Shadowhunters and Downworlders: A Mortal Instruments Reader Book Review
Hello, everyone! So, I've finally finished up Shadowhunters and Downworlders, and I have to say that I was surprised on many different levels. First things first, I hadn't read any of the reviews for this book before I started reading. So it came as a surprise when I found out that this book was actually a collection of academic journals that analyse Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instruments Series. Being an English major, literary analysis is nothing new to me, but I had to appreciate reading an analysis that wasn't about contemporary themes in Paradise Lost or the morality of heroes in Beowulf. Now for the purposes of this review, I am going to assume that you have either read or heard about the Mortal Instruments. With that said, there were definitely a few journals that I like more than others, and I feel that might have something to do with my own personal likes in story telling. In my case, I like the journals that tended to focus on the characters themselves rather than themes across the series. Four journals in particular dealt with Clary the Artist, Jace the witty, Simon the Jew, and Magnus the Magnificent. If you couldn't guess, each journal deals with one aspect of each character: Clary's artistry, Jace's wittiness, Simon being Jewish, and Magnus just being Magnus. I really enjoyed all of them, particularly Simon's analysis due to the fact that it was so thought provoking and Magnus's for making me aware of just how little gay relationships are depicted in Young Adult novels. But if character analysis isn't your thing, this book contains analysis of themes from the taboo of incest to the power of tattooing (both of which I encourage you to read). Most of it is very interesting. With that said, there were a few that I could have lived without. Some I can't even remember reading after going through the table of contents one more time before writing this review. Keeping all that in mind, I think one of the authors Sara Ryan says it best when she implies this book is for "people whose idea of fun includes analyzing literature" and says "if you don't, I commend you for reading this book anyway." Basically, this book if for people who are big fans of Mortal Instruments or literature analysis. If you are not either one of these, I would put this on "Borrow It If Your Friend Has It" list, and give it a 3.5 insight runes out of 5.