Friday, February 09, 2007

A Great and Terrible Beauty, by Libba Bray, 2003

With her mother's 1895 suicide in a Bombay marketplace, 16-year old Gemma Doyle begins to have alarming visions that fill her with a terrible foreboding of a power seeking to devour. Her family whisks her off to England to Spence Academy for girls to erase the scandal and make a lady of her. But strange visions follow, as does a swarthy young Indian, Kartik, who warns her not to tamper with the power beneath them. The novel invokes Victorian England's obsession with spiritualism and sensuality.

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