Collecting books can be a dangerous prospect in this fun, time-traveling, fantasy adventure from a spectacular debut author.
One thing any Librarian will tell you: the truth is much stranger than fiction…
Irene is a professional spy for the mysterious Library, a shadowy organization that collects important works of fiction from all of the different realities. Most recently, she and her enigmatic assistant Kai have been sent to an alternative London. Their mission: Retrieve a particularly dangerous book. The problem: By the time they arrive, it’s already been stolen.
London’s underground factions are prepared to fight to the death to find the tome before Irene and Kai do, a problem compounded by the fact that this world is chaos-infested—the laws of nature bent to allow supernatural creatures and unpredictable magic to run rampant. To make matters worse, Kai is hiding something—secrets that could be just as volatile as the chaos-filled world itself.
Now Irene is caught in a puzzling web of deadly danger, conflicting clues, and sinister secret societies. And failure is not an option—because it isn’t just Irene’s reputation at stake, it’s the nature of reality itself…
FEATURING BONUS MATERIAL: including an interview with the author, a legend from the Library, and more!
From the Trade Paperback edition
I received this book from the publisher on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Irene is a Librarian. Sounds simple enough, except that it’s not. Irene works for, lives in and serves The Invisible Library. Her whole life is dedicated to the saving of books that will otherwise be lost to the world. The Library’s purpose is to preserve books and Librarians will do anything and everything it takes to get those books.
As a bibliophile, this book screamed out to me. The title for one, as well as the synopsis. Irene, being a spy, has to go on covert missions in order to retrieve books and bring them back to the Library. As explained in the book, there are different editions of a book (this we know) and sometimes the author adds/removes things that could possibly change the story. Sometimes, they [the Librarians] attempt to get the original work because maybe parts were removed upon editing before publication. I found this very interesting because in this case, it was a justification of owning multiple copies of one book. Not that any justification is actually needed. One thing that caught my eye though is even though The Invisible Library is in fact a library, one cannot ever remove books from it.
Characters: Irene was an amazing character that I thought was strong and could manage on her own but knew when to ask for help. She was a bit slow at times but caught up pretty quickly.
Kai was a good judge of character for the most part…but he was untrusting. He had his reasons and was extremely loyal (no spoilers here).
Bradamant was a bit of a back stabber but what’s a MC without someone fighting against them? More like friendly-ish competition.
Vale/Singh: a detective and police officer respectively. Singh’s dislike of fae clouded his judgement and Vale was too curious for my liking. Ever heard of the term ‘curiosity killed the cat’?
Alberich was the bad guy. He was extremely creepy but seems to have a bigger story behind him.
“We want books. We love books. We live with books.”
Likes: I liked the concept of this book. I’m a bookworm so books about books make me really happy.
Dislikes: There were parts where a conclusion would already be made and once it was revealed to be true, Irene would act as if it was the first time she’d heard of it. So that was a bit confusing.
Overall Thoughts: There seemed to be too many characters in this book but because they hardly overlapped each other, it worked out. I think it’s the fact that everyone was after the same thing that it didn’t confuse things. I was expecting a spy/espionage book and this was more of a crime/detective novel. I did like the concept, as I’ve said, and felt like I could relate with wanting to be around books all the time.
Read: 6 June 2016
Publication Date: 14 June 2016
Link to Author’s Goodreads Page: Genevieve Cogman