Paranormal Picks: Back to School Edition

August 23, 2013 Paranormal Picks 2

In honor of it being August, and kids going back to school, we thought we’d do a quick round up of some paranormal and urban fantasy school themed favorites. Though as we say below, Rose and Dmitri from Vampire Academy did mostly inspire this post, once we got the wheels turning we realized there were lots of options for us to chose from. Was there a category we should have included? Do you agree with all of our choices for the categories below? Are you excited about going back to school? 😉


Best Forbidden Teacher/Student Romance – Rose and Dmitri

Two words: Lust spell.  Rose and Dmitri pretty much inspired this entire post and could be listed underneath every category below, since we thought that might be unfair to the other books, we’re giving this formidable dhampir (half vampire/half human vampire bodyguard) and her stoic and seriously swoon worthy dhampir trainer the top spot.  The age difference, the roles they’ve chosen, the rules of St. Vladimir’s Academy, all of it conspires to keep these two apart, none more powerfully devastating than the tragedy at the end of SHADOW KISS.   But nothing, not love triangles, or assassins, or Rose and Dmitri themselves are stronger than the love that unites them.  Their romance is the opposite of insta-love.  From respect to friendship to combustible desire to a love that rivals any of the best that YA has ever offered: Rose and Dmitri are immortal. This is a series you’ll want to devour before the film adaptation releases in January: Vampire Academy movie trailer

Spirit Bound Vampire Academy

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Runner Up Best Forbidden Teacher/Student Romance – Amelie and Jackson

In the first book in the Angel Academy series, PROPHECY GIRL, Jackson is Amelie’s trainer. Also, Jackson has been warned about Amelie and her propensity for not following the rules-he seems to dislike her from the start! But that doesn’t stop the literal sparks from flying whenever they do magic together and the fact that they keep finding themselves in some tight situations probably doesn’t help. With Amelie’s sarcasm and risk-taking, and Jackson’s hate to love you vibe, they’ve got the right amount of tension and are a ton of fun to read about.

Prophecy Girl

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Most Creative School Setting – St. Lucifer’s

In DARK LIGHT OF DAY, Noon starts her studies at St. Lucifier’s, the law school in the post-apocalyptic world where Satan won. The school has two parts- the part for the normal lawyers, and the part for the Maegestars, those who possess magic. They do share most classes though, and any law student would sympathize with Noon’s continual studying of cases and precedents. In both the books of the series thus far, we follow Noon as she works a case with a partner, and see all the hazards of representing demons. Of which there are many. Our modern day law school seems like a breeze in comparison.

Fiery Edge of Steel

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Runner Up Most Creative School Setting – Reaper School

In SCYTHE DOES MATTER, the second in the Reluctant Reaper series, our heroine Kristy finds herself in hell’s Reaper School, to become a reaper herself. In Reaper School, they learn about all different world religions, where souls go when they die, and how basically, reapers are pretty much hell’s bounty hunters, getting souls that don’t want to leave the world quite yet. Add that to the field portion of the course, which has a very boot camp like feel, and we’ve got a school that I don’t think I would graduate from!

Scythe Does Matter

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Perpetual Student – Claire Danvers

No one should ever accept a scholarship to Texas Prairie University in Morganville.  Sure it’s fine during the day, but once the sun sets, the vampire run town takes a deadly turn for the average co-ed. Claire Danvers, sixteen year old prodigy (when the series starts) is used to lugging around textbooks and stakes, making sure her vampire roommate doesn’t lose control and eat her, and keeping her brilliant but psychotic mentor from vivisecting her.  Oh and finals.  Can’t forget to study for those.

fall of night

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Runner Up Perpetual Student  – Gin

As part of her cover as our favorite assassin, the Spider, Gin is a self professed perpetual student at Ashland Community College. She takes any classes that sound interesting, but her favorite are literature and cooking, which makes sense, since she can generally be found reading behind the register at the Pork Pit during downtimes. In VENOM, the third book in the Elemental Assassin series, she’s even ambushed on campus on her way home from taking a final in a classical literature class. Now, how many students have to contend with that?

Deadly Sting (Elemental Assassin #8)

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Best Boarding School – Finishing School

Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality is less about producing well behaved young ladies as it is concerned with how quickly they can dispatch a man using only a kerchief.  Let me count off why it’s so cool.  It’s a dirigible, as in an airship, the professors include vampires and werewolves, and there are almost more patrolling automatons than students.  Take into consideration the constant threat of sky pirates and plotting classmates and this is the closest thing to Hogwarts since Harry Potter.

etiquette and espionage

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Runner Up Best Boarding School – Mythos Academy

Where is the average son or daughter of Spartans, Valkyries, and Amazons supposed to learn how to use magic and become a warrior who fights evil?  Mythos Academy, of course.  Sure the pantheon statues in the library sometimes come to life and charge you with saving the world.  So maybe your possessed sword named Vic has a nearly insatiable thirst for blood.   And does it really matter if mythological creatures swam the campus occasionally and eat a few students?   It’s all part of the charm of Mythos Academy.


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Bonus – Best Teacher Turned Badass – Beatrice Alexander

For a brief moment at the beginning of the first book, MIND OVER MONSTERS, in the F.R.E.A.K.S. Squad Investigation series, we see Beatrice’s teacher side as she uses her special psychokinetic skills to save one of her students from getting hit by a car. It sounds like she kept a pretty tight lid on her skills – but she does mention a time when she made a bookshelf hover after getting angry during a parent teacher conference. Though we never get to see her in the classroom, it is worth mentioning a heroine who was only a regular teacher before the series started.

Death Takes a Holiday

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