The Magisterium #1: The Iron Trial by Holly Black and Cassandra ClareAdolescent Fantasy
A young boy with a mysterious past and a scar suddenly finds himself thrust into a magical school with two sidekicks, a boy and a girl, who soon become his best friends and help him to understand his past and withstand a prophetical future. Sound familiar? If you're thinking another Harry Potter, you're right.
There's nothing really new here...Callum Hunt is a young boy who is forced to attend a magical school to develop his latent powers. He pairs up with a boy and girl who grow into his best friends. They have adventures and find out Callum has a dangerous secret that could destroy them all. Harry Potter, much? I wish the co-authors had changed something...anything. Maybe had the protagonist be a girl instead of a boy? That's what really holds the story back for me. The entire time I kept thinking this was just a retelling, and one that wasn't as good as the original. Even the setup of the book is Potter-like right down to the font and the beginning of each chapter with a cool drawing above the beginning. That, in the end, lessened my pleasure.
And, yet, I found myself really liking the story, the characters, and the writing. The characters are intriguing, the writing is solid. Still.....I can't more than half-heartedly recommend it. From two amazing authors, it was a bit of a disappointment. I wanted more and, because of the similarities, my brain couldn't help but do the comparisons automatically.