Rebel Angels by Libba BrayRebel Angels by Libba Bray

Rebel Angels

byLibba Bray

Paperback | December 26, 2006

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Gemma Doyle is looking forward to a holiday from Spence Academy—spending time with her friends in the city, attending balls in fancy gowns with plunging necklines, and dallying with the handsome Lord Denby. Yet amid these distractions, her visions intensify—visions of three girls dressed in white, to whom something horrific has happened that only the realms can explain.

The lure is strong, and soon Gemma, Felicity, and Ann are turning flowers into butterflies in the enchanted world that Gemma takes them to. To the girls' great joy, their beloved Pippa is there as well, eager to complete their circle of friendship.

But all is not well in the realms—or out. Kartik is back, desperately insisting to Gemma that she must bind the magic, lest colossal disaster befall her. Gemma is willing to comply, for this would bring her face-to-face with her late mother's greatest friend, now Gemma's foe—Circe. Until Circe is destroyed, Gemma cannot live out her destiny. But finding Circe proves a most perilous task. . . .

This sumptuous companion to A Great and Terrible Beauty teems with Victorian thrills and chills that play out against the rich backdrop of 1895 London, a place of shadows and light . . . where inside great beauty can lie a rebel angel.
Libba Bray is the New York Times bestselling author of the Gemma Doyle trilogy (A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, and The Sweet Far Thing); the Michael L. Printz Award-winning Going Bovine; Beauty Queens, an L.A. Times Book Prize finalist; and The Diviners series. She is originally from Texas but makes her home in Brooklyn, Ne...
Title:Rebel AngelsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:576 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 1.22 inPublished:December 26, 2006Publisher:Random House Children's BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0385733410

ISBN - 13:9780385733410

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17


Rated 3 out of 5 by from Better than the first novel This is the second installment in the series and the characters are more developped. Although the book is longer, it didn't take me much time to read which is always a good sign that it was somewhat of a page turner. I still think there were a few plotholes that were not spotted during the editing process but I still wish to read the final novel. You also get to dive into the customs of British aristocracy, which I always appreciate.
Date published: 2018-07-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I think I enjoyed this even more than the first The first book is full of character introduction and world-building, but this one is full of character development and has a bit of a more entertaining plot as the girls are on holiday in England. The descriptions are beautiful, this is one of the most immersive YA series I've ever read.
Date published: 2018-01-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Book This book was good but my least favourite of the series. The end is a bit disappointing, it gets strange.
Date published: 2018-01-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So good ! Loved this book in the series !
Date published: 2018-01-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great teen book I loved these series when I was a teenager. It was not your typical vampire romance or outcast/jock romance, etc. This book actually had substance and at the same was captivating.
Date published: 2017-12-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Ok but Not as Good as the First It's an ok sequel, it seems that the first just had such a strong beginning and the author took it in a disappoint direction. But still enjoyable to read. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Magical Such a well written series. Highly recommended to anyone in high school. Romance, magic, adventure. Can't go wrong. It's very well written as well. You can vividly see the book in your mind.. the characters, the scenes. You'll find yourself not wanting to put the book down!
Date published: 2017-11-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Adored sequel Libba Bray provides readers with a strong female character and continues to impress with her writing. The action picks up more in this book than the last. So many questions continue in this book with the mysterious aspect of how unknown the realms and people are- can't stop reading!
Date published: 2017-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Adored sequel Libba Bray provides readers with a strong female character and continues to impress with her writing. The action picks up more in this book than the last. So many questions continue in this book with the mysterious aspect of how unknown the realms and people are- can't stop reading!
Date published: 2017-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great sequel A really great follow up to the first book A Great and Terrible Beauty. The same beautiful characters and writing. Truly a great coming of age story with relatable and flawed characters. One of my favourite book series.
Date published: 2017-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Read it!! I love this book so much. It is the perfect balance of funny, exciting, suspenseful, empowering and romantic
Date published: 2017-10-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it Great. The last hundred pages especially captured me. While I love Gemma, I especailly loved Felicity in this book and how she seemed to grow so much. #plumreviews
Date published: 2017-09-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Rebel Angels An excellent ending to the series. A great fantasy romance novel.
Date published: 2017-06-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favorite of the trilogy The action really picks up in this book - honestly my favorite of the trilogy. I LOVE these books!
Date published: 2017-02-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A great follow up This was a great follow up to the first novel!
Date published: 2017-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good! It was good. I liked that the action was taken away from the school that it explored the world and their relationships more. I wish there was a happier story for Ann and that things were better better Gemma and her father's addiction.
Date published: 2017-01-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from the story and joy continues! This has been a book and series that has stayed with me over the years. Gemma is a strong character to admire. The book is full of mystery and intrigue. Hooked from the beginning! Not as good as the first but a great sequel.
Date published: 2017-01-01
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Rebel Angels I enjoyed this book slightly less than the first because some of the characters bugged me a little.
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Series Great Series.
Date published: 2011-05-19
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not My Favourite. I love the first and the third. This one just was meh. First one of the series I read though, good christmas book... if you like Poppy Warriors attacking your dreams. Pippa really bugged me in this one. But still a okay book.
Date published: 2009-09-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A good book, but it's not over yet It is strongly recommended that you read A Great and Terrible Beauty first as it introduces you to the characters and the actual start of the big picture. I really enjoyed this book a lot more than the first one as I had so many unanswered questions left when I finished it which is why I rushed like mad to find Rebel Angels. It does a good job giving you more information on The Order and the Rakshana and their little magic world that's just behind "that door". So now with that good amount of information the plot in this book goes very smooth and combined with the action and mystery, it makes for a very good Victorian Gothic style book to read. There is enough mystery and intrigue in this book to keep you guessing who's really the "bad guy" here and when you finally do figure it out you might probably feel a bit of shock at first because you thought you knew all along or you may not be surprised at all. It's hard to say. I had quite a few guesses but my first initial guess was wrong so I suppose it was a pleasant surprise for me. If I was right it would have been predictable and perhaps boring. However I liked how you were given options on who might be behind it all so chances are maybe it's meant to be written that way so it won't be so predictable. Gemma is extremely more likable every time she opens her mouth or has a witty thought. If you liked her in the first book, you'll like her even more here. I liked her sense of independence and she did have this extra spark in her personality which made her stand out against the rest of the other characters. Speaking of wit, despite the real serious dark tones in the novel, there's little bits of comedy here and there that made me chuckle several times. I think it was because you can also hear what Gemma is thinking and some of the things that run in her head is actually quite funny (especially when Felicity and Ann decide to pick at her and laugh) The ending of the novel leaves you with wanting more. You know that the fight isn't even over. They're just taking a break before the big one begins. If you have ever seen Lord of the Rings The Two Towers remember the ending? yeah, it feels like that. You know there's something big that's going to happen in the grand finale. I'm really looking forward to how this ends.
Date published: 2009-07-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Great Sequel a perfect sequel to the first book. it was funny but there was also romance and adventure. the elegence of the victorian era where this book was set was perfect. definitly makes you want more
Date published: 2009-07-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutley Brilliant!! This was the perfect sequel, the adventure continued with more mystery, suspense and thrill. I could not put this book down, at all!! Each page draws you in to read more, Gemma`s search for the Temple is exciting and full of mystery. Libba Bray writes these books beautifully, the words come to life on page, and as Gemma is having her visions its like you can see them yourself. I love this series so far, I hope the next book, The Sweet Far Thing is as good as the first two.. or even better!!
Date published: 2009-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Perfect Sequel to A Great and Terrible Beauty This book was just as good as the first. it picked up right were the first left off, and never skiped a beet. If you like the first you will definetly enjoy reading the second, it still has the same lovable characters as the first and the plot just continues to deepen. I Couldn't put this book down, and i recommend it to all the Libba Bray fans out there.
Date published: 2009-06-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Follow Up Gemma visits London during the Christmas holiday with her alcoholic father, pretentious brother, and frigid grandmother. Gemma is experiencing late 19th century London as a young lady; dallying with the handsome Lord Denby, being watched over by Kartik, and attending grand balls and operas. While in London, Gemma, Ann, and Felicity return to the realms, and discover their dead friend Pippa, awaiting them in the garden. But not is all merry and bright in the realms, or in Gemma's sub conscience - visions of three girls dressed in white, haunting Gemma with the horrific events that happened to them. Circe is about, the powerful magic of the realms has been unleashed, and it is up to Gemma to find the Temple and bind the magic. Along the way, she encounters many a strange, and sometimes frightful, creatures all promising their aid, but for something in return. Rebel Angels is a great book, even better in my opinion, than Great and Terrible Beauty. Much more deceit, surprising twists and thrills, fantasy creatures and myths, all while Gemma is still trying to figure out who she is and why she has been given such an extraordinary gift, and dealing with that extraordinary responsibility.
Date published: 2009-05-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Totally love it I just love so much this book, I read it all the night till a finish it! This book surprise me so much, lot of thing were unexpected. The writting is very nice and you fell a strong connection to Gemma like she is your friend and she's talking to you. The only thing that annoy me was her friends: Felicity and Ann, they don't act at all like friend, they just are mean to each other and they don't care for the others feelings. They even look like they are "friend" with Gemma because she can enter the realms. Except for this, the book is excellent and I just adore the it.
Date published: 2009-02-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Just as Enjoyable as the First Continuing from where A Great and Terrible Beauty left off, it is Christmas time at last and the girls of Spence Academy are free for the holidays. With Gemma, Felicity and Ann heading to London, mischief is bound to occur. Once there, in between fancy ball gowns, the declining state of mind of her father, and a dashing new suitor, Simon Middleton, Gemma has to deal with three ghostly visitors, all while attempting to decipher the mad ramblings of a young woman who claims to know a great deal about the Order. There is a definite distinction between the magical and ordinary aspects of life in the novel. The balls, romance, and worries of a young woman are separate from the Realms, but each life hovers discreetly on the edges. This book also seemed more finished than the first, the story ended more distinctly, but it still left room for the next part of the trilogy. I’ve always had a soft spot for Felicity and in this book my love of her character grew. This novel was slightly more mature than the previous book, which I enjoyed, since it shows how Gemma has to grow up. The one part I did not enjoy was how the majority of the story was fairly predictable. Recommended For: 12+
Date published: 2008-11-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The adventure continues! Rebel Angels is the second book in Libba Bray's trilogy about Gemma Doyle and her magical world. The first book, "A Great and Terrible Beauty" takes place in a private school for girls near London. "Rebel Angels" is the sequel; taking place in London, mainly, during Christmas. Not to forget, that this is London in the 1800's, a beautiful period of time specially for a story like this one. I love the period of time, I love the characters and I love Gemma's adventures. It's a "young adult" book, but I would say that anyone can enjoy it!!
Date published: 2008-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book I could not put this book down. It was just as great as the first book, if not better. I am pleased that this is in my collection of books. I love it!.
Date published: 2008-06-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! I love this sequel!! one of the best! it has mystery, magic, and romance! it's sooo good, i could'nt put it down till i was finish!!! loved it!!!
Date published: 2008-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book This book is great. It keeps you wanting to read more. I couldn't stop reading it. I've read all three in the series. Libba Bray is an amazing writer.
Date published: 2008-01-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from What Sequels AAre Made Of Much darker than the first novel, but the pace continues and the story develops quite nicely. A Very good companion to the first novel! :)
Date published: 2008-01-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from SO ENCHANTING i love this series so far - and i agree, it is very much like a girl version of harry potter. that's saying a lot, considering how much i absolutely obsess over harry potter. i absolutely cant wait for the next book!!
Date published: 2007-07-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My Favorite series!!!! This book was awesome!!! Gemma Doyal is like the girl version of Harry Potter!! I can't wait intil the 3rd book in this series comes out (The Sweet Far Thing---- December 26) I would recomend this book to anyone who likes romances, comedy and Victorian time period books! Please read this book! But beware you will be hooked!!
Date published: 2007-07-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Intriguingly Fabulous Libba Bray’s “Rebel Angels” is written in first person, where the internal narrator is a young teenage girl experiencing the world around her. This book revolves around four main girls that appeared in the first book of this series. All these girls are complete opposites of each other. They bring their own uniqueness to the book. Libba Bray does an excellent job in exploring the other character’s minds by using the main character’s thoughts and what she sees (reaction on the other character’s faces, their tone of voice, etc.). Since the setting of the novel is in London, England 1895, everyone in the novel exudes a proper essence. The mood of this book is very dark due to the setting of the novel and also the presence of evil surrounding the main characters. Although the genre of this novel is fantasy/science fiction, this series of books deals a lot with reality and it is very easily relatable. The main theme in “Rebel Angels” I found was trust. I found that this thread strung along and all the events that had occurred in the book led back to the question of who to trust and who not to trust. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and loved it just as much as the first novel of this series (“A Great and Terrible Beauty”). This book is highly unpredictable unless you pay close attention to the most miniscule details. Just when I thought I had the whole book figured out, it turns out that my predictions were completely off. I love how this book is subtly suspenseful. I could not put the novel down because it keeps you guessing at the end of each chapter. It has a little bit of everything in this book (yes, even romance) and it is just absolutely wonderful. Want to explore life in the 1895’s through the eyes of an adolescent girl . . . with extraordinary powers? Why not do it through reading an amazing book.
Date published: 2007-04-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very Good!!! Well...what can I say about this book? It's a very great book I must say!! very well written. It makes me want to live in the old days where women used to wear wonderful gowns and such. Well. I can't say much because I'm still halfway through the book. So ya, I highly reccommend this book.... very good!!!!!!! 100000000000000 thumbs up!!!!
Date published: 2007-03-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This is an amazing fantasy sequel. This book stays with you long after you've finshed its delightful and intriguing story. 100 hundred thumbs up (even though thats physically impossible..)
Date published: 2007-02-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from MY GOD! My god this book was amazing! Even better then A Great And Terrible Beauty! I love it! I COULD LITERALLY NOT PUT IT DOWN!
Date published: 2007-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful! I couldn't put it down once! One night and read until 12am(so I read for 2h) and when i finally decided I should sleep, before I fell asleep I couldn't stop thinking 'what will happen?' and I put myself in Gemma's shoes and then I'll think about what Karitik is thinking about Gemma. It is one of my favourites.
Date published: 2006-11-20

Read from the Book

December 1895Spence Academy for Young LadiesAh, Christmas!The very mention of the holiday conjures such precious, sentimental memories for most: a tall evergreen tree hung with tinsel and glass; gaily wrapped presents strewn about; a roaring fire and glasses filled with cheer; carolers grouped round the door, their jaunty hats catching the snow as it falls; a nice fat goose resting upon a platter, surrounded by apples. And of course, fig pudding for dessert.Right. Jolly good. I should like to see that very much.These images of Christmas cheer are miles away from where I sit now, at the Spence Academy for Young Ladies, forced to construct a drummer boy ornament using only tinfoil, cotton, and a small bit of string, as if performing some diabolical experiment in cadaver regeneration. Mary Shelley's monster could not be half so frightening as this ridiculous thing. The figure will not remind a soul of Christmas happiness. More likely, it will reduce children to tears."This is impossible," I grumble. I elicit no pity from any quarter. Even Felicity and Ann, my two dearest friends, which is to say my only friends here, will not come to my aid. Ann is determined to turn wet sugar and small bits of kindling into an exact replica of the Christ child in a manger. She seems to take no notice of anything beyond her own two hands. For her part, Felicity turns her cool gray eyes to me as if to say, Suffer. I am.No, instead, it is the beastly Cecily Temple who answers me. Dear, dear Cecily, or as I affectionately refer to her in the privacy of my mind, She Who Inflicts Misery Simply by Breathing."I cannot fathom what is giving you such trouble, Miss Doyle. Really, it is the simplest thing in the world. Look, I've done four already." She holds out her four perfect tinfoil boys for inspection. There is a round of oohing and aahing over their beautifully shaped arms, the tiny woolen scarves--knit by Cecily's capable hands, but of course--and those delicate licorice smiles that make them seem overjoyed to be hanging by the neck from a Christmas tree.Two weeks until Christmas and my mood blackens by the hour. The tinfoil boy seems to be begging me to shoot him. Compelled by a force larger than myself, I cannot seem to keep from placing the crippled ornament boy on the side table and performing a little show. I move the ugly thing, forcing him to drag his useless leg like Mr. Dickens's treacly Tiny Tim."God bless us, every one," I warble in a pathetic, high-pitched voice.This is greeted by horrified silence. Every eye is averted. Even Felicity, who is not known as the soul of decorum, seems cowed. Behind me, there is the familiar sound of a throat being cleared in grand disapproval. I turn to see Mrs. Nightwing, Spence's frosty headmistress, staring down at me as if I were a leper. Blast."Miss Doyle, do you suppose that to be humorous? Making light of the very real pain of London's unfortunates?""I--I . . . why . . ."Mrs. Nightwing peers at me over her spectacles. Her graying pouf of hair is like a nimbus warning of the storm to come."Perhaps, Miss Doyle, if you were to spend time in service to the poor, wrapping bandages as I once did in my own youth during the Crimean War, you would acquire a healthy and much-needed dose of sympathy.""Y-yes, Mrs. Nightwing. I don't know how I could have been so unkind," I blabber.Out of the corner of my eye, I can see Felicity and Ann hunched over their ornaments as if they were fascinating relics from an archeological dig. I note that their shoulders are trembling, and I realize that they are fighting laughter over my terrible plight. There's friendship for you."For this you shall lose ten good conduct marks and I shall expect you to perform an act of charity during the holiday as penance.""Yes, Mrs. Nightwing.""You shall write a full account of this charitable act and tell me how it has enriched your character.""Yes, Mrs. Nightwing.""And that ornament needs much work.""Yes, Mrs. Nightwing.""Have you any questions?""Yes, Mrs. Nightwing. I meant, no, Mrs. Nightwing. Thank you."An act of charity? Over the holiday? Would enduring time with my brother, Thomas, count toward that end? Blast. I've done it now."Mrs. Nightwing?" The sheer sound of Cecily's voice could make me froth at the mouth. "I hope these are satisfactory. I do so want to be of service to the unfortunate."It's possible that I shall lose consciousness from holding back a very loud Ha! at this. Cecily, who never misses an opportunity to tease Ann about her scholarship status, wants nothing to do with the poor. What she does want is to be Mrs. Nightwing's lapdog.Mrs. Nightwing holds Cecily's perfect ornaments up to the light for inspection. "These are exemplary, Miss Temple. I commend you."Cecily gives a very smug smile. "Thank you, Mrs. Nightwing."Ah, Christmas.With a heavy sigh, I take apart my pathetic ornament and begin again. My eyes burn and blur. I rub them but it does no good. What I need is sleep, but sleep is the very thing I fear. For weeks, I've been haunted by wicked warnings of dreams. I cannot remember much when I awaken, only snatches here and there. A sky roiling with red and gray. A painted flower dripping tears of blood. Strange forests of light. My face, grave and questioning, reflected in water. But the images that stay with me are of her, beautiful and sad."Why did you leave me here?" she cries, and I cannot answer. "I want to come back. I want us to be together again." I break away and run, but her cry finds me. "It's your fault, Gemma! You left me here! You left me!"That is all I remember when I wake each morning before dawn, gasping and covered in perspiration, more tired than when I went to bed. They are only dreams. Then why do they leave me feeling so troubled?From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

“This extraordinary novel moves along at breathtaking speed from beginning to end . . . astounding.”—VOYA in a Perfect 10 Review“A remarkable fantasy steeped in Victorian sensibility . . . Gemma and her friends are pitch perfect as young women in a world poised for change, uncertain of their places.” —School Library Journal “Rich social commentary, romance, and adventure, even more sumptuously created . . . teens will long for another sequel.” —Booklist “Bray provides a satisfying ending, yet she implies a further struggle for power. Fans will want to stay tuned.” —Publishers Weekly“Gemma’s shivery adventures, lacking easy answers, make for an exciting mystical quest.” —Kirkus Reviews "Featuring complex and compelling characters and an intricately woven plot, this riveting fantasy is steeped in Victorian sensibility -- and filled with history, mystery, and spellbinding romance.""This novel has enough mystery and excitementto thrill the most critical readers." --Children's LiteratureA New York Times BestsellerA USA Today BestsellerA Publishers Weekly BestsellerA Book Sense BestsellerA Book Sense Top Ten SelectionBBYA (ALA/YALSA Best Book for Young Adults)Colorado Blue Spruce Young Adult Book AwardIowa High School Book AwardPennsylvania Young Reader’s Choice AwardGolden Spur Children’s Literature Book Award (TX)