paperback, 416 pages

Published Sept. 5, 2019 by HarperVoyager.

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4 stars (2 reviews)

"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 …

3 editions

creepy magic of higher education

4 stars

Interplay of subtle and disturbing otherworldly moments to capture so recognizably the transition from high school to college and the variety of struggles to grasp advanced subjects' - maybe math, maybe language, maybe psychology or sociology - beauty and explanatory power.

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4 stars