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The Cheap Reader

The Cheap Reader is Alison. She works in a library and dreams of one day becoming a Youth Services Librarian. She loves reading and has a soft spot in her heart for YA and MG fiction.

Great and Terrible Beauty

A Great and Terrible Beauty - Libba Bray Boarding schools are always interesting. I really liked the idea of a boarding school ‘teaching’ the girls how to be proper ladies and wives. It’s fascinating because it’s so different from our culture today. It’s also incredibly sad because the girls weren’t expected to do much, just to behave well. If they couldn’t marry a good man with money, all hope was lost.Characters were nicely developed. Initially they seemed shallow and you thought you knew what the author would do with them. It’s a nice surprise that they’re pretty deep. Felicity wants power, Pippa wants true love, and Ann wants beauty. Those seem like shallow aspirations but when as you get to know the girls, you truly understand how important those things are. Gemma was likeable enough. I always appreciate girls who don’t fall in line with what society wants. I loved her sarcasm and spunkiness even though it seemed out of place for the time period.Great atmosphere. Loved the setting. I thought the book was going to be primarily historical fiction with some mystery in it. The fantasy/paranormally elements took me by surprise. Once I got used to it, it was very enjoyable. It was still a bit weirdly placed but it didn’t bother me too much.The bottom line? Surprisingly enjoyable. I’ll most likely grab book 2 at some point.