Series: Pennyroyal Academy #2
Published by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers on June 14th 2016
Number of Pages: 359
Genres: Fantasy, Middle Grade
Purchase: At Amazon
When Princess Cadet Evie returns to Pennyroyal Academy, she’s suddenly become famous. Word has traveled far and wide of her defeating the witches and has inspired a wave of new recruits to the Academy. Though flattering, the unexpected attention is overwhelming for Evie, and amidst the piles and piles of fan mail, she finds a letter with an ominous threat. A secret society has come out of the shadows with a wicked plan, putting the Academy in great peril. This new enemy has powers impervious to the princess’s magic—posing a new risk to Evie and her friends. The danger looms even larger when Evie discovers someone close to the Academy may not be who they seem. It’s up to Evie and her friends to uncover the devious plot and save their once venerable Academy before it’s too late.
The first book concentrated a lot on what was happening inside the Academy. On the lessons, friendships, intrigue and day-to-day. This one had a little of the school day stuff, but mostly skimmed over that to focus on the friendships, things that happened before school started, and the mysteries Evie was trying to solve.
For a lot of the book, the four friends were separate from each other a lot. Not in physical distance, but emotional. From hiding away, to finding other friends to hang out with, it didn’t have the closeness of the previous book. They do eventually work their issues, but it seemed to take an awfully long time to happen.
I loved the reveal on the major fairytale character we get to meet. (I won’t say whom or when!) But it worked really well, and I liked how it all unfolded. I didn’t like the way Evie treated her family, even if she did end up realizing and regretting it later on. It does make sense for her age and character, but it always seems like the dragons get the short end of the stick in this series.
I really do love the magic in this series. Parchment letters that turn into hawks to deliver themselves, fire-breathing, being able to make a shield by not letting your fear control you and having courage.
I also love that one of the Princesses in training is actually a boy. Basil is still one of my favorite characters, and he stayed true to himself while growing as a character too.