The Last Graduate: A lowest Novel (The lowest Scholomance) outlet sale

The Last Graduate: A lowest Novel (The lowest Scholomance) outlet sale

The Last Graduate: A lowest Novel (The lowest Scholomance) outlet sale
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The specter of graduation looms large as Naomi Novik’s groundbreaking, New York Times bestselling trilogy continues in the stunning sequel to A Deadly Education.

In Wisdom, Shelter. That’s the official motto of the Scholomance. I suppose you could even argue that it’s true—only the wisdom is hard to come by, so the shelter’s rather scant. 
 
Our beloved school does its best to devour all its students—but now that I’ve reached my senior year and have actually won myself a handful of allies, it’s suddenly developed a very particular craving for me. And even if I somehow make it through the endless waves of maleficaria that it keeps throwing at me in between grueling homework assignments, I haven’t any idea how my allies and I are going to make it through the graduation hall alive. 
 
Unless, of course, I finally accept my foretold destiny of dark sorcery and destruction. That would certainly let me sail straight out of here. The course of wisdom, surely.
 
But I’m not giving in—not to the mals, not to fate, and especially not to the Scholomance. I’m going to get myself and my friends out of this hideous place for good—even if it’s the last thing I do.

With keen insight and mordant humor, Novik reminds us that sometimes it is not enough to rewrite the rules—sometimes, you need to toss out the entire rulebook.

The magic of the Scholomance trilogy will continue in 2022

Review

Praise for A Deadly Education

“The can’t-miss fantasy of fall 2020, a brutal coming-of-power story steeped in the aesthetics of dark academia . . . A Deadly Education will cement Naomi Novik’s place as one of the greatest and most versatile fantasy writers of our time.” BookPage

“Eyeball-meltingly brilliant—Novik is, quite simply, a genius.” —Kiersten White, New York Times bestselling author of And I Darken

“Chillingly lovely.” Library Journal (starred review)

“Naomi Novik has written the wizard-school book that we all deserve! Constant peril, a fresh magic system, and a deeper discussion of how educational inequality currently functions than I ever expected to see in fantasy.” —Hank Green, author of A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor

“A must-read.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Novik skillfully combines sharp humor with layers of imagination to build a fantasy that delights on every level.” —Stephanie Garber, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Caraval series

“The start of a fabulous dark and monstrous trilogy.” Booklist (starred review)

“The Scholomance is the dark school of magic I’ve been waiting for.” —Katherine Arden, New York Times bestselling author of The Bear and the Nightingale

“Novik’s light touch, dark whimsy, and sense of humor make it hard to put down.” Locus

“A gorgeous book about monsters and monstrousness, chockablock with action, cleverness, and wit.” —Holly Black, #1 New York Times bestselling author

About the Author

Naomi Novik is the acclaimed author of A Deadly Education, the Temeraire series, and the award-winning novels Uprooted and Spinning Silver. She is a founder of the Organization for Transformative Works and the Archive of Our Own. She lives in New York City with her family and six computers.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter 1

Vipersac

Keep far away from Orion Lake.

Most of the religious or spiritual people I know—­and to be fair, they’re mostly the sort of people who land in a vaguely pagan commune in Wales, or else they’re terrified wizard kids crammed into a school that’s trying to kill them—­regularly beseech a benevolent and loving all-­wise deity to provide them with useful advice through the medium of miraculous signs and portents. Speaking as my mother’s daughter, I can say with authority that they wouldn’t like it if they got it. You don’t want mysterious unexplained advice from someone you know has your best interests at heart and whose judgment is unerringly right and just and true. Either they’ll tell you to do what you want to do anyway, in which case you didn’t need their advice, or they’ll tell you to do the opposite, in which case you’ll have to choose between sullenly following their advice, like a little kid who has been forced to brush her teeth and go to bed at a reasonable hour, or ignoring it and grimly carrying on, all the while knowing that your course of action is guaranteed to lead you straight to pain and dismay.

If you’re wondering which of those two options I picked, then you must not know me, as pain and dismay were obviously my destination. I didn’t even need to think about it. Mum’s note was infinitely well-­meant, but it wasn’t long: My darling girl, I love you, have courage, and keep far away from Orion Lake. I read the whole thing in a single glance and tore it up into pieces instantly, standing right there among the little freshmen milling about. I ate the scrap with Orion’s name on it myself and handed the rest out at once.

“What’s this?” Aadhya said. She was still giving me narrow-­eyed indignation.

“It lifts the spirits,” I said. “My mum put it in the paper.”

“Yes, your mum, Gwen Higgins,” Aadhya said, even more coolly. “Who you’ve mentioned so often to us all.”

“Oh, just eat it,” I said, as irritably as I could manage after having just downed my own piece. The irritation wasn’t as hard to muster up as it might’ve been. I can’t think of anything I’ve missed in here, including the sun, the wind, or a night’s sleep in safety, nearly as much as I’ve missed Mum, so that’s what the spell gave me: the feeling of being curled up on her bed with my head in her lap and her hand stroking gently over my hair, the smell of the herbs she works with, the faint croaking of frogs outside the open door and the wet earth of a Welsh spring. It would’ve lifted my spirits enormously if only I hadn’t been worrying deeply at the same time what she was trying to tell me about Orion.

The fun possibilities were endless. The best one was that he was doomed to die young and horribly, which given his penchant for heroics was reasonably predictable anyway. Unfortunately, falling in something or other with a doomed hero isn’t the sort of thing Mum would warn me off. She’s very much of the gather ye rosebuds while ye may school of thought.

Mum would only warn me off something bad, not something painful. So obviously Orion was the most brilliant maleficer ever, concealing his vile plans by saving the lives of everyone over and over just so he could, I don’t know, kill them himself later on? Or maybe Mum was worried that he was so annoying that he’d drive me to become the most brilliant maleficer ever, which was probably more plausible, since that’s supposedly my own doom anyway.

Of course, the most likely option was that Mum didn’t know herself. She’d just had a bad feeling about Orion, for no reason she could’ve told me even if she’d written me a ten-­page letter on both sides. A feeling so bad that she’d hitchhiked all the way to Cardiff to find the nearest incoming freshman, and she’d asked his parents to send me her one-­gram note. I reached out and poked Aaron in his tiny skinny shoulder. “Hey, what did Mum give your parents for bringing the message?”

He turned round and said uncertainly, “I don’t think she did? She said she didn’t have anything to pay with, but she asked to talk to them in private, and then she gave it to me and my mam squeezed a bit of my toothpaste out to make room.”

That might sound like nothing, but nobody wastes any of their inadequate four-­year weight allowance on ordinary toothpaste; I brush with baking soda out of the alchemy lab supply cabinets myself. If Aaron had brought any at all, it was enchanted in some way: useful when you aren’t going to see a dentist for the next four years. He could have traded that one squeeze of it to someone with bad toothache for a week of extra dinners, easily. And his parents had taken that away from their own kid—­Mum had asked his parents to take that away from their own kid—­just to get me the warning. “Great,” I said bitterly. “Here, have a bite.” I gave him one of the pieces of the note, too. He probably needed it as much as ever in his life, after just being sucked into the Scholomance. It’s better than the almost inevitable death waiting for wizard kids outside, but not by much.

The food line opened up just then, and the ensuing stampede interfered with my brooding, but Liu asked me quietly, “Everything okay?” as we lined up.

I just stared at her blankly. It wasn’t mindreading or anything—­she had an eye for small details, putting things together, and she indicated my pocket, where I’d put the last scrap of the note—­the note whose actual contents I hadn’t shared, even while I’d passed out pieces with an enchantment that should have precluded all brooding. My confusion was because—­she’d asked. I wasn’t used to anyone inquiring after me, or for that matter even noticing when I’m upset. Unless I’m sufficiently upset that I start conveying the impression that I’m about to set everyone around me on fire, which does in fact happen on a not infrequent basis.

I had to think about it to decide that I didn’t, actually, want to talk about the note. I’d never had the option. And having it meant—­that I was telling Liu the truth when I nodded to say yes, everything’s okay, and smiled at her, the expression feeling a bit odd and stretchy round my mouth, unfamiliar. Liu smiled back, and then we were in the line, and we all focused on the job of filling our trays.

We’d lost our freshmen in the shuffle: they go last, obviously, and we now had the dubious privilege of going first. But nothing stops you taking extra for their benefit, if you can afford it, and at least for today we could. The walls of the school were still a bit warm from the end-­of-­term cleansing cycle. Any of the maleficaria that hadn’t been crisped to fine ash were all just starting to creep out of the various dark corners they’d hidden in, and the food was as unlikely to be contaminated as it ever was. So Liu took extra milk cartons for her cousins, and I took seconds of pasta for Aaron, a bit grudgingly. Technically he wasn’t owed anything for bringing the note, not by me; by Scholomance etiquette, that’s all settled outside. But he hadn’t got anything for it outside, after all.

It was odd being almost first out of the queue into the nearly empty cafeteria, with the enormously long tail of kids still snaking along the walls, tripled up, the sophomores poking the freshmen and pointing them at the ceiling tiles and the floor drains and the air vents on the walls, which they’d want to keep an eye on in the future. The last of the folded-­up tables were scuttling back into the open space that had been left for the freshman rush, and unfolding back into place with squeals and thumps. My friend Nkoyo—­could I think of her as a friend, too? I thought perhaps I could, but I hadn’t been handed a formal engraved notice yet, so I’d be doubtful a while longer—­had got out in front with her best mates; she was at a prime table, positioned in the ring that’s exactly between the walls and the line, under only two ceiling tiles, with the nearest floor drain four tables away. She was standing up tall and waving us over, easy to spot: she was wearing a brand-­new top and baggy trousers, each in a beautiful print of mixed wavy lines that I was fairly sure had enchantments woven in. This is the day of the year when everyone breaks out the one new outfit per year most of us brought in—­my own extended wardrobe sadly got incinerated freshman year—­and she had clearly been saving this one for senior year. Jowani was bringing over two big jugs of water while Cora did the perimeter wards.

It was odd, walking through the cafeteria over to join them. Even if we hadn’t been offered an actual invitation, there were loads of good tables still open, and all the bad ones. I’ve occasionally ended up with my pick of tables before, but that’s always been a bad and risky move born of getting to the cafeteria too early, usually as an act of desperation when I’d had too many days of bad luck with my meals. Now it was just the ordinary course of things.

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4.7 out of 54.7 out of 5
2,108 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Sherry M.
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Absolutely terrific boarding school fantasy (but that cliffhanger!)
Reviewed in the United States on September 28, 2021
I guess I might have expected it from the way the first book concluded, but this one should have a warning up front about the cliffhanger ending. It is BRUTAL. After spending most of her time in the deadly dangerous Scholomance trying to survive all alone, El... See more
I guess I might have expected it from the way the first book concluded, but this one should have a warning up front about the cliffhanger ending. It is BRUTAL.

After spending most of her time in the deadly dangerous Scholomance trying to survive all alone, El enters her final year on a positive note. She’s got friends now, as well an offer of a helpful alliance with other powerful student wizards that might allow all of them to make it out alive on graduation day. El even has a boy who likes her, Orion Lake, and she can’t help liking him back, despite her mother’s warning to stay away from him. But then the school gives El terrible course load and allows the monstrous maleficaria to target her rather than the other students, and she starts to wonder whether she’ll make it through the rest of the year, much less survive graduation. The Scholomance seems to have it in for El, but why?

Well, there is a reason, but to find out, you’ll need to read the book. 😉

The worldbuilding in this series is masterful. In my opinion, it blows Harry Potter and Hogwarts out of the water as a fantasy. The Scholomance is absolutely insane, but Novik makes it seem almost plausible. (Why shouldn’t every student’s room have a way for them to fall into a mystical void, really?) The magic system is extremely complicated, but it’s very well thought out and consistent, which makes the fantastical feel more real.

I just love El, too. She fights so hard against her natural bent toward evil magic, but she can’t quite master being (horrors) nice. Grumpy El doesn’t suffer fools gladly, and unfortunately for El, she’s attending the Scholomance with far too many of those. That includes Orion, and El being El, she doesn’t hesitate to let him know when he’s being an utter idiot. She castigates herself just as often, though, because El’s own behavior is growing ever more idiotic, as she finds herself increasingly looking out for others rather than own survival. For a wizard with seemingly unlimited power and a gift for destruction, El might just turn out to be as much of a hero as that numptie Orion.

So, I’m glued to the page through the entire story, entranced by El and her world and her adventures and rooting for her and the others to make it out alive, and then—that final line. WHY??? You had me on the hook for the last book anyway! It’s just wanton cruelty.

Highly recommended, but you should brace yourself for the ending. It’s a doozy.

A copy of this book was provided through NetGalley for me to review; all opinions expressed are my own.
41 people found this helpful
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Kindle Customer
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Would be five stars...
Reviewed in the United States on September 28, 2021
... Except I can''t stand the ending. WHY??? WHY??? WHY??? Does Naomi Novik have to be so mean to me? I was incredibly patient and waited a whole year for THIS one, which I (mistakenly) thought was the end of the series. Why must I wait another year to know how it actually... See more
... Except I can''t stand the ending. WHY??? WHY??? WHY??? Does Naomi Novik have to be so mean to me? I was incredibly patient and waited a whole year for THIS one, which I (mistakenly) thought was the end of the series. Why must I wait another year to know how it actually ends???
20 people found this helpful
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J. Hanses
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Did you know China and the US are on the brink of war?
Reviewed in the United States on September 29, 2021
With the optimism of youth, our heroes devise a plan to save every child from the mals awaiting them in the world, removing the reason for the Scholomance''s death march to graduation. El can graduate a hero rather than an evil sorceress and everyone can go home with plans... See more
With the optimism of youth, our heroes devise a plan to save every child from the mals awaiting them in the world, removing the reason for the Scholomance''s death march to graduation. El can graduate a hero rather than an evil sorceress and everyone can go home with plans to call each other afterwards.
It ends about where you''d expect.

Overall, I''m happy to have the second entry in the series, and I look forward to seeing where the graduates go from here.

My only question is: Did they lose an editor along the way?

The initial book had to world build because it was a new world and had to introduce characters and setting. The second book had to restate some of the previous world building for new readers. Unfortunately, it then gets carried away with restating the same information over and over and over again. Did you hear that Bangkok enclave got destroyed and China and the US were looking at going to war over it? It seems that the book really really really wants you to remember this info. It''s a book and the info isn''t even relevant to THIS story. If we forget, we can always go back and reread. And it''s not even restated in new and interesting ways to try to reach people who might retain information differently. It''s part of the endless narrative world building globs that keep me from rating this book higher. An editor really should have struck this info out in red pen when it reappeared. Or at least requested the author reframe it in dialogue to vary the presentation and make it relevant to someone even as a lesson. We''re even given a great set up for that, as El is shut into a room with 8 freshmen every Wednesday, and they could talk and explain things to each other and give opinions.

But no. It''s spoon fed world building globs for you, dear reader.

So if you liked the first book, definitely read the second. The overall story and concept is still entertaining. But expect to feel kind of tired and bored at various points as the narrative constantly digresses in ways that are repetitive and apropos of nothing.
14 people found this helpful
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Lucinda A.
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
And now we wait for a year...
Reviewed in the United States on September 28, 2021
Was it worth staying up all night to read the sequel? Maybe not. Would I do it again? Hell yeah! Contrary to other reviews here, I wasn’t really impressed with the world building. Unless all the details about the design of Scholomance turn out to be incredibly relevant in... See more
Was it worth staying up all night to read the sequel? Maybe not. Would I do it again? Hell yeah! Contrary to other reviews here, I wasn’t really impressed with the world building. Unless all the details about the design of Scholomance turn out to be incredibly relevant in the third volume, those didn’t seem necessary to advance the plot. For the first quarter of the book, the main characters are also, frankly, a bit of a bore. Orion is as schematic as ever (his mode: on/off), and El—despite being delightfully smart and sarcastic—seems to indulge quite often in the pity party of “I can kill the world with a burp, poor strong me” variety. But, once we get over that hurdle, the action picks up nicely, in a blend of “Hunger Games” and “Ender’s Game,” culminating with what everyone has already described as the mother of all cliffhangers.

I loved how the last half of the book built toward the final. I still don’t think that the motivation for the final action is fully fleshed out (a bit too much self-righteousness for that), but there is a sense of inevitability about the final that the entire series so far has been hinting toward. We don’t have a lot of answers at the end (if anything, the plot thickens), but we have romance, acceptance, noble deeds, and collective strategizing. That will have to last us until the third volume.
14 people found this helpful
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MS
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
3.5 stars
Reviewed in the United States on September 29, 2021
The first half of the book I was extremely disappointed. A lot of the things that I loved in the first book felt annoying or redundant. There were a lot setting dumps and self-pitying monologues that were not necessary. The pace was slow. But the book really picked up... See more
The first half of the book I was extremely disappointed. A lot of the things that I loved in the first book felt annoying or redundant. There were a lot setting dumps and self-pitying monologues that were not necessary. The pace was slow.
But the book really picked up after the 50% mark. The romance felt more real, the characters were given more depth, and the plot was actually interesting.
I would have never predicted the story would go in the direction that it took. El is no longer the underdog, or the loner, or the loser. I’m not sure how I like that. Aadhya and Liu are amazing characters. The relationship between the three is great. I think all the female characters are perfection. They have so much depth. I do think I would appreciate it more if there was more dialogue in general. Less introspective rants, and more character interaction.
The ending was a killer cliffhanger. Killer.
Overall: disappointing but I still need to see how it ends. And I absolutely love El.
10 people found this helpful
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JCT Chambers
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Yeah I liked it
Reviewed in the United States on September 28, 2021
I was in a meeting this morning when I realized this book was in my Kindle Library (since I''d ordered it ahead of time, it just appeared...that was at 9 AM...it''s now 1 AM...I have to stop reading full books in a single day. I literally devoured this book, and... See more
I was in a meeting this morning when I realized this book was in my Kindle Library (since I''d ordered it ahead of time, it just appeared...that was at 9 AM...it''s now 1 AM...I have to stop reading full books in a single day.

I literally devoured this book, and I''m so mad at myself for not rationing it, now I have to wait another year for the next installment. It was soo good, I loved the continuing character development and world-building. The growing relationships and the new characters were fantastic. I would definitely recommend this book and the series to anyone who enjoys strong female characters and great fantasy novels.
6 people found this helpful
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M L Etchison
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
What? What? What!
Reviewed in the United States on September 28, 2021
Scholomance2 This sequel to Deadly Education is amazing! The author set herself a very high bar and cleared it with ease. We left with Mum’s warning to stay away from Orion Lake, and that’s where we pick up. El’s parentage is known to her friends, not... See more
Scholomance2

This sequel to Deadly Education is amazing! The author set herself a very high bar and cleared it with ease.

We left with Mum’s warning to stay away from Orion Lake, and that’s where we pick up. El’s parentage is known to her friends, not just Orion now, and one wonders if the bonds will hold in the face of this revelation. Only passing out the wellness bites staves of the discussion.

But big changes are afoot as the seniors all explore their alliances and things shift, as more personalities are revealed. El has group of freshmen she can’t shake; and when it comes to light that an entire enclave disappeared just before induction, new lines are drawn.

It’s refreshing to read this presentation of teenage rules in a space with no adults, that doesn’t involve them devouring each other. But more changes are coming, and there are twists that will surprise.

I hope we are not cut off from these characters...
2 people found this helpful
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Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A magnificent, and magnificently satisfying, rollercoaster
Reviewed in the United States on September 29, 2021
Goodness. What a glorious follow up for the first book. The pacing, the twists, the character building, the reveals (even the school itself develops, or reveals, hidden layers of character and intent) - it''s all top notch. Novik effortlessly soars right past all the... See more
Goodness. What a glorious follow up for the first book. The pacing, the twists, the character building, the reveals (even the school itself develops, or reveals, hidden layers of character and intent) - it''s all top notch. Novik effortlessly soars right past all the expected pitfalls - the huge change in pacing needed to shift from a book that covers two weeks to a book that covers an entire year, the challenge of upping the odds after the first book showed us just how much the heroes can achieve when motivated, the difficulty of topping the amazing climax from book 1....
And she Topps the cliffhanger too, leaving us with a gaping, horribly distressing ending that we will just have to live with now.
Bravo. And whyyyyy. And please please release book three asap.
3 people found this helpful
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Top reviews from other countries

nlondonhousewife
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Unbelievably good, bittersweet
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 28, 2021
Damn the ending! It leaves you believing that this could be the end of the series, and it would work brilliantly however bittersweet, but it also leaves the reader really desperate for it not to be the actual ending, desperate for just one more book in the series. And then...See more
Damn the ending! It leaves you believing that this could be the end of the series, and it would work brilliantly however bittersweet, but it also leaves the reader really desperate for it not to be the actual ending, desperate for just one more book in the series. And then you''re left wondering about some of the open questions such as the prophecies around the female lead, and how exactly she brings about the end or destruction of the elite enclaves something her great-great-grandmother interpreted as bringing death and destruction on a horrendous villainous scale. But what if it isn''t that obvious? What if she brings the elite enclave to an end by destroying the reasons for building enclave in the first place, by making the world outside of them safe for everyone? And if they have finally rid the world of the monsters, then maybe there''s no place for the main male character out in that world anymore because what good is a monster killer without monsters? SO maybe this is the final book. But I so want there to be another ending. I want the female lead to get her own vision come true, to make the protection of enclaves available to everyone, by using what she''s learned and sharing it with the people outside of the elite enclaves? I want her to find a way for the male character to keep learning, to want things other than monster killing, or maybe to keep killing the monsters that are still left in the world, the human ones, the maleficers. And a little bit desperate went to check on the author''s site & looked for confirmation another book was coming - YES!!!!
3 people found this helpful
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JuSchl
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
She didn''t....
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 28, 2021
Once again a book I picked up and didn''t put down until I finished it. Not exactly on the worldbuilding level of the first book, but seriously... that end. The whole story solution is elegant, gripping, and emotional. Read the first book. Read the second book. Read them...See more
Once again a book I picked up and didn''t put down until I finished it. Not exactly on the worldbuilding level of the first book, but seriously... that end. The whole story solution is elegant, gripping, and emotional. Read the first book. Read the second book. Read them again. Will there be a third? I don''t know. The end of the second book is vicious and perfect. But I''d love a third one, because I do enjoy this dark, brutal world a lot.
4 people found this helpful
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sjhigbee
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Gripping sequel in this unusual magical school adventure...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 12, 2021
I’m not sure if it’s because I was a teacher, but the magical schools sub-genre is a favourite and I thoroughly enjoyed A Deadly Education. Though I was a bit fed up with the cliff-hanger at the end – and I’m warning you now, there’s another at the end of The Last Graduate....See more
I’m not sure if it’s because I was a teacher, but the magical schools sub-genre is a favourite and I thoroughly enjoyed A Deadly Education. Though I was a bit fed up with the cliff-hanger at the end – and I’m warning you now, there’s another at the end of The Last Graduate. El isn’t such a hardcore, in-your-face character this time around. For starters, she now has a loyal group of friends, and other alliances with a handful of enclave kids who have far more resources and protections than those without that kind of advantage. And it’s just as well she’s got more going for her as this year, as the School has become a lot more aggressive – with El apparently a prime target. Novik writes action scenes really well and has a glorious suite of delightfully revolting monsters that squish satisfyingly when they meet their messy end. This series would make a wonderful TV series. However, if you were one of those who found the descriptions of the magic and the world outside a tad tedious in A Deadly Education (I didn’t…), then you won’t fare any better in this offering. El has a lot to say about the political situation, the history of the school and the very complex magic system, particularly in the first half of the book. It didn’t bother me, partly because we need to know all the information, partly because I found it fascinating anyway. I’m a huge fan of El, who has a natural talent for horrific destruction but has had it dinned into her by her adorable mother, that she can’t afford to give into those instinct at all. And Novik manages to depict her absolutely following the rules without her coming off as sickeningly good. El is bad-tempered, overly cynical, far too touchy and apt to push away those who genuinely want to befriend her – but despite that, she is rigid in trying to avoid doing harm. I really like the fact that she isn’t the overwhelmed, put-upon victim doing the best she can in awful circumstances, either. She’s far too powerful for that. That doesn’t stop her from becoming increasingly trapped in a terrible situation, where the right thing to do is plain terrifying. I also enjoyed the humour, albeit a tad dark-edged, that runs through this story. And I am impressed with Novik’s successful portrayal of a Brit main character, complete with the sardonic street-wise dialogue. While there is plenty of action throughout, the pace and tension really picks up in the second half of the book, which was difficult to put down once it hit its stride. I was glad Himself had warned me about that ending, though – otherwise I think it would have gone flying across the room. Which is why I’ve passed the warning on. All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable, entertaining read – and I’m very much looking forward to the third book in the series. The ebook arc copy of The Last Graduate was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in return for an honest opinion of the book. 9/10
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Peter Rihan
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Loved these books
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 28, 2021
Greatly enjoyed these books. El’s acerbic commentary and observations had me laughing out loud at times. The concept was engaging and I devoured each of the books in one sitting. The odd spelling or usage glitch did not detract from my enjoyment. Sadly it seems this is the...See more
Greatly enjoyed these books. El’s acerbic commentary and observations had me laughing out loud at times. The concept was engaging and I devoured each of the books in one sitting. The odd spelling or usage glitch did not detract from my enjoyment. Sadly it seems this is the end of the story though there are some intriguing loose ends … destroying the Scholomance surely does not remove all the mals in the world and someone (El?) is going to need to find a way to save Orion. Possibly room for a follow up?
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Watergypsy
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Talk about a cliffhanger!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 30, 2021
I’m absolutely loving this series, the worldbuilding is still excellent and some of the snark from El made me laugh out loud as I was reading. The plot kept me guessing, and the ending means that I’ll be pre-ordering the third book as soon as it’s available! I was thrown by...See more
I’m absolutely loving this series, the worldbuilding is still excellent and some of the snark from El made me laugh out loud as I was reading. The plot kept me guessing, and the ending means that I’ll be pre-ordering the third book as soon as it’s available! I was thrown by Amazon listing this as book 2 of 2 in the series but it’s listed as a trilogy on Naomi Novik’s website with the final book due in 2022.
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