Author: Rachel Hawkins
Series: School Spirits #1
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy
Release Date: May 14, 2013
For centuries, her family has hunted magical creatures – and fifteen-year-old Izzy is the last of her line. But when her older sister vanishes without a trace, Izzy’s mom decides they need to take a break from the Brannicks’ age-old calling.
As Izzy and her mom move on to Ideal, Mississippi, however, they discover the town is 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. First, her clothes are all wrong. Second, what are these things called “friends”? Third, there’s a boy named Dex making her heart skip – but not in a bad way…so, that’s weird. For a tough girl who’s always been on her own, it feels strange to suddenly be the center of attention.
Izzy’s training taught her to never get attached, but she doesn’t know if she can solve the case alone. Can she trust her new friends to find the secret behind the hauntings before more people get hurt?
First Sentence: Killing a vampire is actually a lot easier than you’d think.
When I heard that Rachel Hawkins was writing a spin-off to the Hex Hall series, I was very excited. I loved Sophie’s humor and Archer’s antics in her Hex Hall series and was hoping that they would both make a special appearance in School Spirits. I also wanted to learn more about Izzy and her family, especially since I enjoyed reading about Izzy’s attitude in Spellbound. I was expecting so much from School Spirits.
The first thing I noticed about School Spirits was that it was lacking the overall sense of humor the Hex Hall series has. I understand that cracking jokes and making people laugh is not a part of Izzy’s straightforward and fierce personality, but I wanted some humor to keep me invested and entertained in the book. Instead, what I got was Izzy’s fierce determination to prove her worth to her mother, trying to finish her assigned job without any help.
“I’m sorry, Iz. I know you did the best you could.”
But your best wasn’t good enough.
Mom didn’t have to say the words. I felt them hanging between us in the kitchen. (12)
Dex was sadly not as magnetic and hilarious as Archer was. Sure, Dex was unique in his own way with his quirky sense of humor and his own unique clothing style, but he is no Archer. Dex didn’t have that subtle chemistry Archer has that just pulled you in. I also sadly didn’t anticipate and eagerly waited for Dex and Izzy to get together unlike how I eagerly waited for Sophie and Archer to finally get together. I was just reading about Dex and Izzy’s growing attraction and that’s it.
Squinting at me, he leaned in and said, “Seriously, I might actually be in love with you now. Would it be awkward if we made out?”
Head spinning, I stepped back. (65)
I’ve always wondered about Torin, aka the guy lurking/stuck in the mirror, ever since he first appeared in Spellbound. I personally have a theory that he’s evil, ever since we first met him. Don’t ask me why I think that way, it’s just a feeling that I have. We learned new things about Torin, but so far, we don’t have any solid answers about Torin in School Spirits, but hopefully we will have at least some answers in the sequel. I have a feeling that he would play a big role in the School Spirits series.
“I can’t,” I said, and Torin watched me with an unreadable expression.
Finally he said, “This is being a Brannick, Izzy. No one said it would be easy.”
And with that, he was gone. (242)
School Spirits left me with an ending that strongly hints that there would be a sequel in the future. However, since Rachel Hawkins is hard at work on her other series, she’s not writing any sequels to School Spirits anytime soon and is instead focusing on her new series. I don’t mind not getting the sequel to School Spirits anytime soon, unless there would be scenes where we get to see Sophie and Archer together. If that is the case, I want the sequel now.
“So where to next?”
…”I have at least three file folders for you to look through. Couple of interesting cases just came in over the last few weeks.” (296)
Okay, I kind of think it’s unfair that I’m comparing School Spirits to the Hex Hall series so much, but I just can’t help it because the Hex Hall series was what made me read School Spirits the first place. I was hoping to catch a glimpse of Sophie and Archer together in School Spirits, but that didn’t happen. Sophie, Archer, Cal, and Elodie never made an appearance in School Spirits, which is sad.
Do I recommend School Spirits? Sure, it was a good read, but here’s a warning to you Hex Hall fans, a warning that I wished I got beforehand: Sophie, Archer, Cal, Elodie, etc. do not make an appearance in School Spirits. Not one. Only Izzy, her mother, and Torin does.