I really like how you had that questionaire segment segment in the beginning to determine what house you go to. It was a nice touch of customization. Also picking customizing, I like how you are able pick what skills you learn. However, if you don't pick any offense magics it somewhat hinders exploration when you go out into the field. I have yet to finish it though.
As for reading the books I think having you learn the skill after 3 days seems sufficient. Four just seems a little too long. I like the overall atmosphere of school and the school theme is catchy. Although, you somewhat made it too obvious the LawMages were the true bad guys. The merchant that illegally sells you books and the Julian's slip of the tongue gave it away for me. As for the merchant have the merchant appear later in the game, when the party is starting to question the school. With Julian have Sylvia cut him off when he says the monsters are not the true enemies instead of mentioning the crystal experiments. That way the thought could linger on who the true bad guy is. The battles also seem to drag because of the slower battle animations and barriers. Maybe, you could have 1 to 2 less barriers on bosses because this where that most apparent.
Anyway, I think this a pretty well put together game, I can understand why it won first place. I was wondering if aren't too busy you wouldn't mind trying out my game. I finished the game, I just need it to be playtested some more. https://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?threads/path-of-the-martyrs.116206/