The Morning Blend


The School of Good and Evil

Posted at 9:26 AM, Mar 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-11 09:26:59-04

Forget what you think you know about fairy tales and step into The School for Good and Evil—where things are not always what they seem. In Soman Chainani’s New York Times bestselling series, two best friends will find that the only way out of a fairy tale is to live through it.

Soman Chainani practically created his own fairy-tale major when studying at Harvard. Growing up, Soman felt outside of the "mainstream" -- one of the only kids of color at school; wrestling with being gay; a skinny, sensitive kid who didn't fit in with boys. He loved fairy tales, Harry Potter, and Disney most of all -- but didn't see any parts of him reflected. The School for Good and Evil is the corrective; it’s a series for all kids who feel the same way Soman did -- and now lets them be the heroes of a big, inclusive world. It's why the fandom for the series is so big and passionate: everything from SGE weddings to tattoos to fanart. SGE spotlights the forgotten kids.

Soman tutored kids for 10 years in New York City and realized that for every 'good', kid, there was one struggling or left behind. The 'bad' kids. Soman realized these are the kids left out of fantasy storytelling -- the kids who never get to be heroes. So the SGE characters -- "Good" and "Evil" -- were inspired by the hugely diverse students Soman taught.

The book series shows us how to talk with kids about evil. Kids grow up with the same narrative again and again: Good always wins. It's what every superhero movie teaches -- Evil can't stand a chance against truth and justice. And yet, in the real world, Evil wins all the time. The School for Good and Evil is a series that isn't afraid to talk to kids about Evil and what it means -- and why "villains" often have their own stories that deserve to be told. For the first time, kids aren't spoonfed who to root for. And in the process, they learn that Good and Evil not only have blurred lines -- but they can also look exactly the same.