Alex’s parents are abandoning her for eight months and placing her in a boarding school. But when they drop her off she steps into another world complete with magic -like technology, kids with special powers and – for the first time in her life – friends. As she struggles to work out the world she lives in there are also the mysteries of why is she there? And what is her special power?
The annoying bit of this book was the really teenager stuff. Every male character is super cute, every girl is apparently super hot. But, happily, this isn’t mentioned too too much, and there isn’t even a romance in this book which is pretty refreshing. And it was SUCH GOOD FUN! I picked it out because I follow the author’s blog and have loved following her progress of getting a cover, etc etc, and was curious to read the finished product.
The world that Alex has stumbled into is fascinating. She’s got into Arkarnae, which is an academy for teens with special powers, and their subjects include combat, archery and horse riding – but it’s anything but medieval. Technology that seems like magic delivers food instantly to their plates, throws up holograms and endless other things.
And then there’s the library. This was just magical. The library is an endless source of knowledge – and not just from books. It hides many secrets, and Alex is Chosen to be one of the very few people to explore them. I really enjoyed her adventures there, and look forward to finding out more in subsequent books.
And as I said before, I liked that there wasn’t really a romance element, but just good friends. By the end of the book Alex had female as well as male friends too, which is always a bonus! Alex is a pretty good character herself: the only thing which frustrated me slightly is how easily she seemed to take this crazy turn in her life, but really to get on with the story I suppose it was necessary. Her development was believable and fun, and I really enjoyed going adventuring with her.
I kept wanting to read this book, and was sad when I was done. It’s apparently the first of five, which seems a lot, but I’m optimistic about it retaining mystery, interest, etc etc etc. It’s most like a Tamora Pierce book, so plenty of fun. Well done Lynette, and I’m looking forward to the next one!