Monday, 12 August 2013

The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

Goodreads Summary : “The first kidnappings happened two hundred years before. Some years it was two boys taken, some years two girls, sometimes one of each. But if at first the choices seemed random, soon the pattern became clear. One was always beautiful and good, the child every parent wanted as their own. The other was homely and odd, an outcast from birth. An opposing pair, plucked from youth and spirited away.”

This year, best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to discover where all the lost children go: the fabled School for Good & Evil, where ordinary boys and girls are trained to be fairy tale heroes and villains. As the most beautiful girl in Gavaldon, Sophie has dreamed of being kidnapped into an enchanted world her whole life. With her pink dresses, glass slippers, and devotion to good deeds, she knows she’ll earn top marks at the School for Good and graduate a storybook princess. Meanwhile Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks, wicked pet cat, and dislike of nearly everyone, seems a natural fit for the School for Evil.

But when the two girls are swept into the Endless Woods, they find their fortunes reversed—Sophie’s dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School For Good, thrust amongst handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication.. But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are…?

The School for Good & Evil is an epic journey into a dazzling new world, where the only way out of a fairy tale is to live through one.

My Rating : 3.5 of 5 stars

My Thoughts : I’m confused.

The marketing strategy for the book is quite evident that the book gets enough hype to draw attentions from readers of all genres, from MG to YA, from YA to non YA. Honestly, I have mixed feelings about this book.

And I’m not sure how to articulate them all together in a review.

Maybe because the book didn't live up to the excitation and expectation it created within me. Well. I’m going to use the some old phrase-
it’s me, not you.

There is no doubt the author did a unique job by blending his creativity with fairy tales that we have heard over times, embarking a magical escapade to world we all had dreamed to live in our tween- remember the feeling of having your first crush, the blush on your cheeks, dreaming of your prince charming?

The book brings back memories of those days.

In land of Gavaldon, a mysterious thief whisks away children to School for Good and Evil, where they are trained to play their predestined roles in fairy tales. Sophie, with her
princes-perfect good looks, glass sleepers and devotion to good deeds
, dreams of being kidnapped and placed in School of Good, where she can follow the footsteps of legendary past graduates, like Cinderella, Rapunzel, Snow White and many others, those who had been entitled as heroes in pages of storybook. While, Sophie’s best friend Agatha, with her
shapeless black frocks, wicked pet cat, and dislike of nearly everyone
, seems a perfect fit for the rank of villains in School for Evil.

But when two girls are swept away in the woods, they found their fortunes reversed. Sophie, instead of School for Good, was dumped into School for Evil and Agatha was thrust among the princes and fair-maidens of the land, therefore soon they enters in a struggle for identity, desperate to switch their places.

A vivid image of this magical world was given through the story, and to enhance our mundane imagination further, a brilliant map of the school and artistic sketches on the beginning of each chapter was also provided.

And what interesting subjects they teach in the school, reminding me a bit of the curriculum activities of Harry Potter. For example Uglification, Princess Etiquette, Animal Communication, Death Trap, more charms and curses. Sound awesome, don’t they?

While I really didn't care much about beautiful Sophie and her vanity, I definitely felt for Agatha. To me, Sophie went from utterly annoying to totally evil. While her friend struggles to become a fearsome villain, Agatha was the one who always stood by her, no matter what. And there was Hort. A lovely boy that he is, such an adorable character.

Overall the book was good, I enjoyed those little hilarious moments. The book explores different side of friendship and love, jealousy and revenge, being moral and immoral.



I believe, this could have been showed in a different way rather than taking the same old (and boring) straightforward strategy of Team Good vs. Team Evil.

View all my reviews

1 comment:

  1. Personally, I love the cover of the book! And it sounds like my type of book! Thanks for the balanced review(: