The highly-anticipated second installment in the award-winning Alex McKenna Series!
After surviving a harrowing case, Alex McKenna just wanted to rest. Unfortunately, his plans are interrupted by the ghost of Seven-year-old Haven, who is lost in an in-between realm.
Despite his great-grandmother's warning, Alex crosses the bridge between the living and the dead, sending him and his girlfriend into the world of the Academy of Souls, a high school for dead teens who are unable to complete their journey.
There, Alex meets Ophelia, Haven's teenage sister, who's been searching for her for more than a century. Together, with a few friends he meets along the way, Alex must cross the treacherous terrain of the Underworld in-between, to save Haven from the clutches of the Soul Gatherer and reunite the sisters.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Solid Follow Up/Perfect for the Season
I was excited to read this one because I loved the first one and was hoping for a similar experience. I wasn't disappointed. And, for me, this one was a little more exciting compared to the first because of where the book takes place. But I'll get to that in a sec.
First off, I want to comment on the consistency between the novels. Whenever I read a series, it's because I've fallen for the characters and cannot wait to get back into their lives/world. Being in Alex's world again was comforting. Margaret's back and as sassy as ever, and I love how these two work together. It's a YA cloud of yumminess. They click and it just makes sense. I love Alex' vulnerability and innocence, and M's strength & attitude. Alex has a good head on his shoulders. His integrity (the way he treats the people he loves) makes me like him even more.
So the story in general goes like this.... Alex crosses paths with a lost soul in his world. Being who he is, he can't let it go. He travels across dimensions (with Margaret!) to the Academy of Souls, and of course, has to deal with an evil entity that is threatening the existence of the lost souls there.
Overall, this book has consistent characters/world that welcome you back, interesting story/conflict, amazing setting, funny moments, suspenseful moments, heart-warming and squishy teen love, and the obligatory evil-entity butt kicking.
Okay, *now* back to the setting. This is basically why I liked this book more than the first. It takes place at an afterlife academy...which I find to be a totally cool trope. There are so many other books I've read that also do this, but it feels borderline cliche. Not the Academy of Souls. I found it to be a dynamic place for Alex (and Margaret) to do their thing. And the lost soul students...terrific supporting characters. I could definitely see an entire series happening here.
*The Parliament House Press provided an ARC of this novel.