Ink and Bone (The Great Library #1)
Author: Rachel Caine
Publication: July 7th, 2015
Format: e-ARC, 352 pages
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Dystopian, Steampunk
Read: June 2016
I received an e-ARC of this book from Penguin and Berkeley, NAL via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
In an exhilarating new series, New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine rewrites history, creating a dangerous world where the Great Library of Alexandria has survived the test of time.…
Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the Library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly—but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden.
Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family, who are involved in the thriving black market. Jess has been sent to be his family’s spy, but his loyalties are tested in the final months of his training to enter the Library’s service.
When his friend inadvertently commits heresy by creating a device that could change the world, Jess discovers that those who control the Great Library believe that knowledge is more valuable than any human life—and soon both heretics and books will burn…
Plot – 4 out of 5 stars
I didn’t know what I was expecting from this story, besides a book about books, but it’s so much more than that. It’s really intriguing and the author shows a lot of creativity when it comes to the world building and how the world is. It immediately pulled me in and kept my interest the entire way. This book was very fast paced and included alchemy, adventure, war and conspiracies. It’s super intricate and there are some amazing themes.
Writing Style – 4 out of 5 stars
I quite liked this author’s writing style. It’s simple yet intriguing. At the beginning, the world building was rocky but slowly became more inclusive and easier to understand. The writing style has intricate and beautiful moments yet is still easy to read. However, I think most of the book was used to set up the background information and set up for future books.
Characters – 3 out of 5 stars
This is where the book fell a little bit for me. I enjoyed the side characters a lot more than I did our main character Jess. He felt very flat and uninterested to me even though he was the one narrating the entire story. He’s very serious and intense. He’s grown up being taken advantage of so he’s used to being distrustful. I felt him to be sincere and dedicated but at the same time, he has a tendency to be selfish. He’s kind of an inconsistent character, I never really felt a connection with him and he seemed unsure about everything that was happening around him. He couldn’t really decide what he wanted to do or think or want. It was really frustrating. However, I felt like the side characters had a lot more personality and were a lot easier to connect to. There’s quite a few of them but my particular favorites were Morgan, Thomas and Khalila. The great part about them beside their distinct personalities and attitudes is that they all come from different places around the world which adds diversity to the cast.
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