Have a Gift or Promo Code? Get Started
Price:

$42.54

Get for Free with Membership

Vita Nostra

A Novel

By Sergiy Dyachenko & Sergey and Marina Dyachenko
Narrated by Jessica Ball / 18 hours 20 minutes
Bookseller Recommendation

Vita Nostra

“One part coming-of-age parable, one part psychological horror, this book combines dark fantasy with contemporary magical realism. Beautifully translated from its original Russian, Vita Nostra brilliantly explores the period in early adulthood in which we consider the price we’re willing to pay to discover our full potential and learn how we make ourselves vulnerable when we strive for outside approval.”

Bookshop Santa Cruz image Ilana, Bookshop Santa Cruz

The definitive English language translation of the internationally bestselling Russian novel—a brilliant dark fantasy with "the potential to be a modern classic" (Lev Grossman), combining psychological suspense, enchantment, and terror that makes us consider human existence in a fresh and provocative way.

Our life is brief . . .

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 has ever encountered. The books are impossible to read, the lessons obscure to the point of maddening, and the work refuses memorization. Using terror and coercion to keep the students in line, the school does not punish them for their transgressions and failures; instead, their families pay a terrible price. Yet despite her fear, Sasha undergoes changes that defy the dictates of matter and time; experiences which are nothing she has ever dreamed of . . . and suddenly all she could ever want.

A complex blend of adventure, magic, science, and philosophy that probes the mysteries of existence, filtered through a distinct Russian sensibility, this astonishing work of speculative fiction—brilliantly translated by Julia Meitov Hersey—is reminiscent of modern classics such as Lev Grossman’s The Magicians, Max Barry’s Lexicon, and Katherine Arden’s The Bear and the Nightingale, but will transport them to a place far beyond those fantastical worlds.

  Add to Your Wish List

Almost ready!

In order to save books to your Wish List you must be signed in to your account.

      Log In       Create Account
Gift

Gift Audiobook Memberships

You pick the duration—1, 3, 6, or 12 months—they pick the audiobooks. Buying gifts from your local bookstore has never been so easy.

Gift Now
 

Author &
Narrator Jessica Ball
ISBN 9780062876348
Length 18 hours 20 minutes
Language English
Publisher HarperCollins
Publication Date
Edition Unabridged
Libro.fm Rank #325 Overall
Genre Rank #31 in Fantasy
 

Share this page!

Link too long? Use a URL Shortener