21 April 2010

Review: Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins

Title: Hex Hall
Author: Rachel Hawkins
Series: Hex Hall #1
Genre: YA
Release Date: March 2nd 2010

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 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.

Sophie discovered when she was 12 years old that she was a witch. Her mother and her moved around a lot so she wouldn't be discovered, but in their last stop Sophie tries to do a spell in her high school prom that goes horribly wrong. Her punishment, finish her education in Hex Hall, a "reformatory" for trouble making Prodigium (witches, faeries and shifters).

In her first day in Hex Hall she makes a friend, Jenna, who is her roommate and also the only vampire in the reformatory; makes three enemies, three dark witches who wanted her to join their coven, but when Sophie refuses, the witches decide to make her life a living hell and she also crushes on Archer, a bad-boy warlock who saved her from being eaten by a werewolf the first day, but who's also the boyfriend of Elodie, the leader of the dark coven.

As time passes, Sophie discovers that she knows next to nothing about being a witch, she also doesn't know anything about Prodigium politics, but when one student is attacked and almost killed by draining their blood and everyone blames Jenna, Sophie will try to uncover the truth, even if it means discovering dark secrets, like what happened to Holly, the student that was killed the year before and who also was Jenna's roomate and part of the dark coven.

At the beginning, Sophie is a very innocent character, she got into trouble but always trying to help people. When she arrives at Hex Hall, she realizes that everyone know more than she does, even about herself. As the story moves forward, she matures little by little.

One of the strong points of the book were the relationships between Sophie and Jenna, Archer and Sophie and Elodie and Sophie. With Jenna, at first she's a little scared of her, and she also suspects that she hurt her last roommate, but then they start trusting each other, and even though there are some "accidents", they become best friends. With Archer, she has a love-hate thing going. She crushes on him, but that doesn't stop her from telling him what she thinks, and that makes them become friends. And with Elodie, I felt that one of their main problems was jealousy. Elodie was jealous because Sophie was more powerful and Sophie was jealous because Elodie had Archer.

This story was a light read, with a nice pace, with some big cliffhangers at the end, but very enjoyable. I can't wait to see how the author ties up the loose ends in the next book.

Memorable Lines:

"Actually, is Archer Cross, and I'm the first one. Now what about you?" He squinted. "Let's see ... brown hair, freckles, who girl-next-door vibe going on ... Aliie? Lacie? Definitely something cutesy ending in ie."
You know those times when your mouth moves but no sounds actually comes out? Yeah, that's pretty much what happened. And then, of course, my mom took that opportunity to end her conversation with Justin's parents and call out, "Sophie! Wait up."
"I knew it" Archer laughed. "See you, Sophie," He called over his shoulder as he disappeared into the house.



Melissa (My World...in words and pages) said...

This book sounds like a great light fun read. I have it added to the list to get at some point here. Thank you for the great review. I really learned about the book.