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review 2017-02-19 08:07
The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman
The Invisible Library - Genevieve Cogman

The first installment of an adventure featuring stolen books, secret agents and forbidden societies - think Doctor Who with librarian spies!

Irene must be at the top of her game or she'll be off the case - permanently...

Irene is a professional spy for the mysterious Library, which harvests fiction from different realities. And along with her enigmatic assistant Kai, she's posted to an alternative London. Their mission - to retrieve a dangerous book. But when they arrive, it's already been stolen. London's underground factions seem prepared to fight to the very death to find her book.

Adding to the jeopardy, this world is chaos-infested - the laws of nature bent to allow supernatural creatures and unpredictable magic. Irene's new assistant is also hiding secrets of his own.

Soon, she's up to her eyebrows in a heady mix of danger, clues and secret societies. Yet failure is not an option - the nature of reality itself is at stake.

**********


THE INVISIBLE LIBRARY is a book that I've been curious to read for a while now and I was quite happy when I got the chance to read it. I mean how can you not, if you are a bookworm, find the description of the book tantalizing? A Library that collects fiction from different realities. The book is intriguing right from the start as we get to know Irene who is on a mission to retrieve or rather steal a book. Finding rare books is what Irene and others that work for the Library do, they blend in and steal books and especially rare books that only exist in one reality or differ in another reality.

 
READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW OVER AT FRESH FICTION!
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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 2017-01-11 10:36
The Invisible Library
The Invisible Library - Genevieve Cogman

Well, that was fun.  The closest I can come is a combination of Thursday Next and Atticus O'Sullivan, or maybe Kate Daniels, with a touch of Harry Potter.  I was unsure about the story until the scene with the carriage and the Thames; after that I was invested.  Intrigued, and after finishing I'm definitely interested in more.

 

This is the author's first novel and I can see an attempt at humour that I don't think she quite mastered, and perhaps the story might have been a bit tighter overall, but ultimately it was a strong first go.  I look forward to reading the next one.

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review 2016-12-12 20:19
The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman
The Invisible Library - Genevieve Cogman

I have to admit that I tend towards books that are on the intense and emotion-heavy side, especially with speculative fiction. So it’s fun to every so often read a lighter book. The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman is a great one to turn to in those moods. It’s a light and fun fantasy, with some cool worldbuilding and interesting mystery elements. It’s also Cogman’s debut, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the series.

The Invisible Library is narrated by Irene, an agent of the Library, which collects fictions from across different realities and worlds. I liked Irene a lot–she’s capable and has a lot of strength and knowledge. In some ways, she’s not very confident, but these mostly stem from the hierarchies and politics of the Library itself, rather than internal doubts.

I also enjoyed the central conceit of the story, and I thought Cogman did a nice job of making it internally consistent. While the Library bears basically no resemblance to the living, breathing libraries I’ve worked in, Cogman also generally avoids being precious about the sacred value of learning. (Public libraries in particular are weird and wonderful places that aren’t exactly sacred sanctums of Knowledge.)

I thought the mystery element was pretty well played out–it can be tricky to balance a mystery when there are lots of extra fantastical bits going on at the same time. There were a couple of moments that were genuinely horrifying, although they never overwhelmed the overall tone of the book. I certainly didn’t guess the ending, and I thought the book did a good job of showing Irene and Kai as competent without being superhuman.

I’ll also note that the main Inspector in the alternate world is Indian. Irene herself seems to be canonically bisexual (although that term is never used); she’s been romantically interested in women in the past, but describes her type as dark and dangerous, and seems into at least one male character. I can’t say whether those representations are done well–there was one moment I have some questions about.

Some books end with everything neatly wrapped up and resolved. Others end with things mostly resolved. And still others end with new revelations and questions. The Invisible Library is definitely in the third category, which unfortunately is my least favorite of the three. However, I do genuinely want to know how it will play out. To the extent this works for me, it’s because the set up had been becoming more complicated throughout the whole book, rather than having a Surprise!Info dump ending.

All in all, despite a few minor quibbles, this was a really enjoyable fantasy, with some cool elements and nice characters. I’ll definitely be looking forward to reading the next one.

Source: bysinginglight.wordpress.com/2016/08/19/the-invisible-library-by-genevieve-cogman
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text 2016-12-08 06:55
Book Haul - and something to share with BrokenTune
Bookshops - Peter Bush,Jorge Carrión
The Haunted Grange Of Goresthorpe - Arthur Conan Doyle
Spit and Polish - Lucy Lethbridge
Darjeeling: A History of the World's Greatest Tea - Jeff Koehler
The Invisible Library - Genevieve Cogman
Lady Cop Makes Trouble - Amy Stewart
The White Cottage Mystery - Margery Allingham
What A Plant Knows: a field guide to the senses - Daniel Chamovitz
Turbo Twenty-Three - Janet Evanovich
Better Late Than Never - Jenn McKinlay

Buying other people books as Christmas presents is just dangerous.  Especially when local publishers have 45% off sales.  Apparently a book reading slump does not translate into a book buying slump.

 

So these all arrived in the mail this week.  I'm particularly excited about The Haunted Grange Of Goresthorpe by Arthur Conan Doyle  and Bookshops by Jorge Carrión; translated by Peter Bush.  Oh, and Lady Cop Makes Trouble by Amy Stewart!

 

I also bought one more book - it's not up on top because it's a book I already have, and a small splurge, but I think at least BrokenTune, if nobody else, will understand why.  I bought an uncorrected bound proof of The Eyre Affair.  Not because of the book itself, but because of what came with it:

 

 

It's a black and white photo that Jasper Fforde did in a giveaway at some point, 105 of them in total given away.  (http://www.jasperfforde.com/giveaway/tea002.html if anyone is curious).  The book was less than a new paperback edition and I couldn't resist - I love Pickwick!

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