Author: Rachel Caine
Series: The Great Library (Book 2)
Publication: NAL (July 5, 2016)
Description: In Ink and Bone, New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine introduced a world where knowledge is power, and power corrupts absolutely. Now, she continues the story of those who dare to defy the Great Library—and rewrite history...
With an iron fist, The Great Library controls the knowledge of the world, ruthlessly stamping out all rebellion, forbidding the personal ownership of books in the name of the greater good.
Jess Brightwell has survived his introduction to the sinister, seductive world of the Library, but serving in its army is nothing like he envisioned. His life and the lives of those he cares for have been altered forever. His best friend is lost, and Morgan, the girl he loves, is locked away in the Iron Tower and doomed to a life apart.
Embarking on a mission to save one of their own, Jess and his band of allies make one wrong move and suddenly find themselves hunted by the Library’s deadly automata and forced to flee Alexandria, all the way to London.
But Jess’s home isn't safe anymore. The Welsh army is coming, London is burning, and soon, Jess must choose between his friends, his family, or the Library willing to sacrifice anything and anyone in the search for ultimate control...
My Thoughts: This is the second book in the series that began with PAPER AND INK. In this one the young students at the Library of Alexandria have been separated. Glain and Jess are in the guards, Morgan has been outed as an obscurist and imprisoned in the Iron Tower for life, Dario and Khalili are beginning their careers as scholars. And Thomas is presumed dead.
The main thrust of this story is finding Thomas and rescuing him from his imprisonment by the Library. Along the way they discover more of the evil that the Library does. What is most fascinating to me about this series is the way that the library, which was designed to preserve knowledge, has become a very powerful agency that stifles and controls knowledge. Both Thomas and the young people's mentor Wolfe were in major trouble with the Library because each independently invented movable type.
I enjoy the steampunk aspects of this world with creatures that combine mechanics with magic. I also enjoy the science fiction aspects with the transporter similar to the ones in Star Trek but powered by magic.
The only thing that I didn't enjoy about this story, which was filled with action, adventure, and all sorts of moral decisions, was that it is the middle book in a trilogy and I am left waiting for answers until the third book is released.
The terrible truth was the the Library still was all those things. It was a force for good; it did protect what would otherwise have been lost in wars and chaos and disasters. It did encourage scholarship and knowledge across the world, across religious and national lines. It did set knowledge and learning in a place of honor above all other considerations. It was just how it went about it that turned his stomach and made it all wrong.I got this ARC from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.