Synopsis (from the Waterstones WebsiteSometimes school can be murder...Allie Sheridan's world is falling apart. She hates her school. Her brother has run away from home. And she's just been arrested. Again. This time her parents have finally had enough. They cut her off from her friends and send her away to a boarding school for problem teenagers. But Cimmeria Academy is no ordinary school. It allows no computers or phones. Its students are an odd mixture of the gifted, the tough and the privileged. And then there's the secretive Night School, whose activities other students are forbidden even to watch. When Allie is attacked one night the incident sets off a chain of events leading to the violent death of a girl at the summer ball. As the school begins to seem like a very dangerous place, Allie must learn who she can trust. And what's really going on at Cimmeria Academy.
What I have to SayI loved this book so much! I wasn't sure what to make of it at first but it's just so well written. Allie is a really strong character and the plot is intriguing and gripping in all the right ways!
What I think I really liked though was the way that friendships were shown. In fact all the relationships were so real. A lot of books show people being the absolute best of friends where nothing can ever go wrong, but this shows the bitchiness that people can have. Especially with girls and especially at a boarding school.
In some books, it's fine. Especially if the book needs a really close group of friends, but in others, and especially in this one, the fluctuating friendships really add something to the plotline.
The other thing I think that really made this books something special was how well the mystery element was done. It was constantly hovering on the line between mysterious and frustrating, enough to keep people guessing, but not too much that they give up reading it. Also it means that you can really emphasis with Allie about being left in the dark all the time, because you're in the same position.
Oh and the tea. There was a lot of tea in this book. But in a good way. It made it feel real and wasn't too intrusive. And it was very British :P It really caught the attitude that a lot of us have about being able to solve everything with a cup of tea. When something bad happens, you go and get tea, when something good happens, you go and get tea, doing homework? Why not have tea to go with it. I know that feeling well :)
So I really highly recommend this book! If you like dark, mysteries set at British boarding schools then this is something that you just have to read.