The Sweet Far Thing
Libba Bray

Delacorte Press
Trade Paperback/819 pages
ISBN: 0385730306
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". . . the final installment of the Gemma Doyle trilogy . . ."

The Sweet, Far Thing is the final installment of the Gemma Doyle trilogy by Libba Bray. It concludes the adolescent lives of Gemma, Felicity and Ann as they prepare to leave Spence Academy and enter adult society—a prospect dreaded by each one for different reasons.


In previous books, Gemma learned that she inherited an aptitude for magic from her mother who had been a member of a secret society known as The Order. The group fought to control the magic of a world known as “the realms” and this war had cost Gemma’s mother her life. In Rebel Angels, Gemma learned she was the "chosen," and during a confrontation with the evil inhabitants of the realms, she cast a spell to bind all magic to herself.

Now in uncertain control of the entire realm’s magic, Gemma must decide how to distribute the power among the inhabitants of that world before those who are jealous kill her or those who are awed by her abilities turn her vain and evil. If that weren’t enough for a teenaged girl, she must finish her studies, determine her future, and help her friends’ find release from the suffocating, rigid confines of Victorian society. And perhaps most importantly, for the safety of all at Spence she must find out what is really going on at the ruins on the Academy’s grounds.

The style is mostly dialogue, pacing is often agonizingly slow, and the plot tedious. Although the characters are supposedly good friends, no warm feelings between them is apparent. This reader could not help thinking of a very bad female Harry Potter that falls short on every level.

Reviewer: Denise Lowe