Library Ed. Listening Library 2004
CS ISBN 0807220671 $50.00 Eight cassettes
CD ISBN 1400086213 $65.00 Ten CDs
On her sixteenth birthday, Gemma Doyle's mother dies violently. Her father retreats into an opium haze, and she is whisked from her home in India to England. At Spence Academy, where, twenty years earlier, a tragic fire claimed three lives, Gemma discovers a diary recounting the events leading to the tragedy. Thus begins a forbidden and dangerous journey for Gemma and her friendly enemies, Felicity, Pippa, and Ann. Josephine Bailey's performance is especially poignant as Gemma struggles with her awakening sensuality and with a growing awareness of her magical powers. Bailey transforms Libba Bray's arcane facts about girls' schools, the role relegated to women, hypocrisy, and expectations in Victorian England into a plausible excursion into supernatural realms. This coming-of-age story will captivate both older teens and adults. S.J.H. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award (c) AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine [Published: AUG/ SEP 04]
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