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Review: Hex Hall

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins is the first book of this series with the same name. It is currently available in the U.S. in hardcover, eBook and paperback formats from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Published on March 2, 2010 by Hyperion books, the hardcover is 336 pages. The paperback edition was

published last week on February 1, 2011 and is 352 pages.

Goodreads description:

Three years ago, Sophie Mercer discovered that she was a witch. It’s gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie’s estranged father–an elusive European warlock–only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it’s her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.

By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tagalong ghost, and a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person and only vampire student on campus. Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her only friend is the number-one suspect.

As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all Prodigium, especially her.

Getting sent to Hecate Hall was punishment enough for Sophie Mercer. She already knew in her heart of hearts that she was the worst witch ever, being sent away was just adding insult to injury.

Having a love spell blow up in such epic proportions as it did was a disaster that couldn’t escape the Council’s notice and so she was sent to a school for rejects until she was eighteen and could better handle her magical abilities.

She had hoped that finally being with others of her kind would make her fit in, but after just a few days she knew that it was hopeless. To start, being made to room with the school’s only vampire student was sure to make her even more of an outcast. And the fact that her roommate may have killed someone last year was not helping matters. The last thing Sophie wanted was to be someone’s midnight snack.

Raised by a human mother in the human world put her at a huge disadvantage – her skills as a witch were laughable, her knowledge of the Prodigium was non-existent – and the secrets she discovers about her family not only make her even more unpopular, but also potentially very dangerous.

Even worse, one by one the witches at Hex Hall are being attacked. Will they be able to find out who is doing this before Sophie becomes the next victim? And if it’s not her vampire roommate Jenna that is to blame, then who is responsible? One thing is certain, her first semester at Hex Hall is anything but boring.

***

Hex Hall is a hugely entertaining story in the paranormal genre. Filled with bitchy witches, snooty fairies, drooling, hair sniffing werewolves and an arrogant vampire poet-turned-teacher, this story has a cast of characters that alone make this book worth a read.

Add to this a very sexy warlock, mysterious attacks and the secrets in Sophie’s family history and this is one hell of a story.

Author Rachel Hawkins has such an easygoing writing style, with enough humor and mystery added to keep those pages turning. The story is immediately engaging and Sophie is an absolutely adorable heroine – just the right mix of wickedly sarcastic and vulnerable.

This book is a must read for fans of paranormal series with a lighter feel, a likable and humorous main character and a puzzle that needs solving.

The next book in the series, Demonglass, is due out on March 1, 2011 and a third, as yet untitled book is due out in 2012.

Reviewer gives this book [rating=5]

On a personal note:

First – I knew it, I knew it, I knew it! Okay, if you read this book you’ll know what I mean.

Second – I loved this story. It was such a delightful, fun and seriously enjoyable book. Sophie Mercer is one of my new favorite heroines. My only wish is that it was longer. Yes, it’s a series, but now I have to wait a few weeks for book two. I cannot wait to find out what happens next.

Third – I just wish I didn’t read the description for Demonglass before I finished this, as it did slightly give away some of the ending.

Fourth – I love when I’m right about a mystery. Okay, so maybe this wasn’t the world’s most challenging puzzle, but I still like being able to guess what’s going to happen and then be right.

Fifth – This is one author that I will read every single book she writes (unless of course it’s non-fiction as I’ve been there done that with the non-fiction for a long while).

***

How I “discovered” this book:

Hex Hall is a “Just Discovered” just got a chance to read book.

This is yet another book I bought awhile ago. Probably very soon after release and it’s been in my Kindle ever since, getting shuffled further and further back. I’m not exactly sure why I didn’t start reading this right away. I have no excuse!

I actually discovered this again about a month ago and read only a few pages before I was rudely dragged away. Again, shame on me. But with the looming date for book two  and my Twitter timeline heating up with talk about Demonglass, I just knew I had to read this one as there was just so much that appealed to me from the synopsis and I knew I didn’t want to have to wait to read the next book.

And of course, once I started reading, I could not put this down!

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