Book Review | The Red Scrolls of Magic by Cassandra Clare and Wesley Chu

If I haven’t made it abundantly clear yet, I will now. Cassandra Clare is my favorite author. That said, I will read anything she writes, especially if it’s within the realm of the Shadowhunter’s universe. Another clarifying statement: Magnus Bane is my favorite character within this world. We named our dog after him, for goodness sake! Obviously I will read anything that gives me more Magnus.

So as soon as I realized The Red Scrolls of Magic was the start of a Magnus and Alec trilogy, I preordered my copy. This is actually the first time I’ve started a book ON RELEASE DAY since Deathly Hallows. (Hi, I’m old!).

Synopsis (from Goodreads)

All Magnus Bane wanted was a vacation—a lavish trip across Europe with Alec Lightwood, the Shadowhunter who against all odds is finally his boyfriend. But as soon as the pair settles in Paris, an old friend arrives with news about a demon-worshipping cult called the Crimson Hand that is bent on causing chaos around the world. A cult that was apparently founded by Magnus himself. Years ago. As a joke.

Now Magnus and Alec must race across Europe to track down the Crimson Hand and its elusive new leader before the cult can cause any more damage. As if it wasn’t bad enough that their romantic getaway has been sidetracked, demons are now dogging their every step, and it is becoming harder to tell friend from foe. As their quest for answers becomes increasingly dire, Magnus and Alec will have to trust each other more than ever—even if it means revealing the secrets they’ve both been keeping.

Pacing Issues

Look, maybe I was just tired (that grad school life) but I thought the first 200 pages of this – short by comparison to other books Cassie has written – book dragged by. It wasn’t exciting or thrilling until definitely around the middle/end and I found myself reading only two or three chapters at a time. This is unlike when I read every other Shadowhunter book so it was mildly disappointing in this realm.

HOWEVER, because I love the sass the Magnus provides throughout this book, I didn’t really mind that the pacing was kind of slow in the beginning. Again, I’d like to state, for the record, that I have been exhausted lately so it’s probably not the book that caused me to drift off while reading. Just saying.

More Beloved Supporting Characters

Without spoilers, I will say this: we get to see more of some of my favorite supporting characters from another trilogy Cassie has written. Could I have done without them and focused solely on Magnus and Alec? Yes. Did the surprise of seeing them in this one delight me? Also yes.

So I guess you could say I was happy to see some overlapping amongst the characters and I really thought this added to the plot. I love that Cassie does this in her books. I honestly can’t wait until all the books in this universe are published so I can go back and read them again in order.

The Writing & General Thoughts

As I’ve likely established time and again, I do not love books that are dual authored. Cassie and Wesley, however, make a great writing team and I would love to see more from him.

Of course, I can’t wait for The Lost Book of the White because I need to know more about the antagonist of this story. Also I will always be ready for more Magnus and Alec – trust me, my husband rolls his eyes when I talk about them because it’s probably too often!

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

It hurts me that this wasn’t a five. I just felt bored for the first part of the book and the only salvation was Magnus and his sassy, sarcastic self! Actually… it’s quite possible I hyped this up in my mind too much and that’s why I felt disappointed. Whatevs. I still love me some Malec.

Let’s Chat!

Look I’ve probably asked before, but I don’t care! I’d love to know – who is your favorite character from the Shadowhunter Chronicles? Oh! AND! If you were a Downworlder, which would you be? I think I’d want to be a warlock as I’ve always been fascinated by magic!

Book Reviews From My Library Shadowhunter Chronicles

Brittany Andrade View All →

lover of literature. librarian in training.

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