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The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magicby Emily Croy Barker
Synopses & Reviews
An imaginative story of a woman caught in an alternate world—where she will need to learn the skills of magic to survive
Nora Fischers dissertation is stalled and her boyfriend is about to marry another woman. During a miserable weekend at a friends wedding, Nora wanders off and walks through a portal into a different world where shes transformed from a drab grad student into a stunning beauty. Before long, she has a set of glamorous new friends and her romance with gorgeous, masterful Raclin is heating up. Its almost too good to be true.
Then the elegant veneer shatters. Noras new fantasy world turns darker, a fairy tale gone incredibly wrong. Making it here will take skills Nora never learned in graduate school. Her only real ally—and a reluctant one at that—is the magician Aruendiel, a grim, reclusive figure with a biting tongue and a shrouded past. And it will take her becoming Aruendiels student—and learning magic herself—to survive. When a passage home finally opens, Nora must weigh her real life” against the dangerous power of love and magic.
For lovers of Lev Grossman's The Magicians series (The Magicians and The Magician King) and Deborah Harkness's All Souls Trilogy (A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night).
"Nora Fischer has lost everything: dumped by her boyfriend, her dissertation going nowhere fast, her life an empty shell. She decides she needs an escape. In this ambitious, densely packed debut by journalist Barker, Nora finds that instead of getting a small break from normality, she has escaped into another world in which magic exists — and is not as cute and cuddly as she might have imagined. Though the story starts with a classic tale of unpleasant fairies working their will, it morphs into something deeper and more nuanced when Nora meets the magician Aruendiel. Barker weaves together classic fantasy and romantic elements (including shout-outs to Pride and Prejudice and hints of Wuthering Heights) to produce a well-rounded, smooth, and subtle tale. Agent: Emma Sweeney, Emma Sweeney Agency. (Aug.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
If Hermione Granger had been an American who never received an invitation to Hogwarts, this might have been her story.” —People
Earning comparisons to wildly popular fantasy novels by Deborah Harkness and Lev Grossman, Emily Croy Barkers enchanting debut offers an intelligent escape into a richly imagined world. And with an appealing female protagonist, cinematic storytelling, wry humor, and wonderfully clever literary references, The Thinking Womans Guide to Real Magic is sure to capture the imaginations of readers everywhere.
During a miserable weekend at a friends wedding, eager to forget about her disastrous breakup and stalled dissertation, Nora Fischer wanders off and somehow finds herself in another realm. There, she meets glamorous Ilissa—who introduces Nora to a decadent new world—and her gorgeous son Raclin. But when the elegant veneer of this dreamland shatters, Nora finds herself in a fairy tale gone incredibly wrong. And the only way she can survive is by learning real magic herself.
About the Author
After twenty years as a journalist, Emily Croy Barker had great fun turning her writing skills to fiction to produce The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic, her first novel. A graduate of Harvard University, she is currently executive editor at The American Lawyer magazine. She lives in New Jersey.
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