book reviews by Althea

The Invisible Library – Genevieve Cogman ***

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The Invisible Library
The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

‘The Invisible Library’ feels like the author made a conscious effort to Include All The Cool Things. Starting with, of course, a secret extra-dimensional library with All The Books, connecting parallel universes, and librarians who are secret agents traversing these worlds in search of rare manuscripts. I mean, would it be POSSIBLE to write a book with that concept and have it be a bad book? I’m not sure, but it would be Very, Very, Difficult. This is absolutely a very enjoyable book.

Cool as a library with All The Books might be, this particular library is not quite as high-principled as it at first might seem. In particular, their acquisitions policy is a bit suspect. If they can’t beg, buy or borrow, they’re not above stealing. And that’s pretty much junior librarian Irene’s mission: get a certain book (a collection of fairytales) at any cost. To accompany her, she’s assigned a new trainee, a young man called Kai. Together, they’re sent into a steampunk-style world to track down the book. It soon becomes clear that this mission is a bit out of the ordinary, when people start turning up dead and it seems that the Library’s treasonous arch-nemesis is involved – as well as some plain old jealousy and ‘office politics.’ Why on earth were two such junior Librarians assigned to this hazardous mission?

Part detective story, part adventure-fantasy, the hijinks that ensue are good fun. I’ve already got the sequel in the YA series queued up to read.

Many thanks to Roc and Netgalley for the copy of the book. As always, my opinions are solely my own.
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