If you're taking a road trip and are looking for an excellent listen, check out Libba Bray's A Great and Terrible Beauty, read by the amazing Josephine Bailey on CD Book. It is 1895 and Gemma Doyle's life is in upheaval: she is grieving her mother's apparent suicide, wrenched from exotic India, the only home she's ever known, and packed off to posh Spence Academy, a boarding school for young ladies. But the trouble has only just begun. Gemma is determined to find out the truth behind her mother's grisly death and is suddenly plagued by horrific visions. It is with the help of unlikely alliances with her classmates, the beautiful and dangerous Felicity, and poor and shy Ann, that Gemma is able to explore the mysteries of an enchanted netherworld called the Realms, where magic runs wild and nothing is what it seems. What is The Order, the mysterious group Gemma's mother once belonged to? How can Gemma wield the bewildering power she was apparently born with to bring balance between the two worlds? Face-paced and exciting, you will enjoy listening to this historical-thriller-fantasy; Josephine Bailey is a master of capturing the characters' spirit with her powerful performance voice. The ending doesn't tie up neatly though--happily, you can follow Gemma's trials with the other books of the trilogy, Rebel Angels and The Sweet Far Thing.
Recommended by Rachel DeBusk