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The School for Good and Evil (The School for Good and Evil, #1)
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Book Discussions > Discussion Questions: The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

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Sammee (chasing_sammee) | 379 comments Mod
Discussion Questions: The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

***SPOILER WARNING*** These book club discussion questions reveal important details about The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani. Finish the book before reading on.

When best friends Sophie and Agatha arrive
at the School for Good and Evil, their fates
appear reversed. Princess wannabe Sophie is dumped
in the School for Evil, taking classes in henchmen
training, while witchy loner Agatha attends the School
for Good so she can channel her inner Snow White.
For two hundred years, there’s been an intense
rivalry between the schools. But Sophie and Agatha
are shaking things up, especially when a certain
Prince Charming (son of King Arthur) is thrown
into the mix. Plus, there are those “friendly” matchups such as the Trial by Tale and Circus of Talents,
and the Snow Ball, the most ferocious competition
of all—if a princess-in-waiting doesn’t get asked to
the ball, she fails (and is one step closer to turning
into a helpful rodent).
The School for Good and Evil is an epic journey
into a dazzling new world where flunking your
fairy tale is not an option.

1. What were your reactions to the beginning of the novel? How did the very first sentence shape your predictions of what might unfold in The School for Good and Evil?

2. Describe the legend of the School Master and how the different inhabitants of Gavaldon react to his imminent arrival to take selected children to the School for Good and Evil.

3. Sophie feels like a “red rose amongst thorns” (p. 39) at her school while Agatha perceives herself to be “the cat in a nightingale’s nest” (p. 40) at her school. How do these descriptions help the reader understand how the characters view themselves and their respective settings?

4. Once at the School for Good, Agatha discovers The Gallery of Good and evidence of what has happened to those kidnapped from Galvadon and brought to the school. Agatha realizes that “the line between stories and real life is very thin indeed” (p. 72). What does Agatha discover about the connection
between life at the school and life in Galvadon?

5. Castor and Pollux say that “All children are born with souls that are either Good or Evil. Some souls are purer than others” (p. 80). Discuss the idea that a soul can be either fundamentally good or evil and how this theory is supported—and in some cases refuted—by events in the story.

6. How does Tedros influence the highs and lows of the friendship between Agatha and Sophie throughout the story?

7. Agatha and Sophie both wrestle with their unlikely placement in their individual schools. What story events help Agatha and Sophie recognize the accuracy of their school placements?

8. What is the Storian? How does it influence what happens to Agatha and Sophie at the School for Good and Evil?

9. Sophie’s Never roommates reveal the history of the School Master as they tour Evil Hall. What is the timeline of events in the history of the School Master? What mystery remains after the Great War?

10. Sophie undergoes a transformation in appearance and behavior in her quest to attract Tedros’ attention. Describe the lengths to which Sophie goes to entice her beloved prince.

11. What are Sophie’s true intentions? How does Sophie’s motivation reveal more about her character?

12. How does Agatha demonstrate her loyalty to Sophie throughout their time at the school? What does Agatha’s devoted behavior reveal about her character?
Why do you think Agatha chooses to improve her appearance even after being shown that her inner character is strong enough to triumph over evil?

13. When the School Master’s motivation for bringing Sophie to the School for Good and Evil is revealed, all that has held true for Nevers and Evers melts away. Discuss your reaction to this pivotal plot element and how the School Master’s revelation shapes the ending of the story.

Diane | 9 comments ***Spoiler at the end of this post***
My general thoughts that answers most of the questions is that the repeated thread that we are what our intentions are not necessarily our outward appearance or deeds. When we apologize do we intend to change the behavior that caused the injury requiring the apology or do we say sorry because it is the expected behavior. We need to judge and be judged by the intentions of our deeds not the outward appearance.

Also all of life is a spectrum. This book deals with Good to Evil. Very few "souls are purer than others"

Now I propose another question that comes from the very end of the book: what is Sophie and Agatha's relationship? The kiss of a lover that will bring some one back to life. The comment by one of the girls that we do not need princes

message 3: by Mia (new) - rated it 2 stars

Mia (miapea) | 359 comments I agree with Diane's comments about intent vs actions alone. They did a decent job underscoring that. I'm assuming that agatha and Sophie went home and am curious to read how life will be for them there. Were they going for girl power, or were they dropping in a sneaky homosexual teaser? Maybe both.

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