Tuesday, September 8, 2015

#REVIEW: Sword of Deaths by Christopher Mannino

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Swordof Deaths
Susan Sarnio made a choice, and will spend the rest of her life as the only female Death. Last year she was bullied and ostracized. Now, to her complete bewilderment, four Deaths vie for her affection. Yet, something is terribly wrong at the College of Deaths. When a ship carrying scythe metal is attacked, many blame the newly-freed Elementals, but Susan knows the Elementals are innocent. Shadows from the distant past come to light. Dragons circle the horizon, blood spills, and nothing is what it seems. Susan and her friends struggle to stop a war. They search for the fabled First Scythe, hoping to sway the balance, but who is the true enemy?    

My rating: 3 1/2 stars

REVIEW: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
From the very beginning of the series, I thought this was very Harry Potter-esque. The details are obviously changed, but the thread remains, even to a sport the students play, and the other race, the Elementals, that help around the school, and the Scooby gang. You definitely need to read the first book before reading this one, as they are very dependent on the story line from the first.The change between books, from Suzie's point of view only to each of the teens' points of view was interesting. It helped to add a little more to the storyline, especially from the Elemental point of view.
I found the story line seemed to drag in places. The characters were interesting enough, well-written for teenagers with enough hormonal angst to drive the plot along when it dragged. As the only female in a world of males, I could understand Suzie's need to prove herself, and it underlined the tensions we find in our own world when we have people that are different than the norm.
Overall, the book was okay, but it was too easy to put it down and come back to eventually. It didn;t grab me for some reason.
SchoolofDeaths Book 1 is Available On: Amazon | MuseIt (eBook) (Paperback) | B&N
Book A Million | ChristopherMannino.com
Thrust into a world of men, can a timid girl find bravery as the first female Death? Thirteen-year-old Suzie Sarnio always believed the Grim Reaper was a fairy tale image of a skeleton with a scythe. Now, forced to enter the College of Deaths, she finds herself training to bring souls from the Living World to the Hereafter. The task is demanding enough, but as the only female in the all-male College, she quickly becomes a target. Attacked by both classmates and strangers, Suzie is alone in a world where even her teachers want her to fail. Scythes hungry for souls, Deaths who enslave a race of mysterious magicians, and echoes of an ancient war with Dragons. As her year progresses, Suzie suspects her presence isn't an accident. She uncovers a plot to overthrow the World of Deaths. Now she must also discover the reason she's been brought there: the first female Death in a million years.

CM - authorwithscytheChristopher Mannino’s life is best described as an unending creative outlet. He teaches high school theatre in Greenbelt, Maryland. In addition to his daily drama classes, he runs several after-school performance/production drama groups. He spends his summers writing and singing. Mannino holds a Master of Arts in Theatre Education from Catholic University, and has studied mythology and literature both in America and at Oxford University. His work with young people helped inspire him to write young adult fantasy, although it was his love of reading that truly brought his writing to life.  
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