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A Great and Terrible Beauty
It is told from the perspective of Gemma Doyle , a girl in the year Gemma leaves her home in India to go to a boarding school in England after her mother dies. Once there, she is plagued by clairvoyant visions as she looks into the magical secrets of the school with her three friends Felicity Worthington , Pippa Cross , and Ann Bradshaw. Gemma Doyle, the series' protagonist, is forced to leave India after the death of her mother to attend a private boarding school in London. On her sixteenth birthday, Gemma and her mother stroll through the Bombay market when they encounter a man and his younger brother. But Gemma is still tormented with her visions and is warned by the young man she had met in the market, Kartik, a member of an ancient group of men known as the Rakshana, dating all the way back to Charlemagne, that she must close her mind to these visions or something horrible will happen.
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Added by 9 of our members. A Victorian boarding school story, a Gothic mansion mystery, a gossipy romp about a clique of girlfriends, and a dark other-worldly fantasy--jumble them all together and you have this complicated and unusual first novel. Gemma, 16, has had an unconventional upbringing in India, until the day she foresees her mother's death in a black, swirling vision that turns out to be true. Sent back to England, she is enrolled at Spence, a girls' academy with a mysterious burned-out East Wing. There Gemma is snubbed by powerful Felicity, beautiful Pippa, and even her own dumpy roommate Ann, until she blackmails herself and Ann into the treacherous clique. Gemma is distressed to find that she has been followed from India by Kartik, a beautiful young man who warns her to fight off the visions.