A Deadly Education - Scholomance, Bk 1 Author:Naomi Novik The story of an unwilling dark sorceress who is destined to rewrite the rules of magic. — I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life. Everyone loves Orion Lake. Everyone else, that is. Far as I’m concerned, he can keep his flashy combat magic to himself. I’m not joining his ... more »pack of adoring fans.
I don’t need help surviving the Scholomance, even if they do. Forget the hordes of monsters and cursed artifacts, I’m probably the most dangerous thing in the place. Just give me a chance and I’ll level mountains and kill untold millions, make myself the dark queen of the world.
At least, that’s what the world expects me to do. Most of the other students in here would be delighted if Orion killed me like one more evil thing that’s crawled out of the drains. Sometimes I think they want me to turn into the evil witch they assume I am. The school itself certainly does.
But the Scholomance isn’t getting what it wants from me. And neither is Orion Lake. I may not be anyone’s idea of the shining hero, but I’m going to make it out of this place alive, and I’m not going to slaughter thousands to do it, either.
Although I’m giving serious consideration to just one.« less
These days, any book with young wizards and a school is going to get compared to Harry Potter, so we'll get that out of the way: this school has no adults and there are things actively trying to kill you every day. Novik is an excellent writer and I enjoyed this very much. El is a wonderfully unlikeable likeable character. Novik does a really nice job making you want to smack her for the first half and then feeling a lot more sympathetic towards her. Obviously the start of a series as there is an annoying amount of set-up - explanations about the school and how things work in this world easily take up half the book. Told with El's first-person POV, it's not dull, but it does go on and on. We get to know a couple other likable characters but the cast is fairly small. Interesting world, good setup for further books, but the last half is definitely faster-paced than the first.