Serpent and Dove by Shelby Mahurin

The basics

Title: Serpent and Dove


Series: Serpent and Dove #1

- Serpent and Dove (2019)
- Blood and Honey (2020)
- Gods and Monsters (2021)

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Goodreads Summary:

Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.

Sworn to the Church as a Chasseur, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. His path was never meant to cross with Lou's, but a wicked stunt forces them into an impossible union—holy matrimony.

The war between witches and Church is an ancient one, and Lou's most dangerous enemies bring a fate worse than fire. Unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, a choice must be made.

And love makes fools of us all.

Read a full summary of Serpent and Dove by Shelby Mahurin below. If you can’t remember what happened in Serpent and Dove and you need a refresher, then you’re in the right place.

What happened in Serpent and Dove?

  • Lou Le Blanc is a witch. Currently, she is trying to spy on two people called Madame Labelle and Pierre Tremblay. She manages to listen in on their conversation, and discovers that Labelle wants to buy a magic ring from Tremblay as he used to sell magical objects.
  • Tremblay tells Labelle that the ring is at his place, and he’ll have it ready for the following morning.
  • Of course, Lou and her friend Coco have overheard this entire thing. They go to get Bas, Lou’s ex, and fill him in on the plan.
  • Lou encounters a Chasseur called Reid. Reid is a witch hunter and works for the Archbishop. Lou is dressed in men’s clothes so initially Reid mistakes her for a boy but he does realise eventually.
  • The royal family are attacked during a parade by some witches. Reid fights the witches off and tries to capture them, but of course he fails. One of the witches is their leader, La Dames des Sorcieres. I think Reid gets a little turned on.
  • Anyway… Reid goes back to report to his supervisor, the Archbishop. The Archbishop is pleased with Reid, and says the king plans to host a ball to thank him for protecting his family.
  • Lou and Coco use their magic to break into Tremblay’s house to get the ring. Some Chasseurs show up while they’re looking about, and only Coco manages to escape. Bas tries to make his own way out but doesn’t do a great job of it.
  • Reid recognises Lou almost immediately. Lou puts on the ring and turns invisible.
  • Lou finds Coco again and explains the magical ring to her. It belonged to a white witch named Angelica, who once loved a knight. At some point, the knight died, and Angelica cried enough tears to fill a sea… which she jumped into and drowned. The ring, having absorbed her magic, ended up being fished out of the sea.
  • Coco has to leave town to stay away from the Chasseurs.
  • Two thieves find Lou and try to make her give up the ring. Lou manages to escape.
  • The next morning, Reid bumps into Lou (again) and grabs her. They get into a bit of rough and tumble, and they are seen. This is bad and not very chaste, so the Archbishop demands that Reid marries Lou. The Archbishop announces the marriage, and Lou moves in with Reid.
  • Lou looks around Reid’s room and finds his love letters from Celie, his first love. Lou confront Reid about them once he tells her that Ansel will be keeping an eye on her.
  • Lou is not allowed to access the top floors, so naturally she’s intrigued. Ansel refuses to show her to tower so Lou runs off. She detects the scent of magic. She looks around and bumps into Coco, who’s working in the infirmary.
  • Coco and Lou are able to practise their magic and use the already prescent scent of magic to hide their own.
  • Reid goes to find Andre and Grue, the two thieves from earlier. He can’t find them, but he does tell Lou that Bas is in custody. He won’t let Lou see him.
  • Lou makes Ansel take her to see Bas. Lou gets him out of the dungeon and takes away his memories.
  • Reid enters the dungeon and is able to smell magic. Thankfully, Coco enters the room and they assume the scent came from the infirmary.
  • Reid gives Lou a romance book to read.
  • Madame Labelle asks to speak to Lou. She whispers “She is coming” in Lou’s ear, which makes Lou nervous. Lou knows Labelle was talking about her mother.
  • Lou recalls how she was supposed to die on her 16th birthday.
  • Lou asks Ansel to help her find a weapon.
  • Lou tells Coco about what Labelle said to her. Lou wants to get better at doing magic so she’s ready to face her mother.
  • The book Lou was reading has been adapted into a stage play, so Reid and Lou go to watch it, naturally. A witch called Estelle is there, and Lou tries to avoid her but Estelle wants to talk to Reid. Estelle recognises Lou and starts talking to her but then Reid knocks Estelle out to turn her in.
  • Estelle is burnt at the stake, but Lou casts a spell to take the pain away. Lou feels the pain instead.
  • Lou passes out and remains unconscious for three days.
  • Lou and Reid argue about witches.
  • Lou thinks about how her mother tried to sacrifice her to end the line of witches, and this would then end the king’s line of succession too.
  • Ansel knows Lou is a witch but for some reason he hasn’t said anything. Lou confronts him, and Ansel and Coco tell Lou to be careful.
  • Lou wonders if Reid could come around to the fact that witches aren’t evil.
  • The Archbishop gives Lou a bible.
  • Lou and Reid talk about his position as captain. She also introduces Reid to Bas.
  • Bernie, an old man from the infirmary, is missing. Coco goes to look for him.
  • The king holds the ball that he promised Reid. Lou gets dressed up and attends. The prince, Beau, approaches her and asks if she’d like to make Reid jealous.
  • Celie talks to Reid and tells him to leave Lou. Lou overhears, and realises she fancies Reid. Reid tries to explain about the Celie situation and Lou comes around.
  • Lou and Reid talk about witches and she informs him that the witches give birth to both boys and girls, but the boys are generally given away because they can’t do magic. Hm. I wonder where this is going.
  • Lou goes to buy a dagger for Reid as a gift, but the blacksmith locks her up. It’s a trap set up by Andre and Grue. Lou kills them.
  • Reid helps Lou break out and they kiss.
  • Reid shows Lou a wedding ring he thinks he got from his mother.
  • Reid and Lou bang on the theatre roof.
  • Labelle talks to Lou a little, and Lou notices that she looks a lot like Reid. Labelle tells Lou that her mother is around, and that she needs to keep the ring on her and hidden.
  • Bernie is found in an alley. Bernie tells Lou he’s coming for her. Reid kills Bernie.
  • The king calls upon Reid, so he leaves Lou with the Archbishop. Lou and the Archbishop go to a performance about a holy man who impregnated a witch. Lou realises this is IRL, and that the archbishop x witch combo really happened. Turns out that the witch from the story was her mother.
  • The performers are witches, and they try to take Lou. Reid and the Archbishop get her to safety, except one witch makes it through and knocks Reid and Ansel out.
  • Lou fights the witch off to begin with but then passes out. Reid starts fighting the witch instead, and allows Lou to use him to create balance. The witch is killed.
  • Reid has a bit of a meltdown now he knows Lou is a witch. He finally puts everything together and realises that Lou is the daughter of The Mother and the Archbishop. Oh.
  • Lou’s mother, Morgane, finally catches Lou.
  • Jean Luc winds Reid up so Reid punches him. The Archbishop shows up trying to find Lou. He sends Reid and Ansel to find her.
  • Coco reveals that Ansel knew about Lou, so Reid is like ??? no one tells me anything.
  • Coco uses a locator spell to find Lou. They head to the Bellerose and bump into Beau. Madame Labelle shows up and is able to use the spell to find Lou’s exact location.
  • Labelle fills the others in on the war, Angelica, and the king and Morange and stuff so now everyone is up to speed.
  • It turns out that Constantin was in love with Angelica, and vice versa, until he became jealous of her magic and tried to steal it. He started killing people instead, and when that didn’t work, he killed himself. This caused Angelica to drown herself from grief.
  • Labelle reveals that the king has 26 children (most illegitimate), and Morgane plans on killing them all to take back the land.
  • Labelle reveals that the Archbishop has been looking for his daughter to, hopefully, protect her.
  • And, SHOCK, Labelle had a baby with the king… it’s Reid. GASP. Morgane made Labelle give the boy up.
  • Anyway, Lou is now paralysed and stuck with her mother. Morgane also has the ring.
  • Morgane tells Lou that Reid will die, and that she doesn’t love Lou. Harsh.
  • The other group head to the Chateau where Lou is being kept. The Archbishop is also trapped there now. He was in the forest, presumably searching for Lou.
  • The group arrives just in time for Morgane to start the ritual where she plans to kill Lou. She has also captured Labelle at this point. Morgane stabs Labelle. She tries to kill Lou but Coco jabs at Morgane and distracts her.
  • Reid goes to kill Morgane but the Archbishop tells him to let her go. Otherwise the Archbishop will die.
  • Morgane slashes Lou’s throat. It’s okay though because a gold thread attaches itself to Lou, and it seems to originate with the Archbishop. Reid kills the Archbishop and Lou’s life is saved.
  • Right on time, Jean Luc and the other men arrive. Jean Luc of course gets the wrong end of the stick and thinks Reid killed the Archbishop maliciously or something and tries to kill Reid.
  • Coco heals Madame Labelle. Reid then tells Labelle what she missed.
  • Labelle reveals that Reid has magic too, since he could see the golden cord. He’s the first ever male witch (we assume).
  • Lou and Reid talk. The group tries to come up with a plan. Labelle wants to talk to the king. Coco wants the group to go back with her to her coven, as her aunt is the leader of the blood witches.

That was our recap of what happened in Serpent and Dove by Shelby Mahurin. Check out our recap list for more plot summaries, and if you can’t find what you need you can request a recap here!


  • Kristen says:

    Thank you so much for this!!

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