyway. Immediately when I read Lazlo’s story about what happened to Tobias Herondale I thought they’ve got this wrong haven’t they. The Clave is covering up something like they always do. I was right. Thanks to Catarina Loss. Lazlo’s story says that Tobias ranaway from his duty and because of this they had to punish his wife, HIS PREGNANT WIFE, because he was not there to accept punishment. The Clave is freaking brutal I cannot believe they would stoop this low. Actually I can. The real reason for Tobias running away from his duty is because a Warlock made him lose his mind and The Clave decided to ignore this factor and still punish his pregnant wife. Thank God Catarina was there to save the day. Catarina helped deliver the baby early yet made The Clave believe that they were still killing a pregnant woman. “The Law is hard, but it is The Law” I hate this I hate this I hate this.
Simon and a bow and arrow: Sign me up! At first I thought the vampire that they were going on a mission for was going to be Maureen but then I remembered that she died in The Mortal Instruments (thankfully). I still can’t figure out who this vampire was though, she definitely knew Simon.
I think my favourite thing about this one is how Simon is starting to identify what is wrong with The Clave’s laws and how they need and should be changed. Even if they don’t believe him. Plus it was really nice to see Catarina and Simon getting along and sharing things. Plus the Climon moment at the end! I loved it.
Bring on The Whitechapel Fiend
The Whitechapel Fiend | Rating: ★★★★★
It’s going to be really hard to top this one honestly. This one was like a breath of fresh air, like coming home after a long period of time. You’re probably wondering what the heck I’m on about but out of all the series’ in The Shadowhunter Chronicles you should know that The Infernal Devices is my all time favourite. This is why this one is my favourite so far.
Ever heard of Jack The Ripper? Spoiler alert: He was actually a 5 year old demon girl. And the people who took down this demon? Brother Zachariah (aka Jem Carstairs), Tessa Gray, Cecily Herondale, Will Herondale, Gabriel Lightwood, and Jessamine Lovelace. Flashback to my wonderful The Infernal Devices characters. Before I dive back into the flashback verse I will talk about modern day first.
I love the reference to Simon’s band and how one of their names was Fun Academy. Simon’s band’s names are so iconic I love them. And “Simon paused for a moment to recognise the fact that “snakes don’t need keys” was a good album title” made me laugh so loud because of course this would be something Simon thought of during this situation. The Eye Spy game between Simon and George was so cute. George needs to be protected and I love how their bond has gotten so deep that even when Simon doesn’t say something George can read his thoughts and understand what he’s thinking.
The walking on the branch tree and jumping off reminded me of that scene in Deadpool where he’s fangirling over the woman doing a “superhero landing”. I love that Jace was brought into it so we could see more Jimon friendship and more of Jace’s cockiness. I do love the Jimon banter that goes on between the two of them
Side note: God Bless Catarina and the hiding of that awful soup.
Simon and his damn Lightwood problem. What the heck happened between Alec and Simon because honestly I cannot remember to save the life of me. I guess, much like Simon, I’m going to have to wait and find out.
NOW ONTO THE AWESOME BIT: The Flashback.
Another thing you should know about me is that Jem Carstairs is my all time favourite character and my OTP (One True Paring) is Jem Carstairs and Tessa Gray, otherwise known as Jessa. It was so nice to read about the old squad again because honestly I’ve missed them so much. It’s nice to see that neither Gabriel or Will have changed since the last time I saw them. Every time Jem was mentioned I felt like crying because Jem is my child, my angel, my everything.
“There were few people in the world who understood how much Will and Jem had loved each other, did love each other and how much Will missed him.” THE HERONSTAIRS FEELS. I’M CRYING. THEY LOVE EACH OTHER SO MUCH.
“Jem was still holding her hand. I called for James, she thought, and he came.” DO YOU HEAR THAT? IT’S THE SOUND OF ME CRYING! The Jessa feels. I will never not be over these two I cannot. She was calling for her son James, yet she was also calling for the man she loves, would always love because there was apart of Jem that could reassure her. I’m sobbing.
“Will had his arms around her and her hand was in Jem’s. That was enough to keep her breathing.” MORE CRYING. The OT3 of the century.
“Tessa stepped down and went over to a man, who kissed her lightly on the cheek. He was slender, and very elegant, and dressed in black and white. His black hair hand one single streak in it, completing the dichromatic look.” JEM JEM JEM JEM JEM JEM JEM. He’s such a gentleman and it’s so lovely to see that he’s still such a precious cinnamon roll. God I love him.
And lastly: Simon’s Letter. I’m sobbing at the Sizzy feels and laughing at the Jimon moments. I just love Simon and I love how he’s trying to become someone who can make himself, Izzy, and everyone else proud. Simon you deserve to come out of this with all the love and support. You definitely have mine!
Nothing But Shadows | Rating: ★★★★☆
I loved this one, I’m glad that I finally got an insight into some of the main characters that would feature in Clare’s next series The Last Hours. I knew because of James’ parents that he would be no ordinary Shadowhunter because of Tessa’s demon blood but I could never have expected him to be able to turn into a Shadow. It makes me think what ability does Lucie Herondale have.
I love Matthew Fairchild, at first he kind of reminded me of how a Herondale is but it was soon revealed that he was only acting the way he was because he wanted to be home with his father, Henry Branwell. I’m glad Matthew and James are going to be Parabatai because I just love their friendship already.
I’m glad Catarina Loss is trusting Simon with all of these stories that she’s encountered over the years. I’m so happy that we’ve got to read about Ragnor Fell again. And that Simon is now thinking about who he would want to be Parabatai. Even though I already know who it will be (I was spoiled sadly) and it’s pretty obvious. It was nice of George to say that he would ask Simon to be his Parabatai.
The Evil We Love | Rating: ★★★★☆
I loved this one, it made me feel a lot of feelings. This one focused on Robert Lightwood and his days in The Circle. From this novella I got a very aromantic vibe from Robert Lightwood. Maybe that’s why he and Maryse never worked out and the fact that he had some feelings for his then Parabatai Michael Wayland.
I’ve always known that Valentine Morgenstern was a brutal man but even back in the early days of The Circle he was b r u t a l. Honestly at first I thought we were going to be reading about how Valentine broke his Parabatai bond with Lucian Graymark (now known as Luke Garroway) but we didn’t. This novella focused on Robert Lightwood aiding Valentine in gaining information from a very old werewolf. The way Valentine treated this werewolf was disgusting. And I think it was at this moment that Robert started to notice the error in his ways in deciding to follow Valentine and his mission.
Before getting to the end this novella made me start disliking Isabelle Lightwood because she was treating Simon terribly. Now I know that it was a game, which Robert orchestrated to see if the students would come to one of the teachers if they knew one of their fellow classmates was breaking the school rules (and the Law).
The ending was really nice I’m sad that Isabelle never opened the letter but I’m glad that she and Simon are starting to work things out and are becoming friends. I think both of them need this because they’ve spent their time apart and it hasn’t really worked out and so becoming friends could probably help resolve most of their problems. Plus I will always be Team Sizzy.
Pale Kings and Princes | Rating: ★★★★☆
When I think The Clave can’t shock me anymore they come back with something else. The treatment of Helen Blackthorn in this novella was utterly disgusting. She risked her life in The Mortal Instruments during the Dark War but they don’t care about that the only thing they care about is the fact that she is half faerie and that her mother was the Seelie Queen. I really wanted to dive into the book and protect Helen from all the torment she was getting from the students, teachers etc at the academy.
I’m glad Simon and Isabelle had more time together and that they have started to rekindle their romance. That kiss was epic. It made me laugh that Isabelle took relationship advice from Jace. Like really Isabelle? Jace really? Jace and Simon are like polar opposites so it should have been obvious from the start that the date wasn’t going to go very well.
Awkward Simon is my favourite he’s so adorable when he doesn’t know how to react around Isabelle. I really hope Simon (and Isabelle) can do something to help Helen or at least make her a bit happier.
It was nice to hear Helen talk about her girlfriend Aline and how they are planned to get married. I cannot wait to read it because those two deserve the world. They deserve to be happy I just wish I could save them from that horrid island.
Bitter of Tongue | Rating: ★★★★★
Helen and Mark Blackthorn deserve better than this. I’m in tears. I loved this novella and I loved the actions that Simon took in this one.
George is so precious and needs to be protected I’m glad that Simon is there for him and that they’re friends. Him being lead in the mission I don’t think was a good idea because of what happened but because of George being in charge we got to meet Mark.
Mark Blackthorn. He doesn’t know anything about what is happening with Helen and Aline and I’m so glad that Simon kept it to himself rather than burdening more sorrow onto Mark’s shoulders. The fact that the first thing he asked Simon was if he was there to take him home broke my heart. I’m glad he believes that Helen and Aline are home with the rest of the Blackthorns and taking care of them. I’m glad he has a tiny bit of happiness in the horrid place that he is in. I hope, for the love of god I hope, that in one of The Dark Artifices books the Blackthorns and Emma go after him and Heline because they need to be with their family. The Mark / Isabelle / Simon team up was so great. I love the three of them I just wish they’d taken Mark with them.
Simon standing up for the Downworlders and announcing to his classmates that they need to change was the best part of this whole thing. How he used his knowledge on what just happened with Mark and how they all need to look at Downworlders as equals because Simon knows what it’s like to be one. And it’s not nice the way the Shadowhunters see themselves as superior to them. They can’t help what they are just like how the Shadowhunters can’t.
The Heline wedding. I’m so happy that they got at least one happy day with their families. I was sobbing when Simon told Helen what Mark had said when they were together. I’m glad that Simon told her because it made her so happy to know. Protect the Blackthorn twins 2kforever
The Fiery Trail | Rating: ★★★★★
I loved loved loved and loved this one. This novella gave me so many Clary/Simon feels (I’ve always lowkey been on the Climon train). I kind of saw this coming from a mile off, but I’m so glad that it was happening even though predictable. Climon are going to be Parabatai!
It was so nice to have Jem, Magnus, Catarina, Clary, Julian, and Emma in this novella as well as all of the little cameos in Simon’s hallucination. Much like Simon I didn’t expect Magnus to serve both Clary and Simon the water from Lake Lyn. I found moments in Simon’s hallucination a bit harsh, like how he saw Jordan covered in blood. I wasn’t happy to see Maureen again like please stay dead. Thankfully Simon always chooses Clary, hence why they are destined to be Parabatai.
I’m so glad that I finally got to read how the Parabatai ceremony takes place, even if it was with my two new favourite characters and OTP. I feel like Julian Blackthorn and Emma Carstairs are very similar to Clary and Simon in one way but I also feel like they’re destined for something more. Whereas Clary never had romantic feelings for Simon I feel like for Jemma their feelings go both ways but because of what happened during the Dark War both jumped to the best case scenario to make sure that they’d never be parted again, which is become Parabatai. This novella definitely has me excited to dive into Lady Midnight after I’ve finished the last two novellas.
Born to Endless Nights | Rating: ★★★★★
THIS ONE WAS DEFINITELY MY FAVOURITE (alongside The Whitechapel Fiend). It’s also the longest one yet. I love love love love loved this one. There was so much Malec.
Little Blueberry aka Max Lightwood-Bane. I’m so happy that Malec are starting a family and what a great way to start one. Max Lightwood-Bane is going to grow up and have such a loving family and I just want to cry at the perfection that is Malec. Every time I read something about Malec and now the fact that they’ve got a Warlock child there’s always that part at the back of my head reminding me that it’s not always going to be the three of them and it breaks my heart every time. I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like for Alec as he grows old and his significant other and his child will not.
Raphael Santiago. There was so many references at my precious asexual vampire and I just I want to cry because he didn’t deserve his fate. He deserved to live. And that letter to Ragnor Fell had me in tears because neither of them ever got to have their Spanish lessons.
WE FINALLY FOUND OUT THE BEEF THAT’S BETWEEN SIMON AND ALEC. Turns out there is none, mainly it was Jace trying to stir up something between Simon and Alec. The reason that Alec never said anything to Simon and seemed off to him was because he didn’t know what to say. Simon saved Alec’s family and he didn’t know how he could repay him. He felt guilty. And I think that’s the sweetest thing ever. I’m glad I finally know what was going on between them because it was getting on my nerves.
I loved Magnus and Simon’s talk about what his chosen Shadowhunter name would be (Sadly I know what he chooses and why he chooses it, #when you get spoiled by the author). And honestly there was a theory going around that he would choose “Daylighter” as his Shadowhunter name. And if I didn’t know what he chooses I would also have thought he might choose that.
Angels Twice Descending | Rating: ★★★★★
I’M AN EMOTIONAL WRECK RIGHT NOW. WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY????????? WHY CASSIE WHY?
Before I even picked up this series I thought Cassie would kill Simon whilst he Ascends but luckily that didn’t happen. But she did have to kill off someone. Out of all the mundanes that could have died she picked the purest of them all. George Lovelace. You will be missed my precious cinnamon roll. You deserved better.
As I read this one I found my heart pounding through every page turn because I was so scared of what was going to happen. Much like Simon I was furious over the fate of George and found myself sobbing over it.
I’m so happy that 1) Simon honoured his brother and chose his Shadowhunter name and 2) That Simon got to see both Jessamine and George together. I’m so glad George had a funeral and is buried at the London Institute. Maybe now he can be at peace.
I’m happy that Simon got his memories back because I feel like without them there would always be a divide between him and the rest of them. At least now he knows every brave thing that he is done and maybe it can help him be the best Shadowhunter he can be
Goodbye George Lovelace
Goodbye Simon Lewis. Welcome Simon Lovelace