Friday, June 28, 2013

School Spirits by Rachel Hawkins [Review]

School Spirits4.5 out of 5 Robots!

School Spirits by Rachel Hawkins
Series: Hex Hall
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal
Release: May 14, 2013
Hardcover: 297 Pages
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
My Copy: Purchased
Reviewer: Shannon
Buy the Book: Amazon

Book Summary:
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?

Rachel Hawkins' delightful spin-off brings the same wit and charm as the New York Times best-selling Hex Hall series. Get ready for more magic, mystery and romance!

Shannon's Thoughts:
Rachel Hawkin's Hex Hall series was a sleeper hit for me.  I had put off reading it for a long time because I thought it looked dorky, but it ended up being so much fun!  So I was VERY excited when Rachel came out with School Spirits.  School Spirits is set in the same universe as Hex Hall, but follows Izzy Brannick and her mother.  Izzy's mother decides that Izzy should go undercover at a high school to investigate some hauntings.  Izzy, who has only been homeschooled and trained to hunt monsters, isn't too sure about surviving high school.  But she manages to make some friends who are in a Paranormal club.  Izzy has to hide who she really is, but things with the ghost get tricky.

Fans of Sophie and Archer from Hex Hall may be disappointed because they do not make an appearance at all.  The only returning characters are Izzy, her mother, and Torin, the wizard stuck in the mirror.  But Hawkin's does give us a fun, new cast to learn about.  Dex, the love interest, is pretty adorable.  I also really enjoyed Izzy.  She is sweet, caring and pretty kick ass.   

School Spirits has a slightly younger feel than Hex Hall making it appropriate for younger teens.  I don't think you need to read the Hex Hall series first.  Very little is mentioned about it, except one or two sentences in passing.  One sentence does give a slight spoiler from the Hex Hall series, so read this first at your own risk.  If you don't mind small, off hand spoilers then reading School Spirits first shouldn't bother you.  The book wraps up the immediate problem at hand, but leaves several larger problems unanswered.  Hawkin's has said that there is no sequel in the works (or at least not in 2014), so it's hard to know how to take that.  On one hand, I thought there was enough wrap up that I could be satisfied with its conclusion, but on the other hand it was open ended enough that a sequel could definitely be written.  I guess I will just keep my fingers crossed that a sequel does emerge eventually!

Other books in Hex Hall series in the order that they should be read:
1. Hex Hall
2. Demonglass
3. Spell Bound
4. School Spirits

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