Zodiac Academy: Origins of an Academy Bully
by Caroline Peckham and Susanne Valenti
Self - Published
Book 0.5 in the Beasts and Bullies Series
Dark magic is forbidden at Zodiac Academy.
That's why I hide it so well.
But now I'm supposed to mentor Darius Acrux: the son of the most ruthless Dragon Shifter in Solaria.
If he's caught using blood magic, he'll lose his claim to the throne.
The problem is? Our families are up to something, and we're determined to find out what. No matter what dark power we must turn to...
18+ (because of the rest of the series)
Romance (main story books)
Zodiac Academy: Origins of an Academy Bully is a novella set 4 years before the first book, The Awakening, in the Supernatural Beasts and Bullies series. It centers around fifteen year old Darius, who has just been Awakened with his powers, and Lance Orion, senior at Zodiac Academy, and excited about the upcoming try outs for the Pitball League a week after graduation. The only thing that can ruin this exciting time in their lives, is their families. Using forbidden dark magic to figure out what they are up to, Darius and Orion work together to get one up on their dangerous parents. But will it help them, or are they at risk of losing everything.
When I first got into this series, I was never actually planning on reading the novellas. But here I am. Reading them. Because I'm hungover from this series, and ruined until the 7th book comes out. Ugh. That's not a bad ugh. This novella is good. It's just a little ... boring. But only because everything that happens in this novella has already been told in the main series. We just get a closer look at what happened the night Clara died, and get a better sense of what Orion in particular has had stolen from him.
While not terribly exciting when you go in knowing the ultimate ending, I did enjoy seeing the heirs being awakened, and the differences in their families. We also get to learn a bit more about Clara and her relationship with Lionel, and her falling into the lure of power. But ultimately, the biggest heartbreak of this novella is Orion's story and all he loses. His hate for Lionel is justified. If you liked the Zodiac Academy books, and are looking for something to read while waiting for Heartless Sky (and holy shit - ominous name much, ladies?), load this up on your kindle, for a quick read.
Darius letting Orion ride on his back
Everyone choking when Mildred brings up her periods
Darius: “Bring my clothes with you,”
I asked as I tossed them into Lance’s arms.
Darius: “Otherwise you’re gonna be stuck looking at my naked ass if I have to shift back before we return.”
Orion: “Wouldn’t want that,”
he agreed with a grimace and I rolled my eyes.
Darius" “And try not to touch my wings when you’re climbing on,”
Orion: “Are they fragile?”
Darius: “No. They're ticklish,” Darius; “Do you often take fourteen year old boys to secluded places?”
Darius joked and I snorted a laugh.
Orion: “Only the hot ones.”
Darius: “Lucky me,”
Darius: “I'll go along with his bullshit engagement for now, but I'm not marrying her.”
Orion: “You won't. But just in case you do, I'm not available as a godfather to your goblin kids.”