The Shadowhunter’s Codex by Cassandra Clare and Joshua Lewis
My Rating: 5/5 Stars
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (October 2013)
Length: 274 pgs
Format: Hardcover, purchased from Target
Synopsis: The Shadownhunter’s Codex is a companion text to The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices series written by Cassandra Clare and set in the fantasy universe of the Shadowhunters’. The Codex itself is referenced in these series as the guide by which all Shadowhunters must abide by, containing the rules and regulations as written by the Clave. Throughout the book, notations made by primary characters Clary Fairchild, Jace Herondale/Wayland/Lightwood, and Simon Lewis.
My Review: Reading this companion text to Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter series was so much fun. I’m a huge fan of the intricate fantasy world she’s built and being able to read one of the primary texts that’s referenced so often was a great way to learn more of how things work (because I’m one of those readers who’s always asking “How is that possible? How did that happen? Why do they do that?”) and a great refresher before I read City of Heavenly Fire, seeing as I didn’t have time to re-read series (which was oh-my-goodness-intense and which I will post a review for as soon as I am able to process everything that happened!) This book is very similar in format to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Quidditch Through the Ages which JK Rowling wrote as companion texts for the Harry Potter series, complete with the character’s own snarky comments and personal sidebars.
What I really loved about this book was that it showcases the intricacy of Clare’s research into creating her universe, especially from a religious point of view. She pulls from many religious traditions and even addresses the role of religion and cultural backgrounds in the Shadowhunter world, taking a pluralistic view in which diversity is accepted and no one tradition or country is superior to others. There are also some truly beautiful illustrations from both series throughout the book (which I assume are supposed to be Clary’s work, as it’s her Codex copy) as well as inside the front and back covers. The Codex even includes illustrations of the specific runes used in the series and oaths, passwords, and nursery rhymes taught to Shadowhunter children. The intricacy of it was fantastic and it gave me so much more of an appreciation for the series.
Are you a fan of the Shadowhunter series? What are your opinions on companion texts? Let me know in the comments!