Published: May 14th 2013 by Disney Hyperion
Series: School Spirits #1
Source: Disney via Netgalley
Fifteen-year-old Izzy Brannick was trained to fight monsters. For centuries, her family has hunted magical creatures. But when Izzy’s older sister vanishes without a trace while on a job, Izzy’s mom decides they need to take a break.
Izzy and her mom move to a new town, but they soon discover it’s not as normal as it appears. A series of hauntings has been plaguing the local high school, and Izzy is determined to prove her worth and investigate. But assuming the guise of an average teenager is easier said than done. For a tough girl who’s always been on her own, it’s strange to suddenly make friends and maybe even have a crush.
Can Izzy trust her new friends to help find the secret behind the hauntings before more people get hurt?
When I received School Spirits for review I had just started reading Demonglass and I was really excited however upon reading Spell Bound that quickly changed to apprehension. I knew that the main character in the Hex Hall spin-off series was going to be Izzy Brannick, Sophie’s cousin and I was a bit disappointed. I wasn’t sure how great Izzy would be as a main character, I did enjoy her in Spell Bound but she was just so young and I wasn’t sure how that would make for a spin-off series to do enough justice to its original.
Obviously I had no cause for alarm because I instantly took to Izzy and not to mention this takes place when she is 15, more than a year after the events in Spell Bound. I thought Izzy was actually more sweet than Sophie was(because let’s be honest, I’m obviously going to compare her). She was completely naive to the world around her and I found it endearing. Finley being missing just radiated sadness through Izzy and that really hit an emotional cord for me. I did miss the snarkiness that was so prominent in the Hex Hall series but alas, this is a new series so it has to be a bit different 😛 I adored Romy, Dex and Anderson. I thought they were fantastic friends for Izzy and I loved their unique qualities. One thing that I adored from every Rachel Hawkins book was her great secondary characters. They really supported the main character and played a strong role, unlike some secondary characters who are just in the background.
The plot is interesting and quite suspenseful. I actually didn’t know who the culprit was until the very end, about 4 pages before it was revealed so it certainly had an element of surprise. We are also introduced to “hedge” witches as well as a more in-depth “ghost” world. I enjoyed that two “new” paranormals were introduced and focused on, it added something different to the story to set it aside from Hex Hall.
Much like Rachel Hawkins other books, School Spirits is insanely easy to read. I read it in two sittings, I could not put it down. Her writing is almost addictive and she certainly knows how to draw you in. I was a bit emotional at several parts during it but that was quickly counteracted by the random wit and banter that is thrown in.
I’m extremely interested to see what’s going to happen in the second installment of School Spirits. I think I know where the story is headed but I can’t wait to read all about it 😀
Highly recommend this to ALL fans of the Hex Hall series, and to anyone who loves a light, fun paranormal read!