Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy (review)

3.5/5 stars

The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy (Goodreads | Amazon) was much more lighthearted and fun that I expected.  From the time I obtained this book to the time I read it, obviously I'd forgotten the blurb (Disclosure: That is somewhat intentional. I like having a blank slate when I read a book).  I'm not sure if it was the words "Vigilante Poets" or the name of the school "Selwyn Academy" that made me expect something more pretentious, but this book wasn't at all despite being about high school artists (who let's be honest are prone to being pretentious).

What I got instead was a fun, snarky book that I tore through quickly.  Ethan reads a little younger than he is, but it feels intentional like he's immature and uses that as a coping mechanism.  He's not a stereotypical arts school kid, he considers himself medicore, thinks about girls and just isn't the artsy-fartsy type.  You get a good mix of characters in this book, from ones who seem like arts school stereotypes (even if they're more complex than that) to ones who you wouldn't think are artists at first glance.

The book follows an arts school reality show "For Arts Sake" and the students who try to subvert it, both for selfish purposes (crushes) and because of more artistic intentions.  It's a romping story with a bit of a mystery, a bit of romances and just a lot of silly fun.  It talks about art in a way that doesn't make you roll your eyes. This is a book that pokes fun at itself and doesn't mind being the butt of it's own jokes, which makes it a nice fun read.

I received an advance reading copy in exchange for an honest review. 

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