The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann
Every year in Quill, thirteen-year-olds are sorted into categories: the strong, intelligent Wanteds go to university, and the artistic Unwanteds are sent to their deaths.
Thirteen-year-old Alex tries his hardest to be stoic when his fate is announced as Unwanted, even while leaving behind his twin, Aaron, a Wanted. Upon arrival at the destination where he expected to be eliminated, however, Alex discovers a stunning secret—behind the mirage of the "death farm" there is instead a place called Artime.
In Artime, each child is taught to cultivate their creative abilities and learn how to use them magically, weaving spells through paintbrushes and musical instruments. Everything Alex has ever known changes before his eyes, and it's a wondrous transformation.
But it's a rare, unique occurence for twins to be separated between Wanted and Unwanted, and as Alex and Aaron's bond stretches across their separation, a threat arises for the survival of Artime that will pit brother against brother in an ultimate, magical battle.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Actually I give it 3.5 stars, but Goodreads won't allow half-star ratings. It was good. I enjoyed reading this. It had a great beginning and an exciting ending but the middle kinda lost me at times. Still, great concept all in all. Great writing. There were a few whoa moments which I appreciated. And I'll check out the sequel as well. On a side note, really weird animal morphed characters hurt my mind a little. I had a hard time envisioning the crocodile/octopus hybrid teacher. Other than that...