What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

Vita Nostra (Vita Nostra, #1)
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SOLVED: Adult Fiction > SOLVED. YA/Adult Fantasy about a girl who goes to a Russian Boarding School and all the students don't know what they're learning. [s]

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message 1: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Hopkinson | 6 comments I read this last summer but it was probably written between 2007-2015

Setting: Russia, Modern times
Plot: Girl on beach vacation with her mother gets coins in exchange for doing the bidding of a mysterious man. If she doesn't do what he asks bad things happen. She uses the coins to go to a remote boarding school (university?) where she and all the other classmates don't know what they are learning. The readings make no sense/are unintelligible, the upperclassmen are all injured or missing. At one point the main character has to listen to a blank CD that makes her pass out. It get philosophical about language. Any help would be much appreciated.

message 2: by SBC (new)

SBC (essbeecee) | 856 comments I just came across this book in my to read list and recognised the plot from your description! It is Vita Nostra by Marina Dyachenko. The Goodreads description seems to be in Russian, but here's what my local library catalogue says: "While vacationing at the beach with her mother, Sasha Samokhina meets the mysterious Farit Kozhennikov under the most peculiar circumstances. The teenage girl is powerless to refuse when this strange and unusual man with an air of the sinister directs her to perform a task with potentially scandalous consequences. He rewards her effort with a strange golden coin. As the days progress, Sasha carries out other acts for which she receives more coins from Kozhennikov. As summer ends, her domineering mentor directs her to move to a remote village and use her gold to enter the Institute of Special Technologies. Though she does not want to go to this unknown town or school, she also feels it's the only place she should be. Against her mother's wishes, Sasha leaves behind all that is familiar and begins her education. As she quickly discovers, the institute's "special technologies" are unlike anything she has ever encountered. The books are impossible to read, the lessons obscure to the point of maddening, and the work refuses memorisation. Using terror and coercion to keep the students in line, the school does not punish them for their transgressions and failures; instead, their families pay a terrible price. Yet despite her fear, Sasha undergoes changes that defy the dictates of matter and time; experiences which are nothing she has ever dreamed of and suddenly all she could ever want."

message 3: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Hopkinson | 6 comments Yes that’s it!!! Thank you!!!

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