My rating: 4 of 5 stars
4 seductive stars To Invitation to a Bonfire! ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
This book was highly recommended by my friend, Elyse! Thanks for another intriguing read!
Zoya Andropova is a refugee of the Soviet Union who has enrolled in an all-girls boarding school in New Jersey. It’s the 1920s, and she has lost everything, including her family. Zoya’s journey is relatable in that she wants nothing more than to fit in like any teenager, but being a Soviet refugee during this time of extreme paranoia to outsiders proves to be a heartbreaking burden she cannot lift.
Zoya takes an interest in a visiting writer and fellow Russian emigre, Lev Orlov. Actually, Zoya has long been obsessed with the books by this famous author, and she seeks him out as a savior of sorts.
Lev is already married to Vera, and a love triangle is set-up, complicated by the fact that Lev is both devoted to his art and to Vera. She is his anchor, a cold and calculating anchor at that, and runs every aspect of their lives. What happens to Zoya, Leo, and Vera is a tangled mystery.
Adrienne Celt’s writing is artistic and exciting. This is a mysterious thriller that has a slow build. I found the structure interesting; comprised of letters, diary entries, and transcripts.
Just who is the master of Zoya, Lev, and Vera’s fates?
Thank you to Adrienne Celt, Bloomsbury USA, and Netgalley for the ARC. Invitation to a Bonfire will e available on June 5, 2018.
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The seductive story of a dangerous love triangle, inspired by the infamous Nabokov marriage, with a spellbinding psychological thriller at its core.
In the 1920s, Zoya Andropova, a young refugee from the Soviet Union, finds herself in the alien landscape of an elite all-girls New Jersey boarding school. Having lost her family, her home, and her sense of purpose, Zoya struggles to belong, a task made more difficult by the malice her peers heap on scholarship students and her new country’s paranoia about Russian spies. When she meets the visiting writer and fellow Russian émigré Leo Orlov—whose books Zoya has privately obsessed over for years—her luck seems to have taken a turn for the better. But she soon discovers that Leo is not the solution to her loneliness: he’s committed to his art and bound by the sinister orchestrations of his brilliant wife, Vera.
As the reader unravels the mystery of Zoya, Lev, and Vera’s fate, Zoya is faced with mounting pressure to figure out who she is and what kind of life she wants to build. Grappling with class distinctions, national allegiance, and ethical fidelity—not to mention the powerful magnetism of sex—Invitation to a Bonfire investigates how one’s identity is formed, irrevocably, through a series of momentary decisions, including how to survive, who to love, and whether to pay the complicated price of happiness.