Industrial-Sized Deals TextBTS15 Shop Women's Handbags Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon $5 Albums $5 Off Fire TV Stick Subscribe & Save Shop Popular Services pivdl pivdl pivdl  Amazon Echo Starting at $99 Kindle Voyage Nintendo Digital Games Gear Up for Football Baby Sale
The Sweet Far Thing (The Gemma Doyle Trilogy Book 3) and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
  • List Price: $10.99
  • Save: $2.08 (19%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by
Gift-wrap available.
The Sweet Far Thing (Gemm... has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Used, good condition book. Average cover wear. Pages may have writing, underlining, highlighting and/or notes. Otherwise, pages remain in good condition. Exactly as pictured. Fast shipping from Amazon's fulfillment warehouse!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Sweet Far Thing (Gemma Doyle, Book 3) Paperback – April 28, 2009

261 customer reviews

See all 13 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$5.85 $0.02

Auggie & Me by R. J. Palacio
Auggie & Me
Check out one of this month’s featured new releases in Children's Books, by R. J. Palacio. Learn more | See related books
$8.91 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

The Sweet Far Thing (Gemma Doyle, Book 3) + Rebel Angels  (The Gemma Doyle Trilogy Book #2) + A Great and Terrible Beauty (The Gemma Doyle Trilogy)
Price for all three: $24.53

Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews


Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, October 29, 2007:
“A huge work of massive ambition.”

Review, People, December 24, 2007:
"This is a rare treat that offers a bit of everything--romance, magic, history, Gothic intrigue--and delivers on all of it in 819 beautifully crafted pages."

From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Libba Bray is the author of the New York Times bestselling Gemma Doyle trilogy, comprised of A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, and The Sweet Far Thing. She is also the author of Beauty Queens and Going Bovine, which won the Michael L. Printz Award. Libba lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband, son, and two cats. Visit her at

See all Editorial Reviews

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 848 pages
  • Publisher: Ember; Reprint edition (April 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440237777
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440237778
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.8 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (261 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,561 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

author spotlight
"I'm one of those people who has to write. If I don't write, I feel itchy and depressed and cranky. So everybody's glad when I write and stop complaining already."-Libba Bray

Libba Bray is the author of the acclaimed A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, and The Sweet Far Thing. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

What is it about writing an author bio that gives me that deer-in-headlights feeling? It's not exactly like I'm going to say "I was born in Alabama..." and somebody's going to jump up and snarl, "Oh yeah? Prove it!" At least I hope not.

I think what gets me feeling itchy is all that emphasis on the facts of a life, while all the juicy, relevant, human oddity stuff gets left on the cutting room floor. I could tell you the facts-I lived in Texas for most of my life; I live in New York City with my husband and five-year-old son now; I have freckles and a lopsided smile; I'm allergic to penicillin.

But that doesn't really give you much insight into me. That doesn't tell you that I stuck a bead up my nose while watching TV when I was four and thought I'd have to go to the ER and have it cut out. Or that I once sang a punk version of "Que Sera Sera" onstage in New York City. Or that I made everyone call me "Bert" in ninth grade for no reason that I can think of. See what I mean?

God is in the details. So with that in mind, here is my bio. Sort of.

by Libba Bray

1. I lived in Texas until I was 26 years old, then I moved to New York City with $600.00 in my shoe ('cause muggers won't take it out of your shoe, y'know . . . riiiiight . . .) and a punchbowl (my grandmother's gift) under my arm. I ended up using the punchbowl box as an end table for two years.

2. My dad was a Presbyterian minister. Yes, I am one of those dreaded P.K.s-Preacher's Kids. Be afraid. Be very afraid . . .

3. The first story I ever wrote, in Mrs. McBee's 6th grade English class, was about a girl whose family is kidnapped and held hostage by a murderous lot of bank robbers who intend to kill the whole family-including the dog-until the 12-year-old heroine foils the plot and saves the day. It included colored pencil illustrations of manly-looking, bearded criminals smoking, and, oblivious to the fact that The Beatles had already sort of laid claim to the title, I called my novel, HELP. My mom still has a copy. And when I do something she doesn't like, she threatens to find it.

4. My favorite word is "redemption." I like both its meaning and the sound. My least favorite word is "maybe." "Maybe" is almost always a "no" drawn out in cruel fashion.

5. My three worst habits are overeating, self-doubt, and the frequent use of the "f" word.

6. The three things I like best about myself are my sense of humor, my ability to listen, and my imagination.

7. I have an artificial left eye. I lost my real eye in a car accident when I was eighteen. In fact, I had to have my entire face rebuilt because I smashed it up pretty good. It took six years and thirteen surgeries. However, I did have the pleasure of freezing a plastic eyeball in an ice cube, putting it in a friend's drink, ("Eyeball in your highball?") and watching him freak completely. Okay, so maybe that's not going down on my good karma record. But it sure was fun.

8. In 7th grade, my three best friends and I dressed up as KISS and walked around our neighborhood on Halloween. Man, we were such dorks.

9. I once spent New Year's Eve in a wetsuit. I'd gone to the party in a black dress that was a little too tight (too many holiday cookies) and when I went to sit down, the dress ripped up the back completely. Can we all say, mortified? The problem was, my friends were moving out of their house-everything was packed and on a truck-and there was nothing I could put on . . . but a wetsuit that they still had tacked to the wall. I spent the rest of the party maneuvering through throngs of people feeling like a giant squid.

10. I got married in Florence, Italy. My husband and I were in love but totally broke, so we eloped and got married in Italy, where he was going on a business trip. We had to pull a guy off the street to be our witness. It was incredibly romantic. Florence is still one of my favorite cities in the world.

11. I often write in longhand and type it into the computer later, editing as I go. Sitting in my favorite coffeehouse with a new notebook and a hot cup of java is my idea of heaven.

12. I'm related to Davy Crockett on my mom's side. Honest.

13. I grew up doing theatre and spent a long time as a playwright. I still think very visually when I write.

14. Some of my favorite movies of all time (subject to change when I think of other movies I love) are All About Eve, Brazil, Blade Runner, Spinal Tap, Citizen Kane, Harold & Maude, To Kill a Mockingbird, Singin' in the Rain, and probably a million more that I can't think of right now. I have never made it through The Wizard of Oz without crying. Not once.

15. Naming my favorite books feels like naming a favorite child-impossible. But here's my list of some Y.A. books I love as of 4:03pm today. Tithe by Holly Black. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger. Lord of the Flies by William Golding. 33 Snowfish by Adam Rapp. Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher. Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (not really Y.A. but I read it when I was 16 and it rocked my world). Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. Here's what's on my nightstand to read: The First Part Last by Angela Johnson. Acceleration by Graham McNamee. The Literary Opus of Daniel Elam by Daniel Elam. By the Time You Finish this Book You Might Be Dead by Aaron Zimmerman.

16. I love to be scared. Not "hey, I think I smell smoke . . ." scared, but creepy, paranoid, what's-that-out-there-in-the-dark, ghost story scared. It's no surprise that I was the girl who got invited to the slumber parties because I could be counted on to tell a tale to scare the bejesus out of you.

17. In homage to a book I just read entitled, FIVE MEN WHO BROKE MY HEART, I submit: The first boy who broke my heart (age 6) didn't want to sit next to me because I'd wet my pants in reading circle once and he thought I was gross. Damn my small bladder! The second boy who broke my heart (age 16) was a drummer with a band (the start of a trend, folks...) and he threw me over for a really cool chick I couldn't even bring myself to hate. The third boy who broke my heart (ages 20--24, ay yi yi . . .) was a strapping hunk of bodaciousness with the mind of Einstein. We had the exact same birthday, same year and everything. So the time he forgot to wish me a happy birthday was kind of the beginning of the end, I think. The fourth boy who broke my heart (age 25) was also a drummer. I had to stop with the drummers. The fifth boy . . . well, I married him, and if he breaks my heart, I'm going to burn all his favorite, rare import punk vinyl in the middle of the living room, so he's been warned.

18. I'm one of those people who has to write. If I don't write, I feel itchy and depressed and cranky. So everybody's glad when I write and stop complaining already.

19. My Pennsylvania Dutch great-great-great grandmother was supposedly a psychic who could see and speak to the dead. Sort of a witch, I guess. Her husband was an undertaker, and she would have these visions of someone bringing in a string of a particular size (people were measured for their coffins in this way) and it would come true. Creepy stuff, but fascinating.

20. If I were stuck on a deserted island, the five indispensable CDs I'd take would be London Calling by the Clash, Quadrophenia by The Who, Aretha Franklin's Greatest Hits, To Venus and Back by Tori Amos, and Elvis Costello's Greatest Hits.

21. I hate doughnuts. Weird but true.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

(What's this?)
#89 in Books > Teens
#89 in Books > Teens

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Kate Coombs VINE VOICE on December 31, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Well, I spent the first 3/4 of this book racked by horror movie syndrome: you know, when you're watching the girl go down the long, dark hall and reach for the doorknob, having split off from the rest of the group, and you're yelling, "Don't do it!" at the screen? Only in this case, I was yelling at Gemma not to trust all the wrong people and misuse the magic she holds. She does both, repeatedly, for hundreds of pages.

Yet Bray's point seems to be that it's hard to know what to do when you're a 17-year-old girl, let alone when you carry far too great a responsibility and everyone around you is clamoring for you to hand it over to them. So while Gemma naturally distrusts the authoritarian Order and the Rakshana, she is more conflicted about her supposed allies in the realms, particularly two--make that three--individuals who are not nearly as dead as they should be.

At the same time, Gemma and her friends are trying to figure out what to do about their oh-so-scripted futures, not to mention troubles with family members. And Gemma worries over her feelings for Kartik, who pulls away, then doesn't, then does, even as she tries to make sense of events in the Realms and the warnings she is receiving in visions.

It kind of reminds me of how Harry Potter and his friends spend the middle of the last book glumly hiding out and quarreling because they lack all kinds of important information--and simply because they're teenagers and really don't know what to do next.

The Sweet Far Thing is a long read, but it is incredibly well written and moves at a surprisingly fast clip. (Watch for some lovely metaphors tucked here and there in Bray's prose.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on November 25, 2009
Format: Paperback
Thankfully, this is over. I thought I would never get through this last installment of Gemma Doyle trilogy. Why, oh why does this book have to be so long? Take out 300-400 pages of unnecessary secondary characters and going nowhere plot lines, its 5 epilogues, and "The Sweet Far Thing" would be a reasonably decent book (I suppose). But alas, Bray chooses to ruin her own rather original series with this endless and bizarre last installment.

I've read quite a few reviews and know how many people are disappointed with the ending. I don't really mind where all the characters end up in this story, but I rather mind how and why they get there.

Gemma's books have never been about romance for me. The underlying idea of these books is women's independence, I get it. So I probably wouldn't have minded Kartik's sacrifice if it made any sense. For me, he dies because of Gemma's stupidity. Should she have done what she promised to do in the end of book 2 (divide the magic among the inhabitants of the realms), none of the events in the books would have happened. Thus his death is pointless in my opinion. In fact, the more I think of the details of Kartik's death, the less I understand what and why exactly happened to him. Basically, Gemma stabs the Tree releasing Winterlands' magic, Kartik sucks in this magic, then pours the magic into Gemma and then becomes a part of the Tree. WTH just happened? Why does he even have to do it? If the Tree doesn't have any more magic, how can it have this power to accept his sacrifice and why is it needed? If the Tree still holds on its evil power, how does Kartik's sacrifice change anything? Doesn't it mean that the Tree will continue its evil business in the Winterlands and will eventually corrupt Kartik the same way it did Eugenia?
Read more ›
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
60 of 77 people found the following review helpful By YA Librarian on January 3, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Gemma and her friends Ann and Felicity are back in Ms. Bray's final installment of the Gemma Doyle trilogy. Gemma and Fee are waiting to enter society as women and Ann is preparing to become a nanny. The girls have much to discover, such as their desires, destines and who are their true friends and enemies.

The book is a long 800+ pages, and to be frank sometimes it felt like it. The book starts out with a lot of talk about balls and the Victorian Era. For people who want to read about the Realms and Kartik the first 200/300 pages maybe a bit tiresome. Also I felt the book could have moved a little more quickly. Around page 600 or so I found myself flipping through the pages in order to get to the good stuff.

The writing is good. The plot dragged a tad, and after much thought I agree Gemma's character didn't progress as I hoped it would.

The ending is bittersweet for Gemma and many readers are having a difficult time with this. I can understand that because when I read Little Women I was upset when Jo refused to marry Laurie. Still, the readers' passion impresses me because these are teens that care deeply for characters in a YA book series. And who says teens don't read!

Gemma's decision at the end was a bit of a shocker. I kept scratching my head thinking "where did that come from?" It made no sense and was never hinted at in the previous two books. It just seemed to happen out of the blue, which was a bit difficult to swallow.

Overall, I did enjoy the novel, but I think that Ms. Bray's characters were able to get away with far too much. Each one got what they wanted in the end, which was rather disappointing. As a person who has studied, and taught history, I thought the girls were far too modern in their beliefs.
Read more ›
19 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
The Sweet Far Thing (Gemma Doyle, Book 3)
This item: The Sweet Far Thing (Gemma Doyle, Book 3)
Price: $8.91
Ships from and sold by

Want to discover more products? Check out these pages to see more: green velvet drapes, tick tock balls, the sweet science pdf, the sweet science, the sweet far thing