The Queen’s Book Talk #18 : A Great and Terrible Beauty ( Gemma Doyle #1 ) by Libba Bray

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Paperback, 418 pages
Published March 22nd 2005 by Ember (first published December 9th 2003)

ISBN 0385732317 

(ISBN13: 9780385732314)

Series : Gemma Doyle #1

Characters : Gemma Doyle, Kartik, Ann Bradshaw, Felicity Worthington, Pippa Cross

Setting :United Kingdom 
India, 1895 

Literary Awards : Iowa High School Book Award (2007), Abraham Lincoln Award Nominee (2007)

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It’s 1895, and after the suicide of her mother, 16-year-old Gemma Doyle is shipped off from the life she knows in India to Spence, a proper boarding school in England. Lonely, guilt-ridden, and prone to visions of the future that have an uncomfortable habit of coming true, Gemma’s reception there is a chilly one. To make things worse, she’s been followed by a mysterious young Indian man, a man sent to watch her. But why? What is her destiny? And what will her entanglement with Spence’s most powerful girls—and their foray into the spiritual world—lead to?

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A great and terrible beauty.

At first I thought I was reading another Mara Dyer novel but Libba Bray did not dissappoint. I love her twists and the way she delivered every single one of them. Even though at first it looked like a cheap mean girls rip off but in the end she made all of them mature one way or the other to fit a more grown up character. The way she presented the character growth of her lead character is beyond my expectation. From a whiney little bitch she became a responsible woman. All supporting caharacters are also essential to the story and the spotlight’s not only for the lead character. They all had their moments and that is one of the most important detail for a book with a clique as characters.

The back story of the Order is gripping to the core. It was like you as the reader is unravelling the mystery with the girls. You were a part of the group. All along with the twists and turns.

I loved that this book has zero to none romance whatsoever. There may be little moments with Kartik and Gemma but we haven’t gotten to know much abiut Kartik so that remains a mystery that I am looking forward in knowing.

This book didn’t end with a cliffhanger which is a relief but I am still looking forward to continuing this series.

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Giving this 4 stars because it exceeded my expectations for a supernatural magical book.

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