REVIEW: The Cooper Gauntlet by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black

Updated: Feb 15

Okay guys, we are going on a journey, I've previously read the first book in this series and enjoyed it but for the life of me, I just didn't write a review at the time (which was a couple of years ago) so we are starting our review series with the second book, with a small paragraph as a catch up with what happened in the first book. Let's dig in.


The Cooper Gauntlet:

Previously in the Iron Trial, the first book of the series, we meet Callum Hunt who finds out that he is a mage so he ends up at Mage School. This is where he meets his two best friends Aaron and Tamara but he is hiding a secret from them that could destroy their relationship. He finds out that he has the soul of The Enemy of Death inside him, so maybe he is bad? He doesn’t feel bad but who knows, after all he doesn’t remember anything of his past life.

Call is back home for the summer with his dad who is not exactly pleased that his son went to and still wants to go back to the magisterium, the school for mages. His dad is constantly trying to talk him out of going back and things get tense between the two. One night though he notices that Havoc, his chaos ridden wolf, has gone missing. After looking for him for hours on end, he finds havoc locked up in the basement inscribed with magic symbols as well as plans for a ritual to remove evil magic. When his dad appears in the doorway, he runs away thinking that his dad will take away his magic. He decides to go to Tamara’s house.

When he gets to Tamara’s house, he sees that a fancy garden party is going on. Just before he is kicked out, Tamara comes to his rescue and sees him. Aaron is there too, looking different because in the last book we find out that he is the Makar, the one person who should be able to defeat the enemy of death. Tamara’s parents have taken in him to try and show him off to other people that they are close to a makar.

They eventually go back to the school after finding out that the Alkahest is missing. They go to the library and find out more about it. Master Rufus introduces the idea of a counter weight for the chaos magic that the Makar holds. Aaron decides to use Call as his counterweight. Call thinks that his father has the Alkahest and so the gang and him go after him but Jasper sees them trying to leave but they drag him along to keep him quiet.

After staying at a place that Call’s dad used to frequent, they find a bunch of letters between him and Master Joseph co-ordinating a meet up. After some chaos ensues, the gang find some chaos-ridden humans. They all call Call master; this is when he finally admits the truth to his friends about his soul being that of the Enemy of Death. He asks the chaos ridden to lead him to Master Joseph. Upon arriving at their destination, they find the head of Verity Torres’, a classmate of theirs, on the door. They have to answer three riddles in order to get into the tomb. They solve the riddles and enter the tomb. We find out that it is the tomb of Jericho Madden, Constantine Madden’s brother. Eventually they find the body of Constantine as well.

Master Joseph keeps insisting that he is Constantine but Call refuses to accept it. Alastair shoves the alkahest into the body of Constantine making the body disintegrate. Because of this, Joseph is angry and sends the chaos ridden to attack them but Call uses chaos magic to stop them, a power that he had never had before, and unfortunately releases too much of it and the tomb begins to collapse. Eventually, the magisterium sends for them and retrieves them for where they are.

Once back at the school, they are asked about one hundred different questions about what happened. They tell them that Constantine’s body has been destroyed, Master Joseph has the Alkahest and that Call is now a Makar. Master Rufus warns Call that there is a spy in the midst that the magisterium did not attack them.

Overall this book is so great. These past two years have been the years that I have started reading middle grade and I honestly do not regret this decision one bit. Middle grade has all types of adventures, though the characters are young, they enjoy themselves whilst on these trials and although they are naïve at times, their child like ness is what makes the story better as honestly they have no clue what goes on half the time. I can’t wait to see what Holly Black and Cassandra Clare have in store for these characters.

4 out of 5 stars.

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