The School for Good and Evil, by Soman Chainani.
"Do not question the School Master's selections," said Pollux. "All of you will respect each other, whether you're Good or Evil, whether you're from a famous tale family or a failed one, whether you're a sired prince or a Reader. All of you are chosen to protect the balance between Good and Evil. For once that balance is compromised ..." His face darkened. "Our world will perish."
A hush fell over the hall. Agatha grimaced. The last thing she needed was this world perishing while they were still in it.
I started this book before BlogHer, and then didn't bring it with me because it's so large (about 488 pages) ... I then returned to it a few days ago, and it was as whimsical as I remembered it to be. It definitely evokes the Harry Potter series many times through it, with a dash of Hunger Games thrown in, but it also has its own unique story and characters too.
At the School for Good and Evil, failing your fairy tale is not an option.
Welcome to the School for Good and Evil, where best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime.
With her glass slippers and devotion to good deeds, Sophie knows she'll earn top marks at the School for Good and join the ranks of past students like Cinderella, Rapunzel, and Snow White. Meanwhile, Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks and wicked black cat, seems a natural fit for the villains in the School for Evil.
The two girls soon 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 among 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 and Evil is an epic journey into a dazzling new world, where the only way out of a fairy tale is to live through one.
Sophie has always been Good - she dresses the part, anyway - and Agatha has always been Evil: she likes to wear all black, and learn spells. When the two girls are stolen away from their sleepy town by the School Master, however, Agatha gets placed in the School for Good and Sophie gets placed in the School for Evil. There's surely been a mistake made! ... right?
There's a scene near the end of the book that imitates what would happen if the Hunger Games and Harry Potter worlds collided, in my opinion, but for the most part The School for Good and Evil treads its own path. In the School for Good, the boys are princes and the girls learn how to be princesses, and in the School for Evil, they learn how to create devious spells and facial features like moles and warts are handsome and beautiful.
This book was very long but it was also fun to read. Sophie slowly begins to be more witch-like and Agatha learns that she is Good at heart, and some of the scenes near the end are epic. There's also a sequel that will be published, entitled A World Without Princes, that I'd love to read - check EW.com on August 15th for the cover reveal - and the movie rights for the first novel have already been purchased by Universal.
I would definitely watch The School for Good and Evil on the big screen, especially if it's as great as the book was to read.
4 stars out of 5.
And check out the book trailer - it's awesome!