The Shadowhunter’s Codex is a companion to the Shadowhunter Chronicles by Cassandra Clare and I read it months ago. Then I went on a break and never finished my review… Aaaanyway, the book doesn’t really have a plot like the other Shadowhunter books because it’s quite literally a fictional study guide. The Codex has information on anything mentioned in the Shadowhunter books, from laws, to history, to runes! It’s a must read for any massive Shadowhunter fan, but it’s not necessary to understand the plot of the series. I wanted to read it because it’s mentioned in most of the books and I was just super interested!
“Welcome and Congratulations. You have been chosen to become one of the Nephilim. Soon, if you have not done so already, you will drink from the Mortal Cup, taking into yourself the blood of angels, and you will become one of the “Shadowhunters,” named for the founder of our order.”
“The Shadowhunter’s Codex could be the difference between life and death. It’s the book with which you will learn the Shadowhunter lore and ways.” Like I mentioned before, it’s literally a fictional study guide, and I do not know how to summarise this!
It’s a little difficult for me to review this book because it didn’t really have a plot! Nor did it have any real characters, except for the sidenotes made by Clary, Jace and Simon. I’m going to review it anyway because when I started reading all these books, I told myself I’d review every single one of them!
Let’s just start by saying this book is one big bucket of information. There’s lots of information and it’ll be dumped on you from very first to very last page. We really shouldn’t forget that this is not just your ordinary novel, but a book that our beloved characters learn from. I recommend you do not read it all at once, as I did, because you’ll have forgotten 99% of what you read by the time you get to the (beautiful) drawings in the back. I did really enjoy reading about some of the topics, but if it wasn’t going to write a review, I probably would’ve skipped a fair amount just because I was like “ugh.” There were also a few things that I would’ve loved to read about, but weren’t there at all!
The Shadowhunter’s Codex should be used for reference. Like, whenever one of the main books mentions a certain thing from the Codex, you should look it up. I read this one after finishing Lady Midnight, but maybe I should’ve just gotten it earlier. It definitely would’ve been more useful!
Although, please, don’t read if before City of Glass because SPOILERS!
The art in the Shadowhunter’s Codex was amazing. I could honestly stare at the art all day. There are random cat drawings, portraits and other great artsy things. I liked the handwriting, but long paragraphs were really annoying for my bad eyes. Also, it wasn’t really my favourite part of the book. In the beginning, the handwritten comments were funny, but they didn’t really add anything. I would’ve liked some mentions to things that happened in the actual series! Some sidenotes did, but most were random and useless. Some were more like instant messages and I just didn’t like it.
My review of the Shadowhunter’s Codex can be found on Goodreads.
The Shadowhunter’s Codex was enjoyable, and the art was great, but it wasn’t really my thing. It’s great as a reference to the Shadowhunter books, but not for reading like you would read any novel. It was one big info-dump, with sometimes boring topics that made no sense.
About The Shadowhunter Chronicles
The Shadowhunter’s Codex is compiled by Cassandra Clare and Joshua Lewis. It’s a companion to Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter Chronicles. A bunch of different artists created the art in this book, including Cassandra Jean, who illustrated more Shadowhunter things! You can add the book on Goodreads and purchase it on Book Depository.