A tense psychological thriller and deft character study. --The Chicago TribuneIn 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 must now endure the malice her peers heap on scholarship students and her new country's paranoia about Russian spies. With the arrival of visiting writer and fellow Russian émigré Leo Orlov--whose books Zoya has privately obsessed over for years--her luck seems poised to change, but the relationship that forms between them will put Zoya, Leo, and his calculating wife, Vera, all at risk. 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.
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