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Mary Quirk and the Secret of Umbrum Hall

(Dark Lessons #1)

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4.38  ·  Rating details ·  13 ratings  ·  7 reviews
Mary is a fire elemental, capable of creating flames from the very air around her. But to keep her place in the magic school of Umbrum Hall, she'll need more than that skill to impress the professors. After all, anyone with a match can start a blaze.

Her first year, she worked hard and kept her head down. Something feels different this year, though, right from the start. Se
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Kindle Edition, 234 pages
Published September 8th 2020 by Three Swallows Press
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Average rating 4.38  · 
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 ·  13 ratings  ·  7 reviews


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Beth Cato
Sep 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020, young-adult, fantasy
I received a gratis galley of this book for review.

Mary Quirk and the Secret of Umbrum Hall starts off a new YA series in fun fashion. After reading several intense, dark adult books in a row, I had no idea how much I needed THIS book until I was already immersed--and that immersion happened within a few pages of the start. There was just something delightful about an entrance to a magical school found via a portal in a rural Oklahoma farmhouse. Plus, Mary is an easy character to relate to--a go
...more
Lisa
Sep 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thanks much to the author for providing a copy of this for review purposes. This did not affect the content of my review in any way.

I went into this one not knowing exactly what to expect and wound up having a lot of fun with it! If you're looking for a YA magic school fantasy with a bit of a mystery, this book might be for you!

I'm not super big on magic school settings however, this one worked well for me. The school is more than a magic school where potentials go to learn and develop their pow
...more
Evenstar Deane
Nov 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I like comfortable books where you know horrible things won’t happen to your favorite characters, and I like different systems of magic, and I like magic schools. So this book had a lot going for it, and I was not disappointed. The first part of the book is gentle exploration of the world(s) of the school and exploration of new friendships. I quite enjoyed Mary’s descriptions of her classmates and how her perceptions change as she gets to know some of them better. Mary is also unknowingly explor ...more
Maria
We have a fast discussion and nix the idea of splitting up. Instead, we go together to bring this problem to the attention of the proper authorities. This proves we’ve paid attention to every single horror movie in our combined past.

Mary Quirk and the Secret of Umbrum Hall is about a magic school. That, plus the way the title is phrased, makes Harry Potter comparisons so obvious that St. Vincent has Marry referring to "The H place" (that made me laugh) at several points during the beginning
...more
Mike
What I loved about this book:

1. The protagonist, a teenage girl, is practical, sensible, and (even though she experiences some understandable strong emotions given the events that occur) capable of calming herself down and getting on with the job at hand. She's the kind of person whose goal is to keep her head down, her grades up, and her sarcastic thoughts from escaping her mouth, because she doesn't want any drama.

2. Of course, she gets a big heaping portion of drama. But not in the usual YA
...more
ZD
Apr 22, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, ya, i-own-ebook
3.5
Laura
Sep 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars.
Really wonderful worldbuilding, nuanced characters and good pacing. I'll be eagerly awaiting the next in the series as there are plenty of mysteries left to be solved.
...more
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4 followers
Anna St. Vincent has a mysterious past she doesn't reveal online. Let's just say there was a hometown, a high school, and a college, all somewhere in Oklahoma or Texas. Mary Quirk and the Secret of Umbrum Hall is her first YA novel. ...more

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