Book Review: The School for Good & Evil

Chainani, Soman
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!

At first look, The School for Good & Evil may look like your classic and basic fantasy book with a little romance. Even though there is so much more, this book has so much depth to its plot, and just how the world is set up could be a whole book in itself. It starts in this little classic village that looks like any classic medieval village, maybe a bit more sophisticated. This village for the past 150 years has had two of their children aged around 16, boy or girl, taken from their village in the middle of the night and they are never seen again. The villagers try their hardest to stop this force that takes them, yet every year they fail. They go looking for them in the forest surrounding the village but every time someone has gone looking they go in on one side of the forest and appear out of the forest on the other side of the village. Then every year a book shows up full of stories, some including people who look like the children taken, the bookmaker then copies this book over and over to sell to everyone in the village. These stories are the classic fairy tales that everyone has heard of, as well as fairy tales we have never heard of. The village people have no clue where the children go or what happens to them except for the maybes in the books. Yet they know one thing, one child is good and one is evil.
The story starts with two girls, Sophie and Agatha, two best friends, yet opposites. Sophie is your classic-looking princess who has flawless skin, long golden blonde hair, beautiful clothes, almost the best house in the village, and is kind to everyone. While Agatha is your classic-looking witch who dresses in all black, doesn’t care about her appearance much, lives in a graveyard, has a cat that seemed to come from hell, and her mother is the witch doctor of the village. Both the same age, everyone knew they would be taken, knowing which is good and which is evil. Sophie wanted to leave desperately and did everything she possibly could to make sure she would be taken, Agatha wanted to stay in her quaint little life and not leave the village, her mom, and her cat. When the day came that the children would be taken everyone in the village worked to blockade every window door and make sure everyone stayed inside, while everyone older lined along the forest. Sophie prepared to be taken, and Agatha prepared to save her best friend from being taken. Night fell and as it turned out both Agatha and Sophie were taken, it was not a fun ride; they were pulled through the forest, the branches ripping their skin, then flying above in the claws of some bird. The two girls then saw the castles, the school for good and evil, one castle bright and shining and the other dark and gloomy. A fog came in and the girls couldn’t see anymore, they then were both dropped first Agatha and then Sophie. Yet Sophie woke up in the swamp of the evil castle and Agatha woke up in the shining clear blue lake of the good castle, something no one anticipated.
This book was something I never expected, I thought it would just be a bunch of fluff and would be a really short, easy, and bland read. NOT AT ALL. This book changed my expectations of how books should be written. This book was like something I have never read before. The twist on how we see fairytales is insane and shows what we never would have thought happened. There are so many twists and turns that even though you know the general idea of the book, you have no clue what is going to happen on every single page. This book would be great for anyone that loves reading fairy tales, fantasy, drama, and a little bit of a dark side twist in books.
Reviewer Grade: 12

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