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The Academy

3.59  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,233 Ratings  ·  92 Reviews
Here's one good reason for staying home from school... Something strange is happening at Tyler High. The laid-back principal has become unusually strict. The janitors no longer work nights because of what they hear. The students are frightened by what they see. And things are happening on school grounds that defy rational explanation. But there is an explanation. It's just ...more
ebook, 400 pages
Published August 5th 2008 by Signet Book (first published January 1st 2008)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,122)
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William Dalphin
Sep 26, 2013 William Dalphin rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Are you afraid of the principal's office? Do you have nightmares about your mother posing nude in art class? Does the thought of spanking your phys ed teacher's bare ass send chills down your spine? Are you frozen in terror by the word "feces"? Then maybe The Academy by Bentley Little will scare you. Maybe.

I bought the Academy to read after liking Little's previous work, The Burning. Unfortunately, The Academy is like it was written by a completely different author; an inept, confused, strugglin
May 05, 2013 Lisa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Bad. Really bad. I finished it just out of curiosity. Example sentence: "Even as creepy as she seemed these days, Jody would not have defecated in a book." AHAHAHAA! So, at least I got a laugh out of it.
Stuart Nachbar
A Charter School Horror Story

I am not a huge fan of the horror genre, but as an education writer I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to read a horror story set in a charter school. That has to be a high-water mark for the charter school movement, to become a subject front and center in a mass-market chiller. The Academy, written by Bentley Little, is about a California high school, the fictional John Tyler High, that elects to go charter to get out of from under the grasp of a fundamentalist scho
I am not sure where this book was aimed. I guess Mr. Little either hates, is scared of or does not understand charter schools. Maybe he is on a school board somewhere and is upset because a charter school cut him out of the decision making process. In any case, this book makes the charter system the horror villain with a school that has gone terribly wrong. The principal is possessed by the ghost of a previous school system leader. I think that is what the thing was about. Any way it was a quick ...more
Michael Mallory
Bentley Little is an author who has a definite style and format, bordering on formula, and "The Academy" definitely falls into it. The Little "shtick" is to create an entity--in this case a public high school that decides to become a charter school, and ends up being the charter school from hell--and then track how the people who have to deal with the entity become engulfed in its evil. Little builds the tension slowly and effectively, following a teacher at the school and a trio of students who ...more
Dec 12, 2008 Anderson rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Nick Anderson

Mrs. Baltz

Pre-AP English 10

December 11, 2008

The Academy By: Bentley Little

John Tyler High School closed down last year. A lot of teachers were worried about what they were going to do for jobs. Luckily Linda Webster one of the English teachers received a letter from the Principal Jody Hawkes saying that the district was going to have a meeting about the future of Tyler High School. The meeting was about Tyler High becoming a charter school. They would be free to teach the way the
Apr 06, 2012 Erin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was a huge fan of the horror novel in the 80's, particularly during the Ruby Jean Jensen and William Johnstone years, but haven't really been reading many since then. According to other reviewers, this book is not up to Bentley Little's usual standards...well, I can at least agree that although this was a good premise, this wasn't a great book. It was far too littered with left wing politics (although that can certainly be a horror story in and of itself ;), but also, it just didn't flow. Ther ...more
Lake Lopez
Nov 25, 2015 Lake Lopez rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Mr. Little - Somehow, this draft left your office and made it into print. Thought you should know.
11811 (Eleven)
Apr 07, 2011 11811 (Eleven) rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This kinda sucked. It's only my second Bentley novel. I thought The Store was decent but this one was like a carbon copy. First, Walmart is evil. Now, charter schools are evil. Is the author always like this? I like my horror to be agenda-free. If a political statement is to be made, for the love of God, at least keep it subtle. There was nothing subtle here.

I rest my case with a quote from one of the main characters - "The only question is, is this a charter school because it's evil, or is it e
Jul 05, 2016 Plum-crazy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2016
This seemed to be off to a good start, no messing just straight into the spookiness from page one. Tyler High is becoming a charter school & that's bringing with it some very odd goings on. The menacing atmosphere begins to build beautifully, nothing gory or too shocking - strange lights at night, birds deliberately flying into the backboards on a basketball court (oh, & killing themselves!) - but sadly this tension isn't maintained & it all went downhill pretty rapidly.

Once the cree
Eric Carcano
Oct 10, 2015 Eric Carcano rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a tale of mass possession, inducing an entire community into bizarre acts of violence and perversion. Possession by WHAT remains an open quection, as it should always be in this genre. How sexually depraved can matters become among the students, teachers and parents at your local suburban high school you ask? Well, the author invites us into his fetid imagination for a good long stretch!

Cheerleadering practise will never be the same again. The demure young ladies of Tyler High are puttin
Jun 11, 2010 Lori rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010june
OK, I brought this as a trashy beach read. And ignoring the fact that it's too cold and wet for the beach, I should've been able to enjoy some pulp fiction, right?

The Academy was AWFUL. The plot made no sense. The characters were stupid. It wasn't at all scary. And the sex and violence were gross because they involved high-schoolers.

All of which might've been OK if the book had been in any way fun, which it wasn't.

We'll see if I can bring myself to try the other Little I brought on the trip.
Sep 15, 2008 Tressa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: horror fans
Shelves: horror
OK. I'll admit that I've been a Bentley Little fan for years. I love how he shocks me with innappropriate action that occurs in an innocent setting, e.g. a mega-store; a postal route; a luxury resort. But his shtick is getting a little too formulaic for my tastes.

This book reminded me of so many of his others: The University; The Store; The Policy.

His The Ignored and The Postman stray a little from the formula and were enjoyable.

Keep writing, Bentley, but shake it up a little!
Katie Kenig
Jun 08, 2015 Katie Kenig rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
So. Creepy.

This book is about a creepy, scary, icky school that you don't want to go to. No, really. You don't want to teach there, either.

Tyler seems like an ordinary school, until just before the new year, when everyone gets the news that it is becoming a Charter school. This is supposed to mean freedom from the crazy, conservative local school district, more autonomy in lessons for the teachers, maybe even a better budget for things like books and supplies.

And, at first, everything seems gre
May 24, 2016 Elena rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: meh, terror
2,5 estrellas. Es una pena, un buen argumento, desarrollado gradualmente, con varios puntos de vista por parte de diferentes personajes... Hasta llegar más o menos a la mitad, todo va muy bien. Y se mantiene el suspense, no diré terror, pero sí una cierta inquietud. De pronto, todo empieza a chirriar. Es posible que sea culpa mía, que no haga falta apenas nada para que deje de creerme una historia, lo admito. Pero empiezas preguntándote "¿cómo ha dicho? ¿He leído bien?", para terminar pensando q ...more
 Eden Creed
Oct 23, 2014 Eden Creed rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the most bizarre and unrealistic books I have ever read. And while that could be a great thing and work really well in a horror book, in this one...not so much. The tale was disjointed, there was barely any personality to a lot of the characters and you just had to go by the fact that they were labeled either "good" or "bad" guys, and the emotional grid of the story was not so much creepy as disgusting. It took more than half the book to get the meat of the story, and when I final ...more
Jewell Moreno
Jul 07, 2016 Jewell Moreno rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I give up...this is the 2nd book by Mr. Little that I've read. He has a real talent for the spooky, but I'm just don't understand why so many horror authors seem to think Horror means perversity. They cannot tell a good story without adding a copious amounts of disgustingly perverse activity concerning their characters. It does not add anything to the story except to make me wonder if this man watches continous porn while writing a book. I prefer my horror without the snuff attached to it. ...more
Rather anticlimatic ending and very little is explained about what happened at the school in the end. A lot of build up for very little pay off. Also does this person just have a strong loathing of Charter schools or something? Parts of this just read like someone who wanted to write about charter schools that hated them. Kinda like when you're a kid and you write about your siblings being abducted by aliens or something cause you're mad at them?

I don't know. It wasn't as good as I thought it wo
Dec 18, 2015 Elusive rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review
‘The Academy’ is about a charter school which appears to be haunted, causing teachers and students to behave inappropriately. The principal, Jody has become strict and behaves strangely, some students start seeing ghosts, the night shift janitors are afraid and there’s defecation. Yes, seriously.

The plot sounds interesting but the execution was laughable. There were maybe two or three scary bits but other than that, the book was bogged down by all the pointless inappropriate sexual deviance whic
Aug 23, 2014 Angelique rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In all my years of reading I have NEVER read anything as disturbing as this book, though I do wish the ending had been more clear. It makes sense but I wish there had been more explanation of why the teachers became so sexually deviant because that came out of left field. The book certainly set up a creepy environment and a host of creepy characters, but I do wonder: Why did nothing really happen to Linda's family? Everyone else suffered in some way except her. Even the kids dealt with more than ...more
Tom M
Jan 21, 2011 Tom M rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I've not really read that much by Bentley Little, other than a collection of his short stories (featuring the fantastic short "Washingtonians"). After staring at book after book of his in my bookstore & vowing to read more of him, I finally picked up a copy of his to read.

The Academy features a cast of characters (only a handful of which you really need to remember) who attend or work at John Tyler High School, a school that has recently turned into a charter school. This means that while th
Kim Smiley
Ok, I think I'm just getting a little tired of reading this type of book. Lately, all of the Bentley Little books I read seem to be the same. The Academy left me, quite frankly, bored. It took me forever to finish this book and I even skipped some just to get it overwith.

Normally I love his books and I tear right through them, but not this one. In fact, I read 4 other books after I started this one, which never do. If I'm reading a book I read it, finish it and then on to the next. This one just
Benjamin Thomas
Sep 19, 2010 Benjamin Thomas rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
The final book I read on my Spring Break trip (actually only made it half way through before the trip ended so I finished over the weekend) was "The Academy" by Bentley Little. Mr Little writes in the horror genre and this is perhaps the 8th or 9th book I've read by him. He likes to take ordinary circumstances that most of us have had to deal with and then put in a horror element that then spirals out of control. Previous topics have included "The Store", one of my favorites which turns the loca ...more
Dave Moore
Sep 28, 2013 Dave Moore rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
His writing is not the most sophisticated, his plots are not the most intricate, and his characters are not the most developed, but NOBODY, and I include the incomparable Stephen King and the iconic HP Lovecraft, I mean NOBODY taps into that channel of innate fear we all carry like Bentley Little. This guy makes getting a cup of coffee, brushing your teeth, or driving to work into a creepy, disturbing experience. He masterfully sets an atmosphere and describes the mundane in terms of menacing, m ...more
Jenn Swanson
I enjoyed this book. I know that many others do not feel the same way and that is OK. I have always had a soft spot for Bentley Little and this book lived up to what I expected from him. I personally didn't take it as a message against Charter Schools...I think that he just wanted to write a book to entertain people. If you are a fan of horror or read a lot of books by Stephen King, I would recommend this one. It's writing is along the same as King.
Mar 05, 2011 Paul rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first Bentley Little book and there will be others. I thought it was creepy and liked that he didn't try to make sense of the supernatural happenings by giving them some real world explanations.

My biggest complaint was with the heavy-handed way charter schools were discussed. Instead of being an allegory about charter schools, the author took a direct route and regularly inserted commentary about charters complete with statistics and opinions. Most came off as disingenuous and obviou
Todd Nelitz
This one was okay. After having read The Haunted by Bentley Little I was excited to try this one out. I did enjoy this book, just not as much as I had the previous. A few good scares and an eerie atmosphere make this one a winner. If you're dreading school starting as the end of summer draws near, check this book out and suddenly, going back to your normal school won't seem so horrid.
William M.
Jun 29, 2011 William M. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
Anyone who knows the work of Bentley Little can guess what The Academy is about. Although I still enjoy his work and the gimmicks he comes up with, I really need more than an evil fill-in-the-blank that slowly takes over a fill-in-the-blank. Even the ending is what I predicted at the start of the book, and while it may be the logical conclusion, I was hoping Bentley would have put a deeper layer of thought behind this one.

His technical writing is always very proficient, but I felt a few plot li
Jeremy Hurd-McKenney
Almost 3.5 stars, except that it seems like only half of a book. Little sets up a scary, fast-moving plot that gets increasingly ridiculous as the novel goes on--and just when it's getting good--kind of lets it end with a thump. The ending isn't necessarily unsatisfying (although I didn't love it), but comes way too early in the story, sort of fizzling out while leaving a huge number of loose ends.
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Bentley Little is an American author of numerous horror novels. He was discovered by Dean Koontz.

Little was born one month after his mother attended the world premiere of Psycho. He published his first novel, The Revelation, with St. Martin's Press in 1990. After reading it, Stephen King became a vocal fan of Little's work, and Little won the Bram Stoker Award for "Best First Novel" in 1990. He mo
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