An entrancing new series starring a funny, impulsive, and sometimes self-congratulatory young woman who discovers she has psychic abilities—and then must decide whether she will use her skills for good or…not.
Teddy Cannon isn’t your typical twenty-something woman. She’s resourceful. She’s bright. She’s scrappy. She can also read people with uncanny precision. What she doesn’t realize: she’s actually psychic.
When a series of bad decisions leads Teddy to a run-in with the police, a mysterious stranger intervenes. He invites her to apply to the School for Psychics, a facility hidden off the coast of San Francisco where students are trained like Delta Force operatives: it’s competitive, cutthroat, and highly secretive. They’ll learn telepathy, telekinesis, investigative skills, and SWAT tactics. And if students survive their training, they go on to serve at the highest levels of government, using their skills to protect America, and the world.
In class, Teddy befriends Lucas, a rebel without a cause who can start and manipulate fire; Jillian, a hipster who can mediate communication between animals and humans; and Molly, a hacker who can apprehend the emotional state of another individual. But just as Teddy feels like she’s found where she might belong, strange things begin to happen: break-ins, missing students, and more. It leads Teddy to accept a dangerous mission that will ultimately cause her to question everything—her teachers, her friends, her family, and even herself.
Set in a world very much like our own, School for Psychics is the first book in a stay-up-all night series.-Goodreads Synopsis
Author: K.C. Archer
My Rating: 3.5/5
My Favourite Quote: “Did you know carrier pigeons were the original text message?”
I was initially really intrigued by the premise of this book. I mean a book about psychics with ties to the American government sounds really interesting and fun. The fact that it is spinning off of a real historical attempt on the part of the government to use psychic abilities during the Cold War and extends the idea into a world where this was actually possible, sounds great.
Overall, I thought the concept for this book was great. There were many elements that I thought were incredibly interesting. To name a few, the idea of genetic markers for psychic abilities is briefly mentioned. Eventually, the book gets more into the building of psychic powers and there is apparently a theoretical concept that one can facilitate mind reading by using the mind palace technique (a real life mnemonic device), and I thought this was a really unique way of visualising a psychic power.
In my opinion this book had a very strong start and was initially very attention grabbing. Unfortunately, as the book continues the pacing becomes a bit odd, and strangely slow in some areas. Though, sprinkled in-between some of these slower areas are very well written and engaging action scenes.
Despite the strong concept and start I did have a few issues with this book. I think the main issue I had was the writing of the supporting set of characters. I really loved the idea of some of the characters, for example, Teddy’s roommate’s power is that she can talk to animals! But, this idea is never explored much and neither is their relationship. I loved the idea for many of the characters but their relationships to Teddy seemed a bit too surface level. This is would be fine if they were not important characters but it makes things quite hard when we are meant to care about these characters and understand their motivations.
I also found myself pausing a few times to consider some odd clichés in this book. A main source of tension in the school is the split of the psychics into groups of the Alphas and Misfits, which sure would be maybe a bit more excusable if these were teenagers. But, these are mostly graduate school level adults, literally calling themselves “Alphas” and “Misfits” which I thought was really strange.
This issue of maturity seems pretty consistent across the book, and there are two relationships that seem to develop after what I honestly believe to be two sentences. They are interesting enough, but I just found the initiation of these relationships to be jarring.
In brief, this is a book with a really interesting premise and if you can get past some of the issues with pacing and characterization it could be a fun summer read! This book is the first in a series and I personally don’t think I’ll continue on with it, but as a standalone I thought it was a pretty fun!
Please let me know your thoughts. If you loved this book or had some of the same problems as I did, I’d love to hear them!