Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Fairy Tale Reform School: Flunked ~ Jen Calonita (earc) review [@JenCalonita @JabberwockyKids]

Fairy Tale Reform School: Flunked (#1)
Sourecebooks Jabberwocky
March 3, 2015
256 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from TBD/or Amazon

Would you send a villain to do a hero's job? An exciting new twisted fairy tale series from award-winning author Jen Calonita.

Full of regret, Cinderella's wicked stepmother, Flora, has founded the Fairy Tale Reform School with the mission of turning the wicked and criminally mischievous into upstanding members of Enchantasia.

Impish, sassy 12-year-old Gilly has a history of petty theft and she's not too sorry about it. When she lifts a hair clip, she gets tossed in reform school-for at least three months. But when she meets fellow students Jax and Kayla, she learns there's more to this school than its sweet mission. There's a battle brewing and she starts to wonder: can a villain really change?

 Flunked is a thoroughly enjoyable tale. Aside from maybe Once Upon a Time, characters from different fairy tales a rarely in each other's stories. It works there and it works in Fairy Tale Reform School: Flunked. It features not only Cinderella's wicked stepmother, but Ariel's (reformed) sea monster, Little Red Riding Hood's wolf and Snow White's evil queen as faculty members at Fairy Tale Reform School.

They've reformed their ways and are not working to educate the youth of Enchantasia, to prevent tehm from becoming an 'evil' villain in the future.

It's far from Gilly's idea of an ideal education. Yes, she steals, but no she isn't sorry. It isn't something she does simply for fun - and she's not stealing from those who can't handle the theft.

Unsurprisingly, not everyone - including the law - agree with her. Now, the 12-year-old is a student at Fairy Tale Reform School.

Gilly is a fun, spirited character and it is fun to follow along on her journey.Fairy Tale Reform School is, indeed, an interesting educational institution. As Gilly tries to fit in, to learn the roles and expectations while still being herself (and not to get too on a specific teacher's bad side), readers get to enjoy the world Jen Calonita has created. The school itself is creative and fun, but ti's how all of the characters work into the story, the magical world and how everyone and everything interacts that really make the story.

With the adult characters in the story (at the school) being supposedly reformed villains, both Gilly and readers have to question whether they've all really changed . . . or if there's still a bit of villain in them, after all.

Fairy Tale Reform School: Flunked is a Middle Grade novel but one that should also be picked up by Young Adult readers. It's fun, creative, entertaining and humorous. I loved meeting Gilly, Jax, Kayla, the faculty and other students at Fairy Tale Reform School. It's a wonderful world Jen Calonita has imagined and introduced us to - hopefully it isn't our last adventure in Enchantasia.

Want to know more about Flunked, read an excerpt or even enter to win a copy? Check out the Spotlight Post from earlier this morning!

digital review copy received, via NetGalley, from publisher

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