Review: Onyeka and the Academy of the Sun

Onyeka and the Academy of the Sun is an action-packed, thrilling, wildly enjoyable adventure that kept me utterly gripped throughout.

British-Nigerian Onyeka lives with her over-protective mother.  She hates feeling different and having people stare at her due to her hair, and is desperate to feel that she belongs.  When swimming with her best friend, Cheyenne, she makes an incredible discovery:  her hair has psychokinetic powers which she uses to save Cheyenne from drowning. 

After an argument with her mother and another display of her power, she reveals that Onyeka is a Solari and has inherited her supernatural power from her father, a father who disappeared shortly before they had to leave Nigeria to remain safe.

Onyeka returns to Nigeria with her mother where she is taken to an elite school for Solari, the Academy of the Sun in Lagos where they are taught how to use their powers to keep Nigeria safe.  Onyeka is to train and learn about her powers in the Academy whilst her mother searches for her father, but the Academy may not be quite what it seems …

So begins a fast-paced, heart-racing adventure as Onyeka and her friends unearth hidden truths which lead them into dangerous situations … is there something sinister behind the Academy’s secretive nature and intense interest in the Solari and in keeping their powers hidden from others?  Are the Rogues who attack the Academy the villains they appear to be?  I absolutely loved the twists and turns in this adventure which took me on a such an exciting rollercoaster.  I’m so ready for the next book in this series after that ending!

As well as being an exhilarating adventure, this is also a powerful story of family, friendship and believing in and accepting yourself.  Onyeka has a wonderfully supportive friend in Cheyenne who anchors her, and I loved that this friendship continues after Onyeka leaves London.  I also enjoyed the slow building of her friendship with Adanna who has her own reasons for finding it hard to trust others. Onyeka shows incredible courage and inner strength as she fights to help her friends and uncover terrible truths.

This is an exhilarating, heart-warming adventure that is sure to be a winner with readers of 9+.

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