Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray

January 5th, 2009 by Debbie's World of Books


I would give this one a 3 out of 5 stars.  I enjoyed it more so than the first 3 but still did not think it was a great series.  It has been awhile since I read the first two so there were a few things I was still fuzzy about.  I couldn’t really remember how Gemma trapped Circe.  Even though I wasn’t in love with the first two books I had to read this one because I wanted to find out if Felicity and Pippa would prove to be good friends or turn on Gemma.  I also wanted to know if Gemma ended up with Kartik.  Gemma’s brother was such a jerk and idiot I found his character really irritating.  I suppose you could say that was good character development since I’m assuming that was how he was supposed to come off.

I read this one pretty fast as I had to get back to work today but there were a few things I did not understand or like about the characters.  I think one of the main reasons I did not care for this series is I did not really like Gemma.  She seems so self-centered and spoiled.  She is always moping about how alone she is and she is tired of people using her and telling her what to do.  Yet over the three books I don’t see her maturing at all and making any decisions that show she is growing up and deserves to choose her own fate.   Even Felicity seemed to grow up more than Gemma in the end despite Gemma’s constant thoughts of how thoughtless Felicity is to the real world and other people’s feelings.   I felt sorry for the way Ann was treated but this is one instance I agreed with Gemma.   If Ann was not going to make any effort to try and change her lot in life then she might just deserve what she gets.  Stop here if you do not want any spoilers.

It was nice to see that Mrs. Nightwing was on the good side.  I was surprised in the end Ms. McCleethy was basically a good character and just misguided in trusting Eugenia Spence.  I did not care for the way she was killed off though.  At first when she tells Pippa to sacrifice her instead of Gemma she appears noble and self-sacrificing but then when she sees Pippa is going through with it and then she protests.  So instead of looking self-sacrificing it looks more like she thought she was bluffing Pippa.  Since she was going to die I would have rather her gone out as the brave heroine.

I was happy to see that even though she was not able to cross over Wendy wasn’t really “sacrificed” like Pippa claimed.  I actually don’t understand what happened there.  When Pippa sacrificed Mr. Darcy and Wendy did she just hand them over to the creatures of the Winterland and not actually kill them?  It was a little confusing since for Ms. McCleethy and Gemma she was going to sacrifice them in her castle.

I was shocked to find out that Eugenia Spence was really the ultimate villainess in the book.  That was one outcome I did not expect.  Not to mention the fact that Circe helped Gemma and even seemed to sort of care for her.  I was sad that Gemma did not end up Kartik.

Posted in 3 Star Books, Books, Young Adult

10 Responses

  1. Josette

    Hey, I’m currently reading this book too! It is so darn thick, I wonder when i’m going to finish it. I’m only at Chapter 26 now and I started the book last year, December.

    I’m not sure about what I think of Gemma but yes, I do find Gemma’s brother annoying. I liked him better when he’s under Gemma’s spell.

    I loved the first two books and since I read them in 2007, I kind of forgot what happened in them. :) So now I’m just reading it and enjoying it as much as I can!

  2. dsuzuki

    I know! These YA books seem to be trending to being longer than the ones I read way back when.

  3. J. Kaye

    Great review. So you didn’t like the first two books?

  4. dsuzuki

    The first two were ok. I would probably rate those at maybe 2.5 out of 5. I’m a hopeless romantic and even though I disliked Gemma I wanted to know if she and Kartik end up together. That was mainly what kept me reading them.

  5. Josette


    I finished reading this book last night! Finally!

    Anyway, I’m confused about Circe. How bad is she? What are her intentions? To gain the power and magic of the realms?

    I went to Amazon and read up the other reviews there. It was interesting to see how some people just hated the book! I didn’t dislike it, in fact, I liked it! :) Great story although quite confusing.

  6. dsuzuki

    Josette, I was a little confused about Circe too. All the books seem to be leading up to this power hungry, heartless person but in the end she seemed to really care for Gemma and tried to help her in the end so she didn’t seem too bad.

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