Book Review: Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

Book Review: Ink and Bone by Rachel CaineInk and Bone by Rachel Caine
Series: The Great Library #1
Published by NAL on July 7, 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 368
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
5 Stars
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 he 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.…

Book Review:

INK AND BONE is one of those books I always wanted, but I never knew it until I read it. There are so many good ideas and it’s such a great story that I’m still thinking about INK AND BONE a month after finishing it. With the amount of books I read, about 20 per month, it’s rare that a book sticks with me.

Jess lives in a world where owning personal copies of books is illegal. The Great Library has survived since the days of Alexandria and now exists in every city. The Library controls access to book and knowledge, functioning with as much power as a country. Jess’s family makes a living selling books on the black market, and seeing an opportunity, his father sends him to the Library, with the intent of having a spy on the inside.

But joining the Library isn’t that easy. There are 32 postulants and 6 available spots. The competition is fierce and dangerous. Jess must navigate a murky world, one where disagreeing with the Library’s policies and politics can be deadly. For example, when Jess is in the middle of a war zone, he could call on his family connections to survive, but doing so would expose his book smuggling background. What to do?

Imagine the greatest texts of the world surviving through the centuries thanks to the Library. But at the same time, imagine the same Library controlling which of those texts the public can see. Imagine a world where you can’t own your own books. It’s every book lover’s nightmare, right?

Rachel Caine explores those ideas and others in INK AND BONE. It’s a very thinky book, but enjoyably so. Jess’s time as a postulant for the Library is the best sort of dangerous adventure, one that’s fun to read but left me thinking. I cannot wait to return to the world the author’s created — bring on the next book!

Let’s talk about it:

What would you do if you lived in a world where you couldn’t own books?

Socialize with the author:

Rachel Caine:

– leeanna

5 thoughts on “Book Review: Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

  1. Leanna, you had me at “Library” LOL I absolutely enjoyed your review of Ink & Bone and I have read books by Rachel Caine before so I’m definitely going to check this out.

    Btw you mentioned in your review that a book rarely sticks with you as you read nearly 20 per month, do you re-read books when the consecutive book to a series is released? For example if book 2 to this series is released and you are about to read it, will you re-read book 1 before reading book 2?

    I found you through #ABEA but I’m a new follower :)

    • INK AND BONE was actually my first Rachel Caine book, but it won’t be my last. I do think it’s a bit more serious than her Morganville Vamps, but I’d definitely check it out if you’re a fan of her. There are some really cool ideas.

      As for re-reading, it depends. I do like to reread, and I used to try and refresh myself on a series before reviewing/reading a new release. But I don’t always have the time, so I guess it depends on mood, IE, if I really want to return to that world/characters. It’s random!

      BTW, I don’t know about the comment thing. I’ve never had anyone ask before, sorry.

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