Emily is a teenage girl pulled from our world into a world of magic and mystery by a necromancer who intends to sacrifice her to the dark gods. Rescued in the nick of time by an enigmatic sorcerer, she discovers that she possesses magical powers and must go to Whitehall School to learn how to master them. There, she learns that the locals believe she is a "Child of Destiny" - someone whose choices might save or damn their world, a title that earns her both friends and enemies.
A stranger in a very strange land, she may never fit in to her new world, and the necromancer is still hunting her. If Emily can't stop him, he might bring about the end of days.
©2014 Christopher G. Nuttall (P)2016 Podium Publishing
"Not Harry Potter! AND THAT'S A GOOD THING!"
It's inevitable to compare this book to Harry Potter. They are both in the Magic School Genre and the main character is considered a "Chosen One"
But this title stands on its own due to its smart and independent heroine and the time the author takes to explain the book's magic system and world building.
If you go into this book hoping for a romance, you might be disappointed. As the first book deals more with Emily getting used to the world she's transported to and the new school she's enrolled in.
I particularly enjoy how Emily uses her knowledge of modern technology to make waves in this new magical world.
If you're into characters from our world using their know-how to improve the world they've been transported to, I think you'll like this book.
"Schooled in Magic"
Very good story. Well written. Well narrated. Easy to listen to. Well worth a credit. I just bought book 2.
"This series is outstanding!"
I have been anxiously awaiting these books in audible format. The mere fact I'm purchasing every book in the series a second time should be some indication of my opinion on the quality of the tale.
"Charming alt-world magic school story."
Overall, I think this book is quite good. I have no problems with the book, but did notice I was not FULLY captivated the entire time I read it which is why I give it a 4/5.
Things that the book did extremely well -
Humans from earth travelling to other magical worlds is a fun concept but generally falls into one difficult issue: how to characterize the MC on earth while not developing any lingering attachments that would create plot holes. The author succeeds excellently in succinctly delivering the MC's character explanation and a solid reason why MC would not need/want to return to earth.
Generally, the advantages of alt-world MC's are derived from unrealistic depth of knowledge of earth technology. The MC constantly mentions these things but does not have any ridiculous insights in industrialization of a medieval society.
Also, I particularly loved all her interactions with her princess friend - the author makes a point to compare cultural values and the effects magic may have on otherwise one-sided moral choices.
Pretty solid book, I suggest a read
Tavia Gilbert does a great job of differentiating the characters and brining he story to life. I hope she narrates the entire series
Some people have compared the book to harry potter (even the main character does at a times. Some even saying it’s a rip-off. However It is really not any more then every space opera book is a rip-off after all most space operas happen at least part in space, and normally have a hero fighting an arch enemy. The same holds here the primary location for the first book is a boarding school for teaching magic, the Protagonist does not know about magic on arrival thus this leads to other similarities. But it is not a rip-off. This work is distinct and worthwhile in its own right with its own unique concepts, world building and story arch (and to be honest with much, much smarter students and teachers). I highly recommend it.
Yet as it does have a similar environment as Harry Potter; So just as if you like one space opera book you will likely enjoy others. If you liked Harry Potter you will likely enjoy this book.
"Please make the other books"
I really enjoyed this book a lot and can not wait until the rest are made into audio books.
"Intrigued enough to keep reading..."
Mild Spoilers ahead...
I have mixed feelings about this. Considering there are 10 books in this series, it might be too early for me to be overly judgmental about this. I am not typically a harsh critic in this genre. I love magic fantasy. There's simply no way not to see this as a rather blatant Harry Potter rip off. If you're a HP fan then this will either annoy you or endear you. For me it was a little of both. It is possible to craft a story about a school of magic without ripping off JK Rowling. A good example is The Magicians series by Lev Grossman, which I adore. I will try not to draw too much comparison between this book and that one though because Nuttall would not fair well at all if I were to hold his writing to that standard. Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy this and I'm planning to dive into book two immediately because I'm intrigued enough at this point that I really want to know what happens with Emily next. But the writer has a few habits that I'm not fond of. He drastically over uses the term "snorted" for one. Let's talk some specifics...
Emily is very likable. Her character is sweet and caring and smart and she's a great strong female lead. The magic system used is clever and believable. I love the concept of mana and it's very reminiscent of role playing or of video game RPG. I enjoyed the detailed explanation of how spell craft works built upon spell components. The world building isn't bad either. The writer took the time to explain politics and relate that to the story in a way that truly matters.
It steals from J.K. Rowling big time, right down to the grand master, the relationships between students and teachers, the school's defenses, the magical creatures classes, Marshal Magic parallels Defense Against the Dark Arts, Shadye parallels Voldemort, and many more blatant examples. The writing is a little bit lacking in that I wasn't nearly as captivated or drawn in as I would have liked. The battles were not as awesome as I would have liked. There was some sense of inconsistency with the aptitude of magical abilities. One minute Emily is a naive first year student who barely escapes capture by bumbling captors and just a few chapters later she's conquering a skilled necromancer in single combat by summing a black hole pocket dimension. It also felt a little too cute for me at times when I wanted it to be darker. I didn't really like Alassa at all. I wanted more character development from her roommates. I was also a bit disappointed in the grand master. I wanted way more badassery from him.
Overall though I did enjoy the story. I'm intrigued by Void. I hope to hear more about him in the next book. If you like magic fantasy fiction and you're willing to look past it being a poor man's Harry Potter, then I would recommend it.
"KEEP GOING! The last 2/3 is MUCH better."
When I first started this book the beginning seemed rushed and unpolished. Then as I get a little further it seemed WAY too similar to harry potter. BUT I['m glad I kept going. That was just the beginning setting the stage part of the book. After that the author seemed to find his stride and their own voice. The last half was way better then the first. And the 2nd book was even better. I have to give it only 3 stars for the Story but in reality it's like 2 stars for the first third and 4 stars for the last 2/3.
So get the book. Get past the beginning and you will be happy. I'd recommend to the author rewriting the beginning some. I'd imagine many of the bad reviews are from people who got ticked off at the beginning and didn't want to keep going. But I've finished the 2nd book now and I'm so glad I kept going.
Very well written.. Good read I recommend it to everyone.
I have heard her with other books and she brings a very believable person to life.
Very enjoyable.. When will book two be available.
Loved this audio book. The narrator did a good job and liked the many voices she had. Loved the story of a girl brought from our world to a world of magic, and she learns she is able to use it and develop it. Really enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone who likes fantasy novels involving magic.
"Average book, narrator seams to be going through an anxiety attack"
The book is quite poor and generic. Autor explains everything to you using the narrator instead of using plot and character interactions so it gets tedious.
The narrator sounds like she's a kid on the 1st Disney visit, a mix of excitement and anxiety.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.