Review: The School For Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

November 19, 2013 Review 28 ★★★★½

Review: The School For Good and Evil by Soman Chainani
The School For Good and Evil by Soman Chainani
(Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository)

Publisher: HarperCollins Australia
Source: Purchased
Pages: 488
Release Date: May 14th, 2013
Series: The School for Good and Evil #1
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
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Sophie had waited all her life to be kidnapped.

Every four years two children are stolen away from Gavaldon, never to return. Most children fear being taken to the School for Good and Evil. But no Sophie…

She has dreamt all her life of being a princess and believes the school could be her chance.

Her best friend Agatha has other ideas.

When the two girls are taken, things don’t quite go to Sophie’s plan.

Because sometimes, the princess and the witch don’t look like they do in fairytales.
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Warning: This review is going to be extra terrible. I finished THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL a month ago but haven’t had time to write reviews until now (stupid exams) so my memory is a bit fuzzy. I may not get all the details of this book right, but I do know that I loved this book.

One of the main appeals of this book was the actual school. I wanted to see what it was like and find out what happens to the children that were taken. It doesn’t take long for the plot to develop and dump the girls in the school. Textbook titles and class names are hilarious and really are the stereotypical thing that you’d expect a school for good or evil to teach. The students themselves are also quite interesting. All the “good” students are princes and princesses who are quite self absorbed and obsessed with fulfilling their assigned roles. Their greatest dreams are being a hero or a defenseless princess waiting for her Prince Charming. They got on my nerves sometimes. The evil students were much more to my liking. They had a surprising amount of compassion and depth, but were seen as ugly. The best thing they could hope or was to be a fantastic villain in a Good’s story and have a not so cheery end.

This brings me to the main characters: Agatha and Sophie. Two polar opposites who are dumped into the schools they think they don’t belong in. But that’s one of the theme’s of the novel I think: you can’t tell a person true characteristics from just appearance and background. It’s their actions, motivations & what’s inside that counts. Sophie was a selfish little girl that used people to get what she thought she deserved because she was beautiful and a ‘princess’. Agatha was kind and compassionate and completely unwilling to go to the school. They had to grow and understand that it’s not always easy to distinguish between good and evil.

Writing wise, this was pretty typical Middle Grade stuff. There were funny moments, some lines that I think were meant to be taken as innuendos (and were. Twas hilarious). The plot moved a little slowly at times, but at the end there’s a fantastic big battle and twists I could barely believe. Also a big cliffhanger.

Romance was the only other thing I’m a bit meh on and the point that’s stopping this from getting 5 stars. I did like reading the romance, it developed slowly and on the side line. My problem was with WHEN the characters realised their feelings. (after a certain spoilery event. I wonder if the relationship would have happened if that even hadn’t…) After the ending, I have no idea how things will develop.

Overall, I really really enjoyed THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL and recommend it highly. The main theme of good and evil is one that I really like reading about and discussing (if you didn’t notice) and the world of this series is really cool. Romance and a plot which was a tad slow at times is the only reason THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL didn’t drag 5 stars out from me.

Sorry for the word vomit…

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Rating Report
Plot
Characters
Writing
Pacing
Romance
Overall: 4.4

28 Responses to “Review: The School For Good and Evil by Soman Chainani”

    • Bec

      It actually has some REALLY DARK moments. I was surprised. And the innuendos… Not sure if they were meant to be read that way but I read them that way XD

      They are gorgeous. Thanks :D

  1. Jessica

    I loved this book so much! Reminded me of how I felt about the first Harry Potter or Hunger Games! Great review. Can’t wait for the next one

    • Bec

      This is probably a good MG to go with then. It’s cute and entertaining, but also quite dark and mature. I hope you enjoy it :)

      Thanks

    • Bec

      That’s what I think about the romance too. Things were already sparking. Can’t wait to see how the romance develops further. And what the themes of the next book are going to be :)

    • Bec

      This goes on the list of “Books Bec INSISTS Alise reads”

      MG can be fantastic. It’s so different from YA. And yes. Your villains *sigh*

    • Bec

      Exactly! It’s important to realise that good and evil isn’t as simple as black and white.

      Sophie did get on my nerves. She was so obsessed with getting what she wanted and not caring about anyone or anything else. I hope the experience at the school changed her though, and want to see how she develops in the next book.

  2. Janina @ Synchronized Reading

    I’m so glad you enjoyed this book, because I’m thinking of putting a hold on the audio book at my library :) There is a freaking wait list though because everyone seems to want to read it lol It just sounds really good and I’ve heard some great things about the story. Great review! It makes want to read it that much more.
    Janina @ Synchronized Reading recently posted…Darkness Awakened by Katie Reus

    • Bec

      I did enjoy the romance, there were just aspects that could have been done better. I still liked the way it was developing too. And it was only a tiny part of the plot so there was heaps of other stuff to get excited about! Cannot wait for the next one :D

    • Bec

      That is a movie I’m looking forward to.

      IT IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN IT SOUNDS. I was expecting it to be meh, but it really surprised me.

      thanks

  3. Sunny

    Well, I’M embarrassed. That’s a horrible review for you and word vomit? Puh-lease. Although I’m so with you, I’m behind on reviews and I’m kind of freaking out because I have no idea how I’ll word everything. I’m glad that this was good for you in parts, but it’s disappointing that it was just meh. The cover looks great though!
    Sunny recently posted…Review: A LONG, LONG SLEEP by Anna Sheehan

    • Bec

      It was completely unplanned and I only really touched on half of what I wanted to say :/ I am still behind and running out of motivation to catch up (I JUST WANT TO READ)

      Only TINY parts were disappointing, and even then it was good. The cover is gorgeous

  4. Delaney

    OMGosh this one was one I really enjoyed too! It didn’t turn into a favorite for a few flaws here and there but it was so GOOD! I definitely enjoyed the setting the whole story set place on. Having a setting of two schools: one for good the other for evil and how described them with such depth for each school and there set of classes, teachers, and students that reflect that school.

    Sophie angered me to no end! I was constant rooting for Agatha and the Prince Charming and romance was pretty sweet in my opinion and maybe more development in the next book?

    Will you be reading the second book in the series?
    Delaney recently posted…Shuffle Saturday>>2

    • Bec

      The setting was amazing! Hilarious and deep and just awesome.

      YES THAT IS MY SHIP AND MY HOPES. I am definitely buying the second book as soon as I can.

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