“Stephen Alter has what it takes to become a children’s classic, imbued with the type of stories found in other great children’s literature like the Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling, or the books of Roald Dahl …”
Kip is sent away to a boarding school in the mountains following a family crisis. Lost and alone, he feels abandoned in the strange, unwelcoming halls and classrooms of Paramount Academy, where nothing seems to have changed for the last hundred years. The curriculum is completely different from what Kip studied at his old school with puzzling subjects like “Toxicology.” Though the principal, Captain Lovelock, and his staff insist on “truth” and “excellence,” the students are treated like prisoners and must obey unjust rules and harsh discipline. On his first day at school, Kip makes friends with a boy named Scruggs and two girls, Juniper and Meghna. Quickly, he learns that they are different from the other students.