Book Review | THE BANE CHRONICLES by Cassandra Clare, Maureen Johnson, and Sarah Rees Brennan

3.5/5 stars

We’ve seen Magnus Bane appear and disappear in the previously published Shadowhunter Chronicles, and always leaving a trace of glitter. In this new installment of previously e-book only short stories, we can see Magnus’ past in a way never experienced before. 

There are a lot of people accusing Cassandra Clare of “milking the cash cow” by repetitively going into the Shadowhunter world to write books. I don’t really have a stand on this, but I can see their point, as Magnus’ stories didn’t have to be published in paperback as they were already e-books. Physical copies give them more exposure, i.e, more can be bought. Again, I’m kind of neutral in this issue, because as long as they’re good books, I’ll read them.

Moving on to the actual review, I did enjoy this book. Of course, it didn’t really live up to the Mortal Instruments series, but that was a full series with six novels, and this was a collection of short stories.

It took me a bit to get into this book. Maybe the reason was because they were short stories, and I’m not really used to that format. Also, some of the stories didn’t really interest me? I found myself skimming a lot.

The writing style is nice and familiar, and although Clare wasn’t the only one writing these stories, they really resonate with her tone. We also get to see another side of Magnus, as all of it is in his point of view, and behind the layers of snark and glitter, we see an extremely sensitive person. Not especially to his emotions, but to others. This creates a nice balance in the perspective as we read, getting a mixture of comedy and deeper emotions.

Something I really enjoyed was the artwork. Before each story, there was an excerpt of it quoted, and the other page would have the art on it. Here is an example:

This was part of the last short story, The Voicemail of Magnus Bane. Although, it wasn’t really a short story, it was a compilation of Magnus’ voicemail, as obvious by the title, it was my favorite. Probably because my homegirl Isabelle was in it, and I didn’t know how much I missed her. And also, it was just easy to read through, and after reading through the stories, it was nice to just quickly read the little blurbs.

Overall, I enjoyed the book because of the reference to the TMI series, so I could have a little backstory with what happened, but other than that, for me, it wasn’t too spectacular.

However, I am excited for Clare’s new series the Dark Artifices, and I will definitely be doing book reviews for those books!


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