Hello, I just completed Tales from Shadowhunter Academy which was a series of short stories! These novellas take place after the events of City of Heavenly Fire. They also feature characters from The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, The Dark Artifices and the upcoming trilogy, The Last Hours. I’d heard a lot of people say that it was a good idea to read these novellas before moving on to Lady Midnight.
I thought I’d share my thoughts on this series with you. This review is going to go a little differently. There are ten novellas so I’m going to list all of them with a quick summary and quickly talk about what I liked, what I didn’t like and my overall rating.
Tales from Shadowhunter Academy are a series of ten novellas by Cassandra Clare and co-written with Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman. This series of novellas follows Simon Lewis as he trains to be a Shadowhunter at the newly re-opened Shadowhunter Academy.
I really enjoyed all of the novellas; they were entertaining and were quick reads! It also featured Simon who’s my favorite character of The Mortal Instruments which is what made these novellas super fun!
I just want to warn you that there are spoilers for those of you who have not read The Mortal Instruments yet! I will try my best to make these spoiler-free but I cannot guarantee anything. Please proceed with caution!
- Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan – Simon Lewis never thought he’d become a Shadowhunter, but it’s exactly what he’s come to do after the huge losses the Nephilim suffered in the Dark War against Sebastian Morgenstern. He joins the newly re-opened Shadowhunter Academy to train to be a Shadowhunter after certain events that took place during the Dark War. I liked this novella because it gave us good insight into what life was like after the War, and also how Simon was coping. It was a good start to the series, and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I gave this novella 4/5 stars.
- The Lost Herondale by Cassandra Clare and Robin Wasserman – Simon learns about the worst thing a Shadowhunter can do: desertion of comrades during battle. The name ‘Herondale’ really excited me, as it always does! This was a really interesting story and it really showed us how the Clave works and sometimes sed lex, dura lex shouldn’t be applied in all situations. We also learned a lot about Catarina Loss who’s always been a very interesting character! Overall, I really enjoyed this book! I gave it 4/5 stars.
- The Whitechapel Fiend by Cassandra Clare and Maureen Johnson – Simon learns the truth behind the “Jack the Ripper” murders. Loved, loved, loved this novella mainly because we got to see Will Herondale and Tessa Gray along with their adorable kids who’ll be the main focus in The Last Hours trilogy. I love Cassie’s ingenuity; Jack the Ripper was a mundane killer but Cassie decides to turn him into someone that was actually a part of the Shadowhunter World. One of my favorites of the series; I gave this 5/5 stars.
- Nothing But Shadows by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan – Simon challenges the ways of the Shadowhunter Academy and learns about James Herondale and Matthew Fairchild. This was really good and I really enjoyed the characters – I’m so excited for The Last Hours now! James Herondale is so unlike his dad, it was sometimes hard to remember that he was Will Herondale’s son. This story was funny and heart-warming. I gave it 4/5 stars.
- The Evil We Love by Cassandra Clare and Robin Wasserman – Simon learns about how Valentine Morgenstern’s Circle came into being. This one was another of my favorites because it talked about the most important part of The Mortal Instruments, Valentine’s Circle and how it affected some of the characters, especially Robert Lightwood. It was so interesting to read about Valentine’s charisma and how he had a way with everyone and he could charm everybody. I gave this one 5/5 stars.
- Pale Kings and Princes by Cassandra Clare and Robin Wasserman – Simon and a few other students at the Academy learn about how Mark and Helen Blackthorn were born and why they are treated the way they are. The story was used as a cautionary tale for Shadowhunters and how they should actually treat Downworlders, especially faeries. Another one of my favorites; it was really nice to get insight into some of the Blackthorn children who will be important parts in The Dark Artifices series. I also really liked how Simon challenged the ways of Shadowhunters by interacting with Downworlders. I gave it 5/5 stars.
- Bitter of Tongue by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan – Simon is kidnapped by fey while on a mission where he meets Mark Blackthorn, now a part of The Wild Hunt, who refuses to let go of his Shadowhunter past. This was an emotional story because it was heartbreaking to see Mark grapple with his present in The Wild Hunt and not let go of his Shadowhunter past. I actually cried when he starting remembering his siblings. He ultimately helps Simon escape in the hopes that the Clave will try and get him back. Another one of my favorites; I gave this 5/5 stars.
- The Fiery Night by Cassandra Clare and Maureen Johnson – Simon and Clary are asked to be witnesses to Julian’s and Emma’s parabatai ceremony. I enjoyed this novella because it was nice to see Clary and Simon together again and the test they go through to prove that they are compatible enough to be parabatai was action-packed and super exciting! I really liked this novella; 5/5 stars.
- Born to Endless Night by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan – Simon finds an abandoned warlock child and hands it over to Magnus. I didn’t like this novella as much as the others; there wasn’t a lot of action and there was a lot of Malec who aren’t my favorite ship in the world. I’m not a homophobe and I have nothing against gay people, it’s just that gay and lesbian romances aren’t stories I gravitate towards because it’s hard to relate to. It was still good but a little boring and disappointing considering the three before this were all 5 stars. I gave this one 4/5 stars.
- Angels Twice Descending by Cassandra Clare and Robin Wasserman – The day has finally come when Simon will Ascend and become a Shadowhunter. This novella was the best way to end the series. It was emotional and exciting; it was heart-breaking to see Simon say good-bye to his mother and to also watch one of my favorite characters die, which was so unexpected. It was a satisfying ending and I couldn’t have asked for more: 5/5 stars.
Overall, I really enjoyed the series and I’m so glad I read these. I definitely recommend reading these after you’ve read The Mortal Instruments and if you plan on reading Lady Midnight. At the moment, they’re available as e-only novellas, but on November 15th of this year, there will be a full bind-up available, similar to how The Bane Chronicles were done.
My final rating for the entire series is 4.5/5 stars.