Hawkins, R. (2010). Hex hall. New York: Disney/Hyperion Books. ISBN:9781423121305. Paperback. $4.99.
Annotation: Sophie has always known she was different because of her Warlock father, but it isn’t until she uses her powers in front of normal humans that she realizes how much. At Hex Hall Sophie is still pretty different and realizes that she may be the only one looking for the true person or being who is harming other students.
What if you had powers? Sounds fun right? Wrong. So wrong. After a bad prom night where Sophie reveals her magical abilities to normal humans, she’s being exiled. Where? Hex Hall, a place for freaks like her. On her first day she gains a vampire roommate, a crush, and three model pretty enemies. Sophie finds out, though, that her roommate, the only person she gets along with, is suspected of attacking students at school. But Sophie isn’t buying it. In fact, she’s pretty sure she knows who is harming the students and hopes to clear her roommate’s name.
Hex Hall is the first in a trilogy, so Sophie and her friends and frenemies have room to grow. I liked this series because it combines a lot of different mythical creatures with other lore, to allow for easier world building of Hex Hall. If you like City of Bones by Cassandra Clare or even Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead, you might like this book. Since it is a series, as always, check it out at your local library before you buy it in case it isn’t to your taste.
Award: Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults (2012).
You can find more from Rachel Hawkins on her Tumblr & Twitter, which she updates frequently. You can also access this Goodreads profile for the Hex Hall series.
Armstrong, K. (2009). The summoning. New York: HarperCollns. ISBN:978-0061450549. Paperback. $5.35.
Annotation: Chloe has been able to see ghosts she was little, but when she is sent to Lyle House she discovers that there is more to this world than ghosts.
Are you afraid of the dark? Perhaps your basement? Chloe is. And it isn’t because she’s afraid of what isn’t there, but because she knows exactly what is. After an incedent of talking to a ghost at school, Chloe is sent to Lyle House, for other disturbed teens. It’s there she discovers that maybe she isn’t Schizophrenic like she thought and maybe she isn’t the only one with a unique set of abilities. But the nurses and supervisors at Lyle House are up to something other than taking care of the misfit teenagers, and Chloe only knows that because the ghosts in the basement told her. Can Chloe forget her past and learn to be unafraid?
I love this series. I didn’t think I would because, as I said before, ghost stories aren’t generally my thing, but I am learning to love them. This book is the first of a trilogy and overarching world series of Kelley Armstrong known as the Otherworld. I think this is a great horror/paranormal introductory because it’s a “clean” read and the characters, plot, and world are really well developed. If teens like Cassandra Clare or Melissa Marr’s books, they’ll most likely enjoy Kelley Armstrong’s and can even read her adult series when they get older. This book is rather inexpensive, but could be picked up at the library since it is a part of series, especially if you are like me and are unsure about ghost stories.
Awards & Nominations: 2008 Kirkus Review – Children — Starred Review, 2011 Young Reader’s Choice Award — Senior/Grades 10-12 (Nominee), 2008 Sunburst Award – Young Adult.
You can find Kelley Twitter and on her Author Webpage. She is extremely nice and usually gets back to you if you message her or her assistant!
Here is the official book trailer for The Summoning: