The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy

The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy

4.0 7
by Nikki Loftin
     
 

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Spooky twists and soaring prose make this foodie update on Hansel and Gretel an unforgettable must-read.

Lorelei is bowled over by Splendid Academy—Principal Trapp encourages the students to run in the hallways, the classrooms are stocked with candy dishes, and the cafeteria serves lavish meals featuring all Lorelei's favorite foods. But the more

Overview

Spooky twists and soaring prose make this foodie update on Hansel and Gretel an unforgettable must-read.

Lorelei is bowled over by Splendid Academy—Principal Trapp encourages the students to run in the hallways, the classrooms are stocked with candy dishes, and the cafeteria serves lavish meals featuring all Lorelei's favorite foods. But the more time she spends at school, the more suspicious she becomes. Why are her classmates growing so chubby? And why do the teachers seem so sinister?

It's up to Lorelei and her new friend Andrew to figure out what secret this supposedly splendid school is hiding. What they discover chills their bones—and might even pick them clean!

Mix one part magic, one part mystery, and just a dash of Grimm, and you've got the recipe for a cozy-creepy read that kids will gobble up like candy.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Loftin debuts with a smart, fresh, and thoroughly modern retelling of Hansel and Gretel. Nothing is going right for 11-year-old Lorelei Robinson. Her mother’s death has torn her family apart, her father has married a woman who doesn’t like kids, and her school just burned down. Good thing a shiny new school popped up over the weekend, and it’s awesome: there are all-you-can-eat meals, endless bowls of candy on the desks, a playground to die for—and students only attend classes when they want. Lorelei’s new friend Andrew is sure there’s something suspicious about the way the students can’t stop eating (his own weight issues have taught him food awareness), and Lorelei soon comes to agree. The darkness that Loftin layers over her story makes this a mesmerizing read, though some grisly details may be too much for sensitive readers. By incorporating real problems that children face—the death of a parent, peer pressure, bullying, obesity, and learning disabilities—Loftin anchors her characters and creates a fantasy that feels simultaneously classic and new. Ages 8–12. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary and Media. (Aug.)
From the Publisher
"A mesmerizing read. . . . a fantasy that feels simultaneously classic and new."—Publishers Weekly

"An irresistible contemporary fairy tale. . . . Deliciously scary and satisfying."—Kirkus

"A wickedly intriguing, deliciously eerie read." —New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith — Cynthia Leitich Smith

Kirkus Reviews
A pinch of Grimm, a dash of Greek mythology and a heaping helping of fresh chills make for an irresistible contemporary fairy tale centering around a food enchantment. A sparkling new school pops up in Lorelei's neighborhood, and events conspire to make her and her brother enroll. Not that they resist--Splendid Academy has the most phenomenal playground they've ever seen, and Principal Trapp lets the kids run in the halls. As icing on the cake, food's provided constantly, especially desserts. Everyone's desk contains a magically refilling candy bowl, and the lunches and (oddly non-optional) breakfasts are succulent feasts. Rules barely exist; teachers balk only when a student doesn't eat enough. Even at home, Lorelei awakens with "a sick, twisting hunger that felt like teeth chewing at my insides." Readers familiar with "Hansel and Gretel" will smell the reason why these teachers push food. Lorelei is smart, but two obstacles block her: knowledge that "there [i]sn't an adult in the world who would believe" the preposterous truth at the school's core, and emotional baggage from her mother's death a year ago. In clear, accessible prose with a sense of immediacy, Loftin smoothly melds Lorelei's conviction that she's "done something unforgivably evil" with the deadly danger hovering at school. Refreshingly, Lorelei's learning disability (dysgraphia) is simply a fact of life, not a literary symbol. Deliciously scary and satisfying. (Fantasy. 8-12)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101575536
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
08/21/2012
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
158,027
Lexile:
560L (what's this?)
File size:
6 MB
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

What People are saying about this

Cynthia Leitich Smith
"A wickedly intriguing, deliciously eerie read." —New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith
From the Publisher
"An irresistible contemporary fairy tale. . . . Deliciously scary and satisfying."—Kirkus

Meet the Author

Nikki Loftin is a writer and native Texan who lives just outside Austin, Texas, with her two boys, two dogs, nine chickens, and one very patient husband. The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy is her first novel.

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The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy: First Edition 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great book and once i started reading i just couldnt put it down. The main character is lorelei. Her past haunts her a she feels that she is responsible for her mothers death. She now has a new stopmom who she cant stand. When her school burns down she goes to a new school called splendid academy. But this school is like no other. The teacher encourages eating junk food. There are bowls of candy on every desk that never seem to get empty. There are two meals a day and two snacks with gourmet food that no one can ever stop eating no matter how much theyve already eaten. Lorelei and her new friend andrew are the only ones who resist the hunger. They know it wont take long for the teacher to catch on that theyre not eating. Meanwhile the seemingly kind principle reminds her of her own mother. They know something is wrong at splendid academy but the more they find out the less they want to know. This is a suspenseful, magical tale and definitely a must read.
ShannonODonnell More than 1 year ago
This is a cute story that artfully combines elements of Hansel & Gretel with dashes of Roald Dahl and Neil Gaiman's Coraline. I believe younger middle grade readers will love this story, while some of the older or more advanced readers will find it a bit less riveting. My eight-year-old daughter LOVED it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I felt as though it was to rushed in some points. Nikki has a great plot, but not enough build up. The characters didn't really give off feelings, and instead of the normal "takes time for the main character to figure out the bad guys, they do it by themselves, and it's an awesome turning point in the story", the heroine is told that the teachers are evil right off the bat. The story doesn't really have a lot of layers, or an ending that ties up the story coughlikerickriordancough. She could have done a lot of stuff to enhance the story, but she left those out. I also felt as though she should have described the locations and the stuff that happens. The characters didn't really have a lot of depth either. I really don't recommend this book; sorry, Nikki.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked this book, but I feel like it is a little boring compared to other mystery books or compared to Harry Potter!,! Which is my all-time favorite mystery novels!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sooooooooo good and sooooooooo cool
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I reas it fir a bookclub and met the author and got tk ask her ssome questions, a really good story!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago