Title: The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy
Author: Nikki Loftin
Publication Date: August 2012
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy/Horror
Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone
Synopsis can be found here.
Lorelei’s school mysterious burns down and so Splendid Academy is their only choice. It helps that Splendid Academy is a new and beautiful school, a sparkling playground, prestine classrooms and free breakfast and lunch every day. It helps that the principal has taken a shine to Lorelei. But something isn’t right in this perfect school where the kids eat candy all day and create their own schedules. Something isn’t right in the way Lorelei’s teacher looks at her. And what isn’t right might just be too sweet to see.
A cute read, this book is the perfect balance of horror and fairy tale. Splendid Academy is more than meets the eye and I don’t want to say too much about it because I don’t want to spoil the fun. I liked Lorelei and Andrew, two very different children who are equally suspicious of the faculty at Splendid. I like that Andrew is not a typical good looking kid and has a sense of humor to him. Of course there are absentee parents. Dad is pretty oblivious to anything his children are doing, focusing only on his new wife, their new stepmother, Molly. Molly, while not quite evil, is not a nice person and though I tried to like her and see her as a sympathetic character, which I think the reader is supposed to be to her by the end, I just couldn’t do it.
And that brings me to the ending. I enjoyed the little bit of adventure and the ending scary scene right out of a fairy tale. But overall, the ending left me feeling a little deflated. Again, I don’t want to give too much away, but personally I would have liked to see more closure on the family side of things.
This book is not for everyone. It’s pretty obvious what is going on at the school and I’ll be honest, I almost put the book down half way. The first half of the book held my attention, but then it started to drag and I was wishing it was a bit shorter.
Cute and with a fairy tale twist, this book is a fun easy read that kids will enjoy.
And then it will probably make them want to read fairy tales.
Rating: 5 Ok, decent like Diet Coke