Review | Deadly Education – Naomi Novik

I’ve had this review ready for awhile now haha but today it’s finally the day that I share I with you all. Naomi Novik wrote one of my favorite books; Uprooted so I was already excited to pick this one up. The premise was also right up my alley. But did it live up to my expectations? Read on to find out!

Review | Deadly Education – Naomi Novik

Lesson One of the Scholomance: Learning has never been this deadly.
A Deadly Education is set at Scholomance, a school for the magically gifted where failure means certain death (for real) — until one girl, El, begins to unlock its many secrets.
There are no teachers, no holidays, and no friendships, save strategic ones. Survival is more important than any letter grade, for the school won’t allow its students to leave until they graduate… or die! The rules are deceptively simple: Don’t walk the halls alone. And beware of the monsters who lurk everywhere.
El is uniquely prepared for the school’s dangers. She may be without allies, but she possesses a dark power strong enough to level mountains and wipe out millions. It would be easy enough for El to defeat the monsters that prowl the school. The problem? Her powerful dark magic might also kill all the other students.

A Deadly Education (The Scholomance, #1) by Naomi Novik
Published by Del Rey Books on 29/09/2020
Pages: 336

When this book was released a lot was said about some problematic sentences. It had to do with dreadlocks and the insinuation that that is an unclean hairstyle. And while the author didn’t intend it that way, it was still hurtful and it should’ve never been in the book. Naomi wrote an apology and as far as apologies go, I think she did a good job. The sentence got altered for future prints of the book and she promised to be better. There was some other representation people got upset about. I am a white girl giving my opinion about this book but I also think it’s important to see these possible issues from own voices reviewers. A Naga of the Nusantara wrote a wonderful review and I urge you to check it out!


I really like this cover! The dark background sets the tone for the story and it fits really well. I also love the illustrations on it, they intrigue me and this is definitely the cover of a book I want to pick up.

My anger’s a bad guest, my mother likes to say: comes without warning and stays a long time.


I was really excited to pick up A Deadly Education. A school where you might die at any moment and you’re not allowed to leave until graduation. I didn’t really know anything more than that before I went into it and I didn’t need anything else either. It sounded like it got dark academia vibes and I’m all for that.

You have to ration sympathy and grief in here the way you ration school supplies.

I love magical schools in my books but this is one school I’m happy I never had to attend haha. Kids with magical abilities go here because they will be attacked outside of school by maleficaria, nightmarish creatures that take all kinds of shapes. There is actually a lot of world building in this book and I’ve seen it as one of the things people didn’t like about it. I never felt like there was an info dump at all. Whenever we needed to know more, the author gave us the information. Maybe it’s because I thought it was super interesting, but I loved learning more about the school and the world. I’m sure there is a ton more to learn and I can’t wait to do so in the sequel.

I decided that Orion needed to die after the second time he saved my life.

Galadriel, or El as she prefers, is our main character and I adored her.  She tries to survive in this killing environment where allies are super important for that survival. And she wants to do it without compromising who she is. I have a lot of respect for her! She wasn’t super likeable all the time but that made me like her all the more. And I enjoyed seeing her develop relationships with other students. Another important character is Orion. He was so cute! I loved his protectiveness towards basically everyone. And it was wonderful getting to know the boy behind the ‘hero’.

The plot in this first book is basically about El surviving this school year. And while that might sound like not much of a plot, I was super invested and loved it a lot. It was high stakes because definitely not everyone makes it to the end of the book. With the world building, character development and plot there was a lot going on in this story. And it wasn’t even that big of a book. We left the character with a big cliffhanger and I think I actually yelped out loud when I realised that was the ending haha. I can’t wait for the sequel and I hate that I have to wait so long haha.

You feel like it’s going to rain.

I’m so glad I picked this one up! I loved it a lot and can’t wait for the sequel. The Last Graduate will be released in September so a little over 2 months to wait. Hopefully it will be just as good!

2 thoughts on “Review | Deadly Education – Naomi Novik

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge