Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.
Simon Snow is a strangely unpredictable chosen one, with all the braveness and trustworthiness of your stereotypical hero coupled with the bumbling insecurities of a teenager. Simon has an intense relationship and rivalry with his roommate Baz, a vampire who has aligned himself against Simon in the inevitable magical war about to break out. This relationship is the focus for a large portion of the novel and is, I’ll admit, adorable. Baz is hopelessly infatuated with Simon but being a vampire and on the wrong side of the war has its disadvantages.
Yet, even amidst sweet stolen kisses their relationship seems very superficial, as did most of the characters. The multiple points of view and intricate relationships between characters, while they do manage to advance the plot, are still completely predictable and therefore almost seem like a waste of time. The first half of the novel is fairly slow as you’re being introduced to an intricate magical world, which has a startling familiarity to Hogwarts. However, after the appearance of Simon’s roommate, Baz the novel does speed up.
I hold an unpopular opinion about this novel because I honestly do not see the allure. I feel like the novel had a lot of potential but that it is wasted because the author tried to do too much with what is essentially a romance novel. I enjoyed the novel, it was a fun light read but I probably would not recommend it with high praise.