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Historical Fiction Discussions > The Gemma Doyle Trilogy - Libba Bray

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message 1: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
I LOVE these books, even though I haven't yet read the last one in the series. I just get sucked into Gemma's worlds, and I love the characters and it just makes me wish that I could be friends with them!

Anyone else read these?


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments yeah...I wasn't the series' biggest fan. I DID read all three in a row, but I just prefer some (*cough* most) of the other YA series I've read.

I DID love the gothic/creepy vibes though, I wish the story could have been better. LOL.


message 3: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
Yes.. the gothic creepy vibes are my favorite! I really like the story, but I didn't read them in a row, which is unusual for me. And I haven't read the last one yet.

But thanks for not liking them enough to send them to me! :D


message 4: by Misty (new)

Misty | 32 comments I've got to agree with Allison on this. I just finished the third, and the only reason I read 2 & 3 was because of the Wild Things challenge. I thought it was ok, but I wanted to be the editor and have some chats with Bray. The 3rd especially could have done with a lot of cutting.
After finishing, I'm kind of indifferent. There were things I liked and things I really didn't, and it kind of balanced so that it's just ehh now.


message 5: by Allison (The Allure of Books) (last edited Aug 08, 2009 02:12PM) (new)

Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments yeah Heather...I wouldn't bother. The first was actually my favorite of the three. Knowing you, I don't think you would like the other two any more.


message 6: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
=\

I really like the stories. Maybe I'm just immature.


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments I don't think you're immature...well, not because of Gemma Doyle :P

to each her own!


message 8: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
I guess we'll see how I feel after reading the third one... It's been a while since I read the first and second, so I'll read all three again and see then.


message 9: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
LOL No biggie... I like some juvenile stuff sometimes. :)


message 10: by Jackie, That's Her Constableness to you! (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) | 2463 comments Mod
Becky wrote: "=\

I really like the stories. Maybe I'm just immature. "



I liked it too B, so you're not alone. :-)
My favorite was the second book because the creepy gothic feel of it. I didn't like the third so much. Not because of the controversial ending but because of some of the character developments. I think Bray could have left some stuff out...it seems like she threw in everything but the kitchen sink into the series.




message 11: by Misty (new)

Misty | 32 comments Jackie wrote: "My favorite was the second book because the creepy gothic feel of it. I didn't like the third so much. Not because of the controversial ending but because of some of the character developments. I think Bray could have left some stuff out...it seems like she threw in everything but the kitchen sink into the series. "

This was pretty much how I felt. The third book was way too long and drawn out. I liked the second best, but overall, I think if she could have condensed all three books down (possibly into one, tight book), it would have been so much better.


message 12: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
OK, so the issues seem to be the third, which I haven't read... Hmmm... I'll have to see what I think of it, when I get around to reading it. :)


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

I've only read the first one. I liked it and will probably finish the series when the challenge starts.


message 14: by April (last edited Aug 11, 2009 09:44PM) (new)

April (booksandwine) | 39 comments Okay, so I am not ashamed to admit I got weepy over the third book. I actually really, really liked it. I liked that there was another boy (most teen girls don't pine over just one guy, I had several in my arsenal, maybe I was a harlot LMAO), I liked the end. I liked that Bray shows how Gemma doesn't need a man to keep her happy.


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments I can appreciate a good bittersweet ending, but ONLY if I'm emotionally involved...and I wasn't with these.

But I'm glad that you felt it April!


message 16: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) | 39 comments Well, I did read them after reading Far From The Madding Crowd, so they felt like brain candy. Granted, I loved Far From The Madding Crowd, some times it's nice to rest after reading "Literary" books. The capital L is on purpose, haha.


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments haha...I loved Far From the Madding Crowd!! I need to read another Hardy soon.


message 18: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) | 39 comments Have you read The Mayor of Casterbridge? Or Jude The Obscure? I have both of those and need to read them as well.



Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments yeah, I have Jude the Obscure and Tess of the d'Ubervilles...but Madding is the only one I've read so far.


message 20: by April (new)

April (booksandwine) | 39 comments Tess of the d'Urbervilles is fantastic. I had to read it over the summer for AP English. I thought I would hate it and it would be the worst book ever, but I actually really loved it and became so emotionally invested. Plus I like Hardy, he was into brunettes, most of his heroines had brown/dark hair.


So, um that Gemma Doyle, what a fox.


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments lol! yeah...so awesome how we can turn a Gemma Doyle thread into Thomas Hardy :P Being random is fun. Good thing I'm a mod or we could get in trouble for things like that ;)


message 22: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
I'm so happy that Al read and loved Madding!! *beams at a book push she actually accepted*

That book was in a set of "Classics" that I found at a discount store, and I read it with no idea of what it was about and I. Fell. In. Love. (Capitals on purpose!)

:)


message 23: by Allison (The Allure of Books) (last edited Aug 12, 2009 10:28AM) (new)

Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments <---- promises to read I Know This Much Is True one of these days to redeem herself for being a jerk :D


message 24: by Becky, Moddess (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) | 3676 comments Mod
Well, coincidentally enough, there are two storylines throughout the book that would qualify as HF.

*stares pointedly at HF Challenge*


message 26: by Misty (new)

Misty | 32 comments Okay, I'm going to get us back on track, and then take us right back off of it...

Allison wrote: "I can appreciate a good bittersweet ending, but ONLY if I'm emotionally involved...and I wasn't with these."

This is exactly how I felt. There were times I wanted to care, kind of, but no.

As for Hardy, I have only read Tess (L O V E D) and have been meaning to read more for awhile. And I love that he was into brunettes. I did not know that. We need more awesomeness on our side. Thanks, April!


Allison (The Allure of Books) (inconceivably) | 304 comments read Madding! I thought it was fun to read! I loved how the story was way more twisted then it appeared to be.

Gah...to get back on track now...

...how bout those gypsies? Gotta love em.


message 28: by Misty (new)

Misty | 32 comments :)

Okay, I'll bite. I thought they were fun, but again, a perfect example of the flatness of Bray's writing. There was never anything surprising about the gypsies; they were exactly the stereotype you'd expect them to be. "Mother" Elena = wise matriarch with mysterious knowledge/abilities, Ithal = slightly newer age Gypsy, not as content to be pushed to the side and treated like an outsider. There end the named characters, and everyone else is a flat "standard' gypsy = suspicious and secretive, and rarely seen.

Development, Ms. Smith. That's all I ask.


message 29: by Lyn (Readinghearts) (last edited Aug 19, 2009 10:57AM) (new)

Lyn (Readinghearts) (lsmeadows) So - I also read the first two and liked them. Now I can't decide whether I should read the third one just to see how bad it might be, or not. LOL. As for Bray's writing, I have to admit that I am not that discerning. I have really loved a lot of books that people tell me are poorly written.


message 30: by Misty (new)

Misty | 32 comments If you didn't have a problem with the first two, you probably won't with the third either.
Though I still don't see why it needed to be 800+ pages...


message 31: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 248 comments I've only read the first one. I recently had to return Rebel Angels to the library unread because I didn't have time for it, but I love the title. I was surprised by the first book. I usually can't read boarding school novels.

Shomeret


message 32: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (JenJen1221) | 54 comments I finished book 1 & thought it was okay. But I do have the rest of the series and hope that the story develops more.


JG (Introverted Reader) Heather wrote: "I've read the first one in the series and I thought it was just ok. I think I would have loved it though if I had read it as a teenager.

I don't have any plans to read the others at this point."


What Heather said. Except the second did make it onto my tbr. I'm not in a hurry to get to it though.


message 34: by Hannah (last edited Jun 23, 2010 07:05AM) (new)

Hannah (harshmallow) | 405 comments I liked the first two. They were fun, sweeping, escapist reads that distracted me from the dismal January weather in Montreal even though they are a far cry from beautifully written.

The third one was a bit too sweeping (800+ pages and lots of pointlessness, in my opinion). Bray needed to rein it in more.


message 35: by Tanya (new)

Tanya Mac (YOYOCHKMEOUTHOTMAILCOM) | 51 comments A tree.....come on!! I mean you read all three books just to see her get together with Kartik and he becomes a tree....my disapointment was endless for days. I was really liking the series but that ruined the whole thing! I can't do it! I'm a sucker for a happy ending. I even re-read it and it didn't help!


message 36: by Diana (new)

Diana | 37 comments I loved the trilogy and I liked how it ended, don't ask why because I'm not completely sure (I can almost never explain why I like a book, which is usually why I'll give it five stars). I like romances a lot but for some unexplainable reason I also really like it when the main characters don't end up together.


message 37: by Carrie (new)

Carrie Chaney (carrie_chaney) | 10 comments Well I loved these. But I did read them as a teenager. I think that really effected my opinion. Rereading them since, they weren't quite as great. I still like them a lot, but more for the memory of how much I LOVED them before, I think. Thre are scenes that stick out in my mind as being very profound, but there are others that just fell flat the second and third times through.

Tanya: I agree. The ending SUCKED.


message 38: by Samita (new)

Samita | 4 comments I love this series, but I too read them before I became a ~serious reader~ My favorite was Rebel Angels.

I'd like to read more of Libba Bray she seems a fun person and it comes through her writing, Gemma made me crack up more than once :)


message 39: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (erpedraja) | 4 comments I really loved these books, but agree that the third book could have done with some serious ending. What I enjoyed most was that none of the heroines were perfect- they were all horribly flawed and admitted it. Gemma owned up to being jealous or selfish sometimes, but she was still someone I could relate to.


message 40: by Nancy from NJ (new)

Katz Nancy from NJ (nancyk18) Again I only read the first book in the Gemma Bray series.

I'm wondering if this happens to other people. Essentially I really enjoy series but find that after maybe 5 or 6 titles if there are that many I don't continue reading. It may be that I feel the books become somewhat of a formula. But if thst's true why have I rad every Alex cross book in the series by James Patterson. Pure formula.


message 41: by Jackie, That's Her Constableness to you! (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) | 2463 comments Mod
Nancy, I find that it depends on how enjoyable the books are in the series. With the Gemma Doyle series each one was different than the one previous to it. The story line progressed quickly enough and I didn't think it was formulaic at all.

However, there are other popular series that seem to go on forever with the plot lines progressing in bits and pieces. Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series comes to mind. As a character Stephanie has not grown at all or has learned from previous mistakes. I've only gotten up to #9 in the series and I'll pick it up if I need a palate cleanser...something funny to read, because while they're formulaic the series is funny. The same thing with the Charlene Harris' Sookie books. The plot has progressed, but it's formulaic (Sookie getting beat up in every book) and I have no idea where she is going with it. I wish she would end it already to be frank.


message 42: by [deleted user] (last edited Dec 04, 2011 10:59AM) (new)

Jackie wrote: "Nancy, I find that it depends on how enjoyable the books are in the series. With the Gemma Doyle series each one was different than the one previous to it. The story line progressed quickly enoug..."

I agree about the Stephanie Plum series. You can only drag out a (view spoiler) for so many books. There are some great, hilarious characters in the books, even with the lack of development in the main character.

I've only read the first in the Gemma Bray series. I thought it was interesting. I'm not sure why I never picked up any of the others.


message 43: by Jackie, That's Her Constableness to you! (last edited Dec 04, 2011 11:10AM) (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) | 2463 comments Mod
Jennifer, that is why I keep picking them up...for the hilarious characters. (view spoiler)

For the Gemma Doyle series, I liked the 1st and 2nd...with the 2nd being the best. The 3rd one was just too much. lol.


message 44: by [deleted user] (last edited Dec 04, 2011 01:04PM) (new)

Jackie wrote: "Jennifer, that is why I keep picking them up...for the hilarious characters. [spoilers removed]

For the Gemma Doyle series, I liked the 1st and 2nd...with the 2nd being the best. The 3rd one was..."


Lula is the best...and Grandma Mazur! I totally agree with what you said in the spoiler. I haven't read the newest yet, but it would be nice to pick it up and have that happen.

I think I'll have to give the other books in the Gemma Doyle series a try later.

So many books....I need more time!


message 45: by Diana (last edited Dec 04, 2011 01:43PM) (new)

Diana | 37 comments Nancy wrote: "Again I only read the first book in the Gemma Bray series.

I'm wondering if this happens to other people. Essentially I really enjoy series but find that after maybe 5 or 6 titles if there are ..."


It almost always bugs me when a series goes further than 4 books, if the story is good enough I'll give it to 6 but after that they should just leave the character alone. Unless each book starts a different story.
I usually try to avoid books if I see that they are a series, I'd rather not get into in the first place. It happened to me with Pretty Little Liars, I wasn't looking forward to reading the other 7 (even though I did enjoy it), and shortly after I found out there would be 4 more.


message 46: by Nancy from NJ (new)

Katz Nancy from NJ (nancyk18) I have a friend who only begins a series it when all of the books are finished and published.I guess it works for her but she might have been surprised when Jean Auel wrote her last book so many years after what she thought was the last one.


message 47: by Cheryl A (new)

Cheryl A | 955 comments Like Jackie, I liked the first two in the series, but couldn't get thru the last one. I also like finding a series with at least a few already written - when I really like a series, I get tired of waiting for the next one. In the YA field, I'm waiting on the next A Spy in the House, which isn't due in the States until February and the follow up to Ruby Red, which hasn't even been translated yet!!


message 48: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Beard (jabeard) Somehow I ended up with two copies of A Great and Terrible Beauty (I think both my wife and I won different contests), yet somehow haven't gotten around to reading it yet. In theory, all creepy Gothic should be right up my alley though.


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