Happy Literary Friday, y'all! This week I read the first book in a brand new series by Rachel Caine (of Morganville Vampire fame). Entitled Ink and Bone, it introduces the reader to The Great Library series and a very dark world where knowledge is controlled by librarians. They rule the world.
Imagine a world where the Great Library at Alexandria was never sacked. It has thrived, and it has sister libraries throughout the world including the Bodleian Library at Oxford University. Imagine a world where individual book ownership is forbidden: People are allowed to read texts via an alchemical process instantly, but the text disappears once read. Imagine a world at war, where the rebels, or burners, attempt to overthrow the library and its power. Can you even begin to imagine such a world? Frighteningly scary, just in time for Halloween!
Jess Brightwell values knowledge and books. His affluent London family has made its fortune in the book and manuscript black market. Jess is sent to Alexandria as a postulant to train to be a librarian and his family's spy. Soon he and his classmates are sent on a dangerous quest to war-torn Oxford, England to save the rarest books from the Bodleian. But Jess and his fellow postulants are constantly threatened by the Welsh Army, burners, and high-level library scholars. When one of Jess's friends designs and builds a machine that could possibly change the world, Jess learns first-hand the ruthlessness and power of the Library.
This series will be a hit. I love how Caine has included ancient concepts and history like alchemy, automata, and Greek fire in the book. I also learned from her website that the Great Library of Alexandria often confiscated original materials from private owners and merchants. You can read all about the Great Library and other historical inspirations here.
Ink and Bone book trailer
What did YOU read this week? This is a linky!
Until next time...