Nothing makes me more excited, or more terrified, than when I hear that one of my favorite novels is being adapted for the screen. So I was pretty nervous about the release of SyFy’s new adaption of Lev Grossman’s The Magicians, one of my favorite series. Luckily, I’m fangirl-level obsessed with the show. It keeps the snark and fun of the original trilogy, the casting is mostly spot on, and the visuals are way better than I expected them to be (seriously, how cool does The Beast look?). It has my stamp of approval, and you should definitely be tuning in. Of course, you’re going to need something to read during commercial breaks (everyone reads during the commercials, right?). So put your TV on mute and pick up one of these YA novels that have the same fun, magical boarding school vibe as the show.
Hex Hall, by Rachel Hawkins
Sophie’s mother is human and her warlock dad isn’t around much, so there isn’t anyone to teach her how to handle her blossoming powers…which, as you can imagine, isn’t great for those around her. A love spell gone awry is the final straw for her parents, who ship her off to a magical reform school meant to straighten out all manner of trouble-making magical creatures. Sophie makes fast friends with her vampire roommate Jenna, but has less luck winning over a clique of beautiful but nasty witches out to make her life miserable. As if things weren’t hard enough, students are being attacked and everyone seems willing to pin the blame on Jenna. Determined to clear the name of her best (and only) friend, she sets out to find the real culprit and stumbles upon a secret that could put all of their lives in danger.
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Blue Bloods, by Melissa de la Cruz
Schuyler Van Alen isn’t exactly popular at her prestigious Manhattan prep school, but it isn’t until she turns 15 that she realizes just how different from her classmates she is. Schuyler’s fellow students are Blue Bloods, angels who rebelled against God alongside Lucifer and were cursed to live on earth as vampires. Schuyler is half Blue Blood and half human, the daughter of the archangel Gabrielle, and isn’t on the best of terms with the archangel Michael and the rest of his powerful vampire family. But when young Blue Bloods begin showing up drained of their blood, a fate worse than death for their kind, the Blue Bloods begin to suspect Lucifer and his army of Silver Bloods may be on the loose again. Whether they like it or not, Schuyler may be the key to destroying Lucifer once and for all.
Thief of Lies, by Brenda Drake
Ever wish you could travel to any of the great libraries of the world simply by opening a book? After Gia Kearns spots a gorgeous boy in the Boston Athenaeum, she sees him disappear before her eyes. While examining the book he was reading, she accidentally gets herself and her friends sucked into the pages and ends up in a Parisian library. Turns out, the boy is a magical knight sworn to protect humans from deadly creatures who can travel through the pages of books. Traveling via book sounds great, but dealing with book monsters definitely puts a damper on things. Of course, the upside is getting to spend time with the very sexy Arik…
Carry On, by Rainbow Rowell
Fans of Rowell’s novel Fangirl will recognize Simon Snow as the Harry Potter–like object of protagonist Cath’s obsession. In Carry On, Simon leaves the confinement of Cath’s fanfiction and gets his own full-length adventure. Unfortunately, things aren’t going well for Simon. He’s in his last year at Watford School of Magicks, he’s kind of broken up with his girlfriend, and his vampire rival Baz is being as annoying (and strangely alluring) as usual. Oh, and something evil is threatening to destroy his magical world. As Simon and his friends race to save the day, we get more of the fun, magic, and awesome sexual tension of his story in Fangirl. Simon and Baz shippers unite!
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs
Another series that’ll soon be coming to a screen near you, Miss Peregrine’s is about 16-year-old Jacob, whose life begins to spiral out of control after he sees a terrifying creature attack and kill his grandfather. The problem is, no one seems to believe him. Determined to prove that he’s not crazy and find out more about his mysterious grandfather, Jacob travels to Wales to find the orphanage that his grandfather grew up in. Instead, he finds a school full of ageless children with “peculiar” powers, like the ability to fly or create fire on a whim. As Jacob begins to uncover his grandfather’s secrets, he begins to realize that his own peculiar powers will either save all of his new-found friends…or get him killed by the same enemies that attacked his grandfather.