Sunday, June 5, 2011

Knightley Academy

(Sorry about the picture but it was difficult getting a picture without glare)
Bookworm's Ranking - 3 Worms

Storyline - Book 1 - Henry Grimm, on orphan and servant, thought life wouldn't get any better than the work he was doing and the secret lessons with a teacher at the school where he worked. But, when he is allowed to take the Knightley Academy exam, an elite school, and is the only one to pass, his world, along with the social order, is turned upside down. Now he will train to be a knight and have a better chance at a future. But when someone starts sabotaging his and his other common friends' chance at staying at Knightley, it will take everything they got to stop the attacks and stay in school.

Author - Violet Haberdasher

Age Group -  maybe 12, 13, or 14 and up

Positive - Several good things so will name the best of the best. The main character didn't want to do friend's homework (but changed a little towards the end but he was under a lot of stress too at that point), helped each other with work, regretted vengeance on bully and even saw him a little differently, they finally talked to someone about problems they were having, and, when one of their bad behaviors was discovered, admited it was their own fault for their downfall. Even though these things are all good and such, the characters were still misbehaved a ton.

Negative - Way too much bad stuff to list it all so here is the worst of the worst. Besides the bad language and making fun of teachers behind there backs, both of which only happened sporadically, there was braking of rules, the school's and one boy's disobedience to his parents, threatening a bully who was going to reveal their bad behavior, and took revenge on someone they thought was coming after them. The teachers were not always the best examples either, one hiding something the characters did that was wrong and the head teacher not giving the proscribed punishment once but you could counter with the fact a meeting was held instead to determine punishment. I also wasn't too fond of the main girl character. I can kinda see where she was coming from in wanting to be accepted and to learn what boys learn but her actions were excessive and was quite extreme in her threats to her friends' bully. She wasn't all the respectful either of her elders.

Writing - Sentence structure, story development, and character development all were good but, for some reason, seemed really slow to me. I could close book at any place and not be in mad rush to get back to it. If this hadn't been a library book, I probably could have drug this book out for months. I just couldn't get into it.

Personal Opinion - I found this book to be okay. It took too long to get to the exciting parts (about half way through) and then the reasons for why someone was ambushing them you didn't know until right before they found it or were not able to piece together before hand because you didn't get to know half the information until bad guy told them. I found it to be slow but can't piece together exactly why because it seemed to have all the stuff that would make it a good story. A lot of subtle negative things that I didn't like and can't go into too much about it because it would require a lot of info on things that happened in the book which would create a lot of spoilers and retell too much of the story. It did leave you, though, with some hope that the main characters will be better in the future so I might read book two but I will get it from library if I decide to read it.
Links - Learn more about the book and author at: http://knightleyacademy.com/

Special Notes - Book 2, The Secret Prince, out in June. A new cover has come out for this book.

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