Darkling posted about

Chatterbox: Blab About Books

A Deadly Education
Darkling posted about...

Darkling posted about this book on the book log thread as being comparable to Harry Potter, and of course I had to obtain it. Recommendation by a CBer + Harry Potterish! = must read list.

I haven't actually finished it yet, so no drastic spoilers please, but I'm on page 144, so I have a pretty good idea of how awesome it is. It's not, like, New Favorite Book Ever level, quite, but it is objectively extremely cool, and it's also objectively very well written,  and I have evidence in writing that at least one (or two? My capricious memory informs me Hex replied to Darkling) CBer has read it, so I need to post about it and my characteristically verbose thoughts on it.

So, for those who haven't read it (or at least the first 144 pages), A Deadly Education is one of those magical-school books that draws inevitable comparisons to Harry Potter; magical teenagers in a school in England fighting darkness. Naomi Novik, who wrote it, pulls it off pretty well, though. It starts when the main character is already halfway through her time at school, so it starts right off the bat with an olderish audience and a teenage protagonist. The school---the Scholomance---is also decidedly not a magical escapist fantasyland. Hogwarts is not always that, but it has human teachers and a pretty good guarantee of surviving until graduation and a great lack of wizard-eating monsters hiding in every available shadow. There's these monsters, maleficaria (which is an awesome name), that eat wizards, but mostly young ones, because they can't protect themselves as well. So the Scholomance, as a large warehouse of young wizards, is full of maleficaria. The magic system is complicated but makes a kind of sense. The protagonist, Galadriel/preferably El, is extremely good at killing people , which is basically the opposite of Harry, who is extremely good at stopping other people from killing people.

It's also written really well---sarcastic, and clever in a way that's hard to follow at times, and which reminds me of The Raven Cycle. It's all very British.

Anyway, this is a long and very rambly post, but in summary: this is a good book. Read it if you haven't (though they swear occasionally and it's often violent, so if you don't like that, steer clear). If you have, what do you think?

submitted by Artemis , age 14, the Scholomance
(May 21, 2023 - 8:07 pm)