Gemma Doyle Trilogy #3: The Sweet Far Thing. By Libba Bray. Delacorte Press. $17.99.
Hattie Big Sky. By Kirby Larson. Delacorte Press. $8.99.
Books can be predictable award winners, predictable candidates for best-seller lists, and can nevertheless be, at bottom, predictable – as these two are. This is not to take away from their emotional impact or their finely wrought descriptions of time and place – Libba Bray’s of an alternative Victorian England, Kirby Larson’s of
The Sweet Far Thing is a long, long read, at 75 chapters and more than 800 pages, as Bray interweaves all the tales she has told in A Great and Terrible Beauty and Rebel Angels into this finale of her trilogy. The first book began in 1895, with 16-year-old Gemma Dole shipped away from the life she has known in
Hattie Big Sky wears its Newbery Honor medal proudly on the cover of the new paperback edition, and tells its real-world story briskly, in under 300 pages. Based largely on Larson’s own family history, it is an affecting tale of hardship and a 16-year-old girl’s attempt to build a solid homesteading life in