Review: The Exceptionals by Erin Cashman

Written By: Kellie - Oct• 03•12

the exceptionals

Publisher: Holiday House Inc.
Publish Date: February 1st, 2012
Source: ARC

Rating: 3/5 Hawks

Synopsis: Born into a famous family of exceptionally talented people, 15-year-old Claire Walker has deliberately chosen to live an average life. But everything changes the night of the Spring Fling, when her parents decide it’s high time she transferred to Cambial Academy–the prestigious boarding school that her great-grandfather founded for students with supernatural abilities. -Goodreads

Review: The Exceptionals is the story of Claire Walker, a talented girl born into a talented family. While the idea of a child with a special talent going to a school to develop that talent might seem overdone, The Exceptionals offers quite a few new elements, as well as fun writing to keep things interesting. For me, the best part was Claire’s ability, talking to animals, which is something I’m sure I imagined fairly often while I was growing up.

The supernatural school, Cambial Academy, isn’t what I was expecting at all. The entire school dynamic is different from most YA based book schools, magical or otherwise. While there is still plenty of competition and relationship drama, it’s less cliquey and seems more like the idealized version of the school many of us wish we had attended. What made it really interesting from Claire’s perspective is that her family had played a part in running the school for a couple of generations now and everyone she knows is massively involved in the running of the school and all the politics that come with it.

This is a great example of YA book that shows young reader that it’s okay to stand out and do something daring or unexpected. Claire’s journey from average girl (albeit with a secret ability) to something more can easily represent that of less magically inclined individuals. Claire has a lot of growing up to do but she’s a lot of fun to read about as she makes that transition.

There are a few cheesier moments with Claire’s animal companions but if you’re in the mood for it, they will have you wishing you could make some bird buddies as well. Overall, I would recommend The Exceptionals to younger YA readers or older readers who are in the mood for something light.

Buy The Exceptionals
@Amazon (US) @Amazon (CAN) @The Book Depository

Second Opinions:
@RJ Does Books
@Once Upon A Twilight
@Novel Society

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One Comment

  1. Kate- Midnight Book Girl says:

    lol, I totally misread the school name, I thought it read Cannibal Academy! Of course, if that was the name of the school then I’d probably be all over this book. ;)

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