Wednesday, 8 May 2013

ARC Review: Night School (Night School #1) by C.J. Daugherty

Night School (Night School, #1)Night School

Author: C.J. Daugherty
Series: Night School
Pages: 400
Publisher: Harper Teen / Katherine Tegen Books
Pre-order Amazon: Night School
Release Date: 21st May 2013

Synopsis. (Goodreads)

Allie's world is falling apart...

She hates her school. Her brother has run away. And she's just been arrested.


Now her parents are sending her away to a boarding school where she doesn't know a soul.

But instead of hating her new school, Allie finds she's happy there. She's making friends. And then there's Sylvain, a suave French student who openly flirts with her. And Carter, the brooding loner who seems to have her back.

Soon, though, Allie discovers Cimmeria Academy is no ordinary school. Nothing there is as it seems. And her new friends are hiding dangerous secrets.

Review: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars

I was initially captured by the gorgeous cover of this book and I love a school setting so Night School was high on my wishlist.

Our main protagonist is Allie Sheridan whose parents have sent her off to a private boarding school as a last resort to set her on the straight and narrow after being in and out of trouble with a few arrests under her belt since the disappearance of her older brother, Christopher.

Allie initially wasn’t an easy character to like, she was moody and not all that friendly, her behaviour came across as inconsistent but as the story progressed so too did my opinion of this troubled teen and I came to enjoy her feisty attitude, dedication and snark.

Night School has a complex yet intriguing plot that was wonderfully developed; it revolves around conspiracies, murder and deceit - to be honest, I initially thought this was a paranormal novel judging by the cover and I was waiting for some supernatural elements but I was thankful it was very different to what I was expecting. I loved seeing how everything came together in the overall story, it was quite creative.

I enjoyed seeing Allie adapt to her new life and eventually begin to question and investigate the strange happenings around the academy as well as the hush-hush society that the students are not allowed to know about. I was sucked in by this gripping story, the overall vibe gives a sinister feel and I was more than eager to unravel the secrets of Cimmeria which were aplenty.

I liked some characters more than others; we have a love triangle with Allie, popular Sylvain (who I didn’t like nor trust) and moody Carter but it wasn’t one I found annoying because you could see Allie’s relationship with Carter came naturally and was more intense and believable. I also loved Rachel and Jo, mean girl Katie grated on my nerves.

My biggest complaint with this book was the pacing, for me at times is dragged on and on and I found myself skimming to get to the more interesting parts; the second portion of the book was much more thrilling and the pacing picked up.

Overall, Night School is a very well written story filled with mystery, romance and intrigue – I loved the academy setting and the suspense-filled plot. I still have many unanswered questions so I am looking forward to reading the sequel.

C.J. DaughertyAbout C.J Daugherty: Before giving fiction a shot, CJ had already written a number of books about travel for publishers including Frommers and Time Out, worked as a journalist for Reuters, and as a crime and investigative reporter for newspapers in the US.

Over the years she's also been a hostess at a Cajun restaurant, a researcher for a university, a receptionist for an oil company, a ham seller at a Honey Baked Ham store, and a civil servant. She quite liked selling hams.

These days she writes thrillers. Night School was her first novel. The first book in the Night School series, it is now being translated into 19 languages. Night School: Legacy, is out now in the UK and France, and will soon be published in the REST of the WORLD. 

You can hang out with her, and on Twitter, where she is @CJ_Daugherty


  1. This book has been on my TBR pile ever since it was published in the UK, so I'm more than excited to see that's being published in the US, yay! That cover is definitely a gorgeous one. I'm really glad that you ended up liking the main character more and more as the story progressed, and the mystery elements sound great. Sorry about the slow-paced parts! I'm definitely checking this one out soon, thanks for the fabulous review, Sharon!

    1. Thanks Jen, I really liked this one and hope when you read it you do as well :) thankfully the story-line kept me intrigued enough to overlook the parts that dragged on.

  2. I thought that this was a paranormal book as well, that is what I get from the cover. I'm more interested in reading this knowing that there are no supernatural elements and it's more about conspiracies. I'm sorry that the pacing ruined this a bit for you, but I'm glad to hear you will continue on with this series. I will have to add this to my list!

    1. I was quite surprised it wasn't paranormal, I kept waiting for it as I was reading along but nothing came about which was a pleasant surprise and the mystery aspect was great!

  3. I just love that cover! That's horrible about the pacing because everything else is making me want to snatch this up immediately. But it'll drive me crazy if I'm also going to want to skim, I have enough books that I feel like I need to do that with. But the mystery ..I may have to buy it anyway. ;) Wonderful review, Sharon! You have me tied in knots about the darn book though. lol

  4. I've been really curious about this book. Thank you for the informative review!


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