i received a copy of the school for good and evil from harper collins nz in exchange for an honest review.
school for good and evil review
i’ve had this book on my tbr for the longest time. i’ve been meaning to read it and just never got around to it.
finally with the upcoming release of the movie, i’ve taken the plunge and read the book.
unfortunately, it didn’t quite turn out how i’d hoped.
the first few things that i loved about this book was that it was an interesting concept (literally, taking children and putting them into a school so they can learn to be a princess/villain for fairytales). sounds good, right?
while this book is fairly chunky, it’s still a decently face read. there’s plenty of action, which is split up between worldbuilding. i was hooked the whole way.
unfortunately, there’s just far too many harmful stereotypes in this book to call it good. if you’re good, you’re beautiful (and love pink, to wear dresses and fawn over boys all day long!!). if you’re evil, you’re ugly and apparently can’t go to the ball (among other things). i really dislike reading about female characters written by a man who doesn’t know a single thing about being a girl.
the biggest concern was the unnecessary fatphobia. (if you’re beautiful, you’re obviously not going to be fat. and if you’re ugly, you have a higher chance of it). there’s plenty of examples on goodreads if you wish to learn more.
another issue i had with this book was that the characters fluctuated a lot. i either liked one or the other and it changed so often. for the most part though, sophie isn’t a nice person. agatha deserves a better friend. (also, tedros needs to be slapped. what a dick).
one of the best things about this book, however, was the emphasis on friendship. while the book focuses on true love a lot, friendship was explored a lot.
while the school for good and evil is an interesting read, it’s not something i’d go out of my way to read again.
compared to the movie?
the movie was well made and stayed true to the book. it felt a little rushed in the middle (i assume because the book was quite lengthy). but it wasn’t bad in any way. you didn’t miss any information.
i found i preferred the characters in the movie over the ones in the books. and the instances of fatphobia was non existent in the movie, which i appreciated.
if given the chance, i’d skip the book and only watch the movie.