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review 2017-06-10 19:07
The Burning Page by Genevieve Cogman
The Burning Page - Genevieve Cogman

"The third title in Genevieve Cogman's clever and exciting The Invisible Library series, The Burning Page is an action-packed literary adventure!

Librarian spy Irene has professional standards to maintain. Standards that absolutely do not include making hasty, unplanned escapes through a burning besieged building. But when the gateway back to your headquarters dramatically malfunctions, one must improvise. And after fleeing a version of Revolutionary France astride a dragon (also known as her assistant, Kai), Irene soon discovers she's not the only one affected. Gates back to the Library are malfunctioning across a multitude of worlds, creating general havoc. She and Kai are tasked with a mission to St Petersburg's Winter Palace, to retrieve a book which will help restore order.

However, such plans rarely survive first contact with the enemy - particularly when the enemy is the traitor Alberich. A nightmare figure bent on the Library's destruction, Alberich gives Irene a tainted 'join me or die' job offer. Meanwhile, Irene's old friend Vale has been damaged by exposure to Chaotic forces and she has no idea how to save him. When another figure from her past appears, begging for help, Irene has to take a good hard look at her priorities. And of course try to save the Library from absolute annihilation. Saving herself would be a bonus.

Irene's adventures feature stolen books, secret agents and forbidden societies - think Doctor Who but with librarian spies!

 
**********
 
I would have preferred to read book two, The Masked City before I read this book. But, it just didn't turn out that way. Did the mentioning of the events from The Masked City make me want to read that book? Oh yes, so I will definitely try to get the book one day.
 
I found this book's story just as captivating as the first book in the series The Invisible Library. All my favorite characters are back in this book Irene (of course), Kai and Vale. Vale has been to a chaotic world in the previous books and it's affecting him badly and Irene ponders over how she could help him without damaging him in any way. I have a favorite scene in this book where they are discussing his condition and, well let's say the tension rises between them. It will be interesting to see what the future has in store for them.
 
The Burning Page is a wonderful mix of adventure and humor. I love the characters, and I love the idea of an invisible library that collects books from alternative worlds. In this book, the Library is in danger from an old foe and Irene, of course, happen to cross path with this old foe and perhaps she is the one that could save the library? There is never a dull moment, it's action from the beginning until the end. And, it was with a bit of bittersweet that I came to the last page. I want more!
 
Can you read this book as a stand-alone? Well, yes, but I think reading the first book will make it easier to come to grips with the story in this book.
 
This series is fantastic, it's thrilling, humorous and adventures and I just saw that book four is going to be released in December. Can't wait to read it!
 
I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review! 
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review 2017-02-15 19:59
The Burning Page / Genevieve Cogman
The Burning Page - Genevieve Cogman

Librarian spy Irene has professional standards to maintain. Standards that absolutely do not include making hasty, unplanned escapes through a burning besieged building. But when the gateway back to your headquarters dramatically malfunctions, one must improvise. And after fleeing a version of Revolutionary France astride a dragon (also known as her assistant, Kai), Irene soon discovers she's not the only one affected. Gates back to the Library are malfunctioning across a multitude of worlds, creating general havoc. She and Kai are tasked with a mission to St Petersburg's Winter Palace, to retrieve a book which will help restore order.

However, such plans rarely survive first contact with the enemy - particularly when the enemy is the traitor Alberich. A nightmare figure bent on the Library's destruction, Alberich gives Irene a tainted 'join me or die' job offer. Meanwhile, Irene's old friend Vale has been damaged by exposure to Chaotic forces and she has no idea how to save him. When another figure from her past appears, begging for help, Irene has to take a good hard look at her priorities. And of course try to save the Library from absolute annihilation. Saving herself would be a bonus.

 

I was so frustrated with the ending of The Masked City, I could hardly wait to get my hands on this, book three of the series. The Burning Page answered the hanging questions from TMC and plunges the reader into more Library adventures with Irene and Kai.

Thankfully, this volume ends on a better note for me—the story is wrapped up, although there is definitely room for more adventures (which I shall await impatiently). This installment has fewer Fae in it (a minus for me) but gets Irene back to the fundamentals of being a Librarian, i.e. the pursuit of rare books (definitely a plus).

I love the Library’s determined neutrality—they refuse to support either the forces of Chaos or those of Order, knowing that the optimum state is a balance in between those two poles. Like real libraries do, actually, trying to support the needs of their community, no matter which political party is currently forming government, while defending free speech, free flow of information, and freedom from censorship.

I do hope that Irene and Vale manage to overcome their issues to become a couple in the next book (although if he is a Sherlock-Holmes-kind-of-guy, this may be a doomed relationship). Four books is an awful long distance to draw out the suspense of this courtship. And Kai is hinting that he’s in the running too, so will Irene have to deal with some awkward workplace romance? And will she regain her standing within the Library hierarchy, or is she doomed to probation forever? Perhaps The Lost Plot will answer some of my questions.

I’m ever so glad that I discovered this series—it is highly entertaining and I will be sad when I’ve finished reading it. Thankfully, that point seems to be some distance in the future right now, with books 4 and 5 promised, but no dates for publication yet available.

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review 2017-02-03 03:05
Invisible Library series is ridiculously fun
The Burning Page - Genevieve Cogman

My latest at B&N SciFi.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-01-29 03:48
Still enjoying
The Burning Page - Genevieve Cogman

Burning page (Invisible Library book three)

 

Never judge a book by its cover...   Due to her involvement in an unfortunate set of mishaps between the dragons and the Fae, Librarian spy Irene is stuck on probation, doing what should be simple fetch-and-retrieve projects for the mysterious Library. But trouble has a tendency to find both Irene and her apprentice, Kai—a dragon prince—and, before they know it, they are entangled in more danger than they can handle...   Irene’s longtime nemesis, Alberich, has once again been making waves across multiple worlds, and, this time, his goals are much larger than obtaining a single book or wreaking vengeance upon a single Librarian. He aims to destroy the entire Library—and make sure Irene goes down with it.   With so much at stake, Irene will need every tool at her disposal to stay alive. But even as she draws her allies close around her, the greatest danger might be lurking from somewhere close—someone she never expected to betray her...

Review:

As blurb tells you in this book Irene is initially stuck on probation imposed on her by the Library (by one of the Senior Librarians actually but this appears to be the same thing – it is book three and I still have no idea if Library as an institution has some sort of intelligence or people acting in Library’s name pretty much means that these people ARE Library). What this means is that she and Kai get the suckiest /most dangerous jobs for several months. Have I mentioned how happy I was that Kai was with Irene instead of being tortured the whole second book? I guess I really like him as a character.

This book is just as action packed as others. Very early in the book Irene realizes that something is wrong with the Library because she and Kai are having a lot of trouble trying to get back to the Library after another one of their assignments, because somebody is blocking the entrance points between this world (and as it turns out from other alternate worlds as well) to the Library.

Eventually they make it back to the Library and learn that the whole Library is under attack. Alberich is back and as we know he showed himself to be a very dangerous and evil adversary and somebody whose knowledge and skill outmatch Irene’s a great deal from the book one.

After attending the emergency meeting of the Librarians Irene and Kai have to attempt another dangerous assignment and they now know for sure that while Alberich is happy to destroy the whole Library he is also specifically targeting Irene because of what he thinks she may have learned from the certain book she had in her hands in book one. Basically Alberich thinks that Irene learned certain thing about his past which he himself really wants to know as well. Irene does not possess this knowledge, but she also realizes that if she were to insist on that Alberich is not likely to believe her.

Irene and Kai are reluctant to leave their friend inspector Vale alone while they go on assignment because after rushing to help Irene to save Kai in the book two he is not in the best shape – there is a reason why the worlds where Chaos is strong are dangerous for humans and Vale is struggling to overcome his chaos contamination. Irene and Kai however do not have much choice and they have to go, one of her Librarian colleagues promises to visit Vale and there are other people who supposedly will keep an eye on him.

I am not going to tell you how Irene and Kai’s assignment plays out, but I do not think it is a spoiler to tell you that in this book Irene has another confrontation with Alberich. I really like that it was made very clear in the first book that Irene is no match to him skills wise and Irene was and is afraid of him after what he did to her in book one, but she is still trying to hold her ground and fight him.

I heard but I am not sure about this – supposedly five books are planned in these series. I think the story could easily end after the third book though – except the hints of romantic attraction between Irene and Kai and Irene and Vale which did not go anywhere, the story seemed quite complete to me.

I will be honest, even though I am still happy that Irene takes her role of Kai’s mentor seriously and does not sleep with him for that reason, I am at the point where I would not mind a secondary romance storyline if the future books in the series were to appear. Although considering that there were clear mentions that Irene is attracted to Vale as well, I think I would be okay with the book without romance – yes I hate love triangles very much. The above comment was just expressing personal preferences not a critique of any kind especially since as of now the book does not have a romance of any kind.

As an aside, I was very happy that the author did not abandon the humorous touches in the narrative. All of the books have some extras – instructions to the librarians, some extra trivia about this universe, and this is part of the instructions to the librarians in this part.

"We also wish to make it absolutely clear that Librarians should not attempt to use the Library to transport dinosaur eggs. And if they do disregard this rule, under no circumstances should they draw official in-world attention while doing so. In fact, we wish to remind all Librarians that they are here to collect books, not dinosaurs. Those Librarians who have problems distinguishing between the two should take a refresher course in Library basics."

Grade B.

 

 

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review 2017-01-07 00:00
The Burning Page
The Burning Page - Genevieve Cogman This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life.

This was a great book! The whole series has been wonderful so far. Librarian spies, dragons, and alternate worlds are just some of the things that make this series great. This book gave me exactly what I have come to expect from this series. There was so much going on and I couldn't wait to see how things would turn out.

This book starts shortly after the events of the previous book. The action starts right away and I knew that this story would be a lot of fun to read. Irene and Kai are in trouble again and things look pretty serious. The library is in danger and a lot of that danger seems to be aimed directly at Irene. To make matters worse, someone is trying to kill Irene and Vale is in danger of losing his mind. There is no shortage of excitement in this book but there is an equal amount of smart problem solving that adds a nice element.

I love the characters in this series. Irene is smart and isn't afraid to make decisions. She is tough and can quickly analyze a situation to figure out the best option to achieve her goals. Kai is amazing. I mean he is a dragon so of course he is amazing just because of that. He doesn't hesitate to follow Irene's lead. He is highly competent and sometimes add the key piece to their plans. Each of the characters in this series are well developed and quite colorful.

The world building in this series continues to be top notch. We get to see some parts of the reality that Irene and Kai spend most of there time in that we haven't had a chance to see before. We also get a chance to see how some of these realities are connected in a way that I had never imagined. One of the best things about this series is that every time Irene and Kai go on a new assignment, we get a chance to see a unique world.

I would highly recommend this book to others. This is the third book in The Invisible Library series and I do recommend that this series be read in order. This book does have its own plot but so much is built upon events from the earlier books that I think readers new to the series will be at a disadvantage if they haven't read the earlier books. I can't wait to see what happens to Irene and Kai next!

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Berkley Publishing Group via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
This one was pretty exciting with a few new developments. There are definitely a few questions that remain unanswered so I am looking forward to more in this series.
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