A Decade of Shadowhunters

I’ve been going through a bit of a slump just in general. Reading hasn’t been great, I haven’t written in months, and I haven’t been practicing yoga outside of teaching. Work is a lot, and there are several things going on in my personal life that are taking precedence in a way I wish they weren’t, but it is what it is, and we’re working through it. Recently, however, I’ve really been missing books, and I was trying to find a way to get back to reading regularly, and all I wanted was Shadowhunters, and it occurred to me that, for the first time in ten years, I don’t have a new one to read. Y’all. Ten years.

I’ve talked about my journey with the Shadowhunters universe six ways to Sunday, so this post is probably a whole lot of unnecessary, but it really rocked my boat the other day that it’s been ten years with those books, so I wanted to take up some space talking about them.

Way back in 2007, one of my friends gifted me City of Bones, and I was the worst sort of asshole about it. Jace was shirtless on the cover, muscled and tattooed, and I was highbrow back then, so I refused to read it because it looked trashy. I hadn’t yet become the person I am today, who hates the term guilty pleasures, because why should anything that you’re enjoying be considered guilty if it’s not hurting other people? People who call books like Shadowhunters guilty pleasures and trashy are the bane of my existence because why are we gatekeeping what other people read? Why the hell was I gatekeeping myself?

Anywho, fast forward to 2012, when all but the last book has been released, and Jamie Campbell Bower was slated to star in a new movie called The Mortal Instruments, and the trailer was bomb dot com. Hindsight is everything because that movie really was awful, but it looked so good at the time, and I was in love with Bower for reasons I can’t remember, so I decided, well, gotta read it before I watch it, and lo and behold, it’s the book I refused to read.

There are 2,439 pages across the first five books in TMI, and I read them in a month & a half. I would really like that version of myself to return to the scene immediately because what?? How the hell? And that’s not even a lot, I realize, but it’s nearly 2500 pages of only Shadowhunters, which is a lot on its own, and I am just baffled that I was able to do that. On the flip side, it also makes a lot of sense to me because, to this day, Shadowhunters is one of my favorite series ever.

I’ve reread TMI three times now, and I definitely plan on rereading it again in the future. I’ve read every spin-off trilogy and short story collection, and I can definitely see myself rereading a few of those. The fact that there’s now close to or over 20 novels means that I likely won’t do a full series reread probably ever, but, now and then, I find myself missing the Blackthorn family enough that I’d totally dive back into The Dark Artifices. I mean, y’all think I talk about Katy Rose Pool’s phenomenal trilogy a lot, but the sheer amount of Clary Fray posts I could link is next level. I love each and every character in the Shadowhunters universe, I don’t care that the stories are reused, and I am so sad that I don’t have any to read right now.

One of my goals for the last two years has been to catch up on all currently published Shadowhunters books. I’d just finished a reread of TMI, and I hadn’t ever read anything outside of the main series, so I finally dove into The Infernal Devices, and it’s been a wild two years reading the other 10+ novels in the universe. I was really working toward finishing out the first two books in The Last Hours last year, though, and I ended up reading Chain of Iron at the very end of December. And now, for the first time since 2012, I’m left waiting for a new book to read, and it’s really bumming me out. I’ve been reading Shadowhunters for a decade, and I’m finally caught up.

I’ve got such a what do I do with my hands feeling because?? What am I supposed to do when I’m in a reading slump, and the only thing that can solve it is the universe that I have no more books to read from? I could reread TMI, finally kick off the whole thing again, but my brain is still stuck with TLH, and I don’t think I could make it through a 400+ page book right now. Thankfully, I have kind of found a temporary solution. I picked up A Ferry of Bones & Gold by Hailey Turner the other day, which, I mean, just look at the cover.

Good grief, these are something else. One of my boys at work chirped the first one big time and said, “If you have the ability to create a fireball, why do you also need a Glock?” And he’s not wrong, y’all, these books are ridiculous and amazing. They’re like a much more adult (much, it’s got some explicity fanfiction vibes) and way gayer version of Shadowhunters, and I love them. It’ll never be the same because Clary Fray will forever hold my heart, but until Chain of Thorns comes out later this year, this is where I’m at, and you know what? It’s working.

I read the first book in only a couple days, and I obviously immediately ordered the other six in the series, and I cannot wait until they get delivered tomorrow. I fully anticipate just bingeing my way through the entire series like I’m reading Shadowhunters for the first time again, and I am so ready for it. The last decade has been lit by my slow journey through angel-blessed demon hunters, and I’m excited to begin a new one with gods-blessed mage cops because why the hell not, sounds like a good time. I am obviously still stupidly in love with Shadowhunters, but it’s pretty great to have a new series to fall in love with, too.

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