The Burning Page (The Invisible Library Series) by Genevieve Cogman
|The Burning Page (The Invisible Library Series) by Genevieve Cogman|
|Reviewer: Linda Lawlor|
|Summary: This one will keep you on the edge of your seat right until the final pages. A deadly and practically all-powerful nemesis who can pursue you through alternate worlds. The fate of not just one universe, but all of them at once in your hands. And, maybe, worst of all, the difficulty of telling who is actually a friend, and who a foe . . . seriously gripping.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 400||Date: December 2016|
|External links: Author's website|
Think Indiana Jones, Robert Langdon or Jack West, with a sprinkle of the panache of James Bond and Raffles. Educated and courageous folk who risk all to obtain that magical talisman, that precious statue, that ancient scroll, and, now and then, to save the free world in the process. Place such a person in a multi-universe where on every world the same struggle is being played out: the dragons, who stand for order and control, oppose the Fae, who desire chaos and drama. And then turn your hero or heroine into a . . . librarian. Huh? Does not compute!
But wait a sec. At the centre of all these worlds and connected to them by any room with a generous supply of books lies The Library, a mysterious and sometimes frustratingly nebulous place. It is an impartial observer in the wars, but strives to maintain a certain level of balance and retain links with each world by collecting and storing copies of their rarest books. And, to be quite frank, it isn't too troubled about just how those books are obtained. These librarians are more likely to rob you than tell you to lower your voice or wipe your feet: they are skilled in languages, housebreaking, martial arts and some forms of magic. They are sworn to serve The Library for life and above all else, their vow branded across their backs, and to serve its ends they are capable of being single-mindedly ruthless. Not exactly the kind of person you'd want to encounter with an overdue book in your bag.
In the first two books in this splendid series (The Invisible Library and The Masked City) we met Irene and her trainee librarian Kai (who also happens to be a dragon princeling). She has already clashed with all manner of colourful enemies (and a few of those who should by rights be her friends), but now the stakes are far greater than a lost book or two and a few deaths. Alberich, renegade librarian, plans to destroy The Library itself, and he has absorbed enough Fae magic to make it possible. The battle is on to thwart his plans, culminating in a thrilling and desperate battle for the safety of everyone and everything Irene holds dear.
This excellent series has traces of the satire of Terry Pratchett, the breadth of imagination of Jasper Fforde, and the wonderful ability of Neil Gaiman to mix reality and fantasy in one satisfying whole, but make no mistake: it feels in all senses original and engrossing. It manages, despite the high stakes, to be occasionally humorous (the waspish asides included in Library briefing papers are especially amusing) and readers will be glad to know that although this adventure is satisfactorily resolved Irene and Kai will soon be book-hunting again in a fourth instalment. In the meantime, we can thoroughly recommend Making Money by Terry Pratchett, Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde - not to mention his whole Thursday Next series – and M is for Magic by Neil Gaiman.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Burning Page (The Invisible Library Series) by Genevieve Cogman at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy The Burning Page (The Invisible Library Series) by Genevieve Cogman at Amazon.com.
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