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The School for Good and Evil
Soman Chainani
Awaken - Katie Kacvinsky I was torn between 3 and 4 stars, so I am settling at 3.5, but since GR doens't allow half stars, I'm putting this at 3 stars.

The basic story is that Maddie lives an incredibly sheltered life in the yera 2060 where people rarely go out and have face-to-face interactions with one another. Everyone is glued to their computers and everything is done digitally, including school. Maddie's father is the one who created the DS (Digital School) ciriculum. Maddie meanwhile is rebelious and wants more to life. When Justin enters her life, he starts to open her up to experincing life away from the digital world.

The Good:
The book was very interesting and on point for where society is right now. With everyone hiding behind ipads, ipods, iphones and other such gadgets, it's a story relevant to the times. I liked the story and the writing and overall I think it was a good read. However, there are a few points below which weakened it from being execellent...

The Bad:
Around mid-way the pacing slows a bit. That wouldn't be so bad if Maddie wasn't constantly pining away for Justin. Now, I will say I am glad that Justin constantly tries to reinforce the lesson that Maddie needs to learn to be independant. I like that he seems to honestly want her to make her own decisions and make her own choices and discover herself as a person. That is refreshing to see. However, I cringed every time the author used the word "sexy" to describe Justin. It just got under my skin and she did it. Alot. Too much space is wasted on Maddie describing just how incredibly good looking and swoon-worthy Justin is. We get it. Move on. Sure, maybe it is accurate to a juvinile mind frame, but I think it gets really repetative after a while.