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Aisley's Reviews

Book Review: The School for Good and Evil, Books 4-6, by Sonam Chainani

As promised, here is the review of the last half of The School for Good and Evil books. It took me so darn long to get this done because 1) I wasn’t very smart about how I put the books on hold (I put them on hold as I finished one, instead of multiple at once). And 2) I got distracted by two new series (Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness and The Stolen Kingdom Series by Bethany Atazadeh), totally forgetting I had committed to finish reviewing this one.

As a note on this review, there will be spoilers for the first half of the series, so if you had an interest in trying these books for yourselves, skip this review!

Synopsis

With The Tale of Sophie and Agatha finished, Sophie and Agatha take their first steps into their final happily ever after with Sophie as the Dean for Evil and Agatha safely in Tedros’ arms on the way to be married and rule Camelot. 

However, not everything is as it seems. Agatha and Tedros arrive in Camelot to find the city in poverty, and no one seems happy to see the return of the heir of the Once and Future King. At the School for Good and Evil, Sophie and Professor Dovey discover one of the graduating class’ seniors has died during his “Quest for Glory,” murdered by a sorcerer who calls himself the Snake.

Not soon after, the Snake’s attacks spread to the rest of Woods Beyond, and the people call for protection from Tedros, the soon to be crowned Lion of Camelot. But on Tedros’ coronation day, he is unable to pull Excalibur from the stone, and a new heir appears, claiming Excalibur and leading the Camelot armies to victory against the Snake and winning the Loyalty of Camelot and the Woods Beyond.

Tedros and Agatha must now join forces with Sophie and a motley crew of her students to prove false the Lion’s parentage and unveil the false heir’s plans to destroy the Storian and the Woods Beyond itself.

What I loved

I found it very refreshing to read a story that explored what happens after “happily ever after.” I feel like we don’t have enough stories out there with this theme. The other thing that I liked was that the consequences of the characters actions were more questioned and much more steep. For example, everything Tedros did in the beginning looked like a good decision, but ultimately it came back to bite him, losing him the throne and the trust of his people. The first three books in the series didn’t have near as high stakes and the lines of right and wrong were much clearer. It was awesome to see those lines blur and grey.

What I didn’t like

As these books went on, some characters that had established powers and known parentage suddenly had unexplainable magic powers they had no control over. That seemed to come out of nowhere and looked like it was convention that was added to make the story more interesting, but it really just confused me. 

Additionally, Chainani started spreading viewpoint chapters to other characters, but not in a good way. He became very inconsistent with who he used, even using only one character’s viewpoint for an extremely short, transitionary chapter. With some of these viewpoints, he changed tenses. For me, this didn’t add to the story, but served to pull me out and confuse me. 

The last thing that I didn’t like, is I felt like by the time I got to the end of the last book, I was ready for it to be done. The plot got so convoluted, so many people died (needlessly, in my opinion) that I was speed reading through the end just to see how Tedros was going to manage to take back the throne from such a powerful enemy. 

Series Breakdown

Quests for Glory, Book 4

Rating: 8/10

Content Advisories: 
Violence: Medium
Sex: None
Romance: Low
Language: None

A Crystal of Time, Book 5

Rating: 6/10

Content Advisories: 
Violence: Medium-high, Not the most graphic I’ve read, but higher for the age group, in my opinion
Sex: None
Romance: Low
Language: Low

One True King, Book 6

Rating: 6/10

Content Advisories: 
Violence: Medium-high, Not the most graphic I’ve read, but higher for the age group, in my opinion
Sex: None
Romance: Low, two same gender couples get happily ever after, 1 same gender couple doesn’t
Language: Low

Full Series Rating: 6/10, I don’t highly recommend, but you can give it a shot if it sounds like something you’re interested in.

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