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The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman
Book Name: The Invisible Library
Author: Genevieve Cogman
Publisher(s): Roc (US) Pan (UK)
Formatt: Paperback / Audiobook / Ebook
Genre(s): Fantasy / Steampunk
Release Date: June 14, 2016 (US) January 15, 2015 (UK)

My first impression after reading the title was, “Will I turn invisible once I enter? Can no one find me?” A place where I can read, undisturbed and uninterrupted? Sign me up ASAP!

But alas, it was not to be, for me at least. If you’re a Librarian, however, worlds are at your fingertips. You go on assignments in various alternate worlds to find rare books to add to the Library’s collection for safe keeping (feel free to overlook the larceny aspect). If you’re lucky, you might fly in an airship, fight off cyborg alligators, and call upon a dragon for aid. Plus, you also have the magic of the Library at your disposal through speaking in the Library’s secret Language.

Since I can only live vicariously through the characters, reading The Invisible Library had to suffice. And a delightful read it was. The author has a frank but humorous tone of voice through the main character of Irene that will have you chuckling out loud. She also has an apparent fondness for Canada/Canadians that is quite endearing. Her mentee, Kai, turns out to be a surprisingly helpful ally. And then there is the Sherlock Holmes-like detective, Vale (think Robert Downey Jr. – someone PLEASE make this into a movie and cast him in it!). Throw in a Fae, werewolves, a river spirit, plus a diabolical, hundreds-of-years-old enemy who can skin you (intact) and distort reality, and here is a story that begs to be read.

The particular book in this mission is not only rare, but also holds an age-old secret. It calls into question the reason behind the Library’s existence. In the pursuit of this book, Irene finds herself re-examining her superiors’ motives and her belief in the Library’s purpose.

In short, if you love books, libraries, steampunk adventures, humorous storytelling, and well-crafted characters, read this book. Even if you don’t particularly care for all of the above, read it anyway. You might be pleasantly surprised. I certainly was, even if I never got to find my own invisible library to hide in.


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