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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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Chilling tale undermines Victorian-like society

An unsettling tale of a beautifully dark atmosphere sends chills down the spines of anyone who reads A Great and Terrible Beauty. It is the story of Gemma Doyle, a proper English girl of 16.

Gemma dreams of nothing but returning to London and leaving the hot and crowded streets of Bombay, India, the place her mother raised her since her childhood.

Her wish comes in a frightening way. While on her own in the streets, Gemma experiences a violent vision of her mother?s death, and finds it to be true.

She is sent back to London to be enrolled in the Spence Academy, a prestigious boarding school for girls of all ages. There she discovers the strange and mystical happenings that took place there 20 years before and the secrets of her own power.

Libba Bray, the author of A Great and Terrible Beauty, creates a stunning picture of life in the late Victorian era. It is told through the eyes of an independent and sometimes improper girl, who is tied down to the strictness of the English culture.

Gemma?s frankness with things such as relationships depicts how much she is similar to any other woman today. Her autonomy clashes with the one-track minds that inhabit the school.

The supernatural ingredient to the story is what makes A Great and Terrible Beauty such a gripping tale. It sets the book apart from other stories by entering unfamiliar territory and adding strange and paranormal activities.

Readers who enjoyed Charles Dickens and Charlotte Bronte?s novels but are looking for something a little more personal and relatable should pick up Libba Bray?s new captivating novel.

While the novel itself was appealing, it left some questions unanswered at the end of the book. However, it has been confirmed that the full story will be told within a trilogy. The book?s companion, Rebel Angels, was recently released. Both books can be purchased at any local bookstore.

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