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The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic by Emily Croy Barker

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

To say anything more than the blurb does about this literally enchanting book would be to do you and it a disservice. The world that Nora stumbles into is indeed magical and the ways that it and our world cross believable enough. Nora herself can be a little irritating and how you feel about her will hugely effect your enjoyment of the book as to whether you care or not if she finds her way out but either way it should certainly keep you gripped to the very end.

If you like Emily Croy Barker you might also like to read books by Helene Wecker, Sarah Addison Allen and Deborah Harkness.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst


The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic by Emily Croy Barker

The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic is a sparkling romantic adventure. When Nora Fischer stumbles, quite literally, into a magical world where everyone is glamorous and life is one long party, she's immediately captivated. What she doesn't realise, because everything is such fun, is that there's a darker side to her new friends. In fact, it's only after she agrees to marry the charismatic, masterful Raclin that she discovers she's a prisoner in this new world. If Nora is to escape, then she has just one hope: the magician Aruendiel. And if she can also persuade him to teach her the art of real magic, then she might just be able to return home. Is that what she wants, though? Aruendiel has a biting tongue, a shrouded past and no patience, so there's no way Nora could be falling for him...Is there? A dark fantasy fairy tale ideal for fans of Twilight, The Time Traveller's Wife and Stardust, The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic is the magical adventure of the year. A graduate of Harvard University, Emily Croy Barker has been a magazine journalist for more than 20 years. She is currently executive editor at The American Lawyer magazine. The Thinking Woman's Real Guide to Magic is her first novel.


A marvellous plot, clever dialogue, and complex characters distinguish The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic. With the intimacy of a classic fairy-tale and the rollicking elements of modern epic fantasy, Emily Croy Barker's delightful debut will sweep readers into another world. Fun, seductive, and utterly engrossing, this wonderful tale of magic and adventure is a perfect escape from humdrum reality - Deborah Harkness, bestselling author of A Discovery of Witches

To read The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic is to enter a lush, fantastical dream filled with beauty and strangeness, love and cruelty, playfulness and gravitas. Emily Croy Barker has crafted a wholly imaginative and witty debut novel that is unlike any I've read - Sara Gruen, author of Water For Elephants

About the Author

Emily Croy Barker spent almost twenty years as a journalist. A graduate of Harvard University, she is currently the executive editor at The American Lawyer magazine, where she oversees international coverage. She lives in New Jersey. The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic is her first novel.

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Book Info

Publication date

31st July 2014


Emily Croy Barker

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Penguin Books Ltd


576 pages


Literary Fiction
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



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