Thursday, March 31, 2016

#ThrowbackThursday: Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine + Giveaway

#TBT Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

In honor of the paperback of Ink and Bone releasing next week on April 5,
and in anticipation of the sequel Paper and Fire releasing this summer on July 5, 
I am reposting my Ink and Bone review and adding a giveaway!

Ink and Bone 
by Rachel Caine
Read: June 25 - July 5, 2015
Published:  July 7, 2015 by NAL
Source: Netgalley (Thank you Penguin!)

Series: The Great Library #1
Category: YA, fantasy, libraries, alchemy 

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 his friend 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.…

I love libraries - what reader doesn't? - and I was fascinated by the setup of a story where it is a Library that runs the world instead of governments and politics. Especially, the legendary Great Library of Alexandria, which has survived in Ink and Bone's version of the world, and then proceeded to spread it's influence everywhere. This setting is richly developed and this story engaging. But there is also a darker, frightening aspect to the Library that increased the tension. The stakes are high and narrator Jess learns that the danger to him and his fellow students is very real. 

Jess Brightwell's family are book smugglers, a highly illegal and highly secretive black market trade in a world controlled by a master Library. It has not been easy for Jess to grow up in the business - or as his father's son, though it has put him in contact with rare original copies of books that he has learned to treasure. When Jess's father sends him to train for the Great Library's service - as a spy for the family - Jess is thrilled to escape his family (at least immediately) and get closer to this organization and especially the books. But working for the Library is not what Jess anticipated and he learns that those who control it will do anything to keep a hold of the knowledge and power they've obtained.    

I became quite attached to Jess throughout this story. He goes from a difficult home life to a difficult school life without much of a break, and there was a strong undercurrent of danger that followed him through these pages. But he does grow up, experience love and make some great friends and allies along the way. I enjoyed Jess's companions in this story so much - especially the different relationships between him and Khalia, Thomas, Morgan and Dario. Jess has a twin named Brendan, who plays a minor roll in this story that I'm hoping is going to grow in future books. Brendan and Jess have an interesting dynamic and seeing that explored further is one of the elements I'm most looking forward going forward.  

This story has a romance that is slow and sweet, but also fraught with tension that makes it even stronger. It doesn't begin until partway into the story, but I was very excited when it did - and also whom it was with. I'm very anxious to see more if it, and I think it will play an important part of the next installment. So far there are zero love triangles, and I don't anticipate there being any (crosses fingers)!!

Obscurists and alchemy are a key aspect of how the Library keeps their control. However, I never really grasped alchemy as it is in this book. Or rather, to me it seemed like it was basically magic created through energy and mathematical formulas. Maybe that's the point? But I don't understand why some people are Obscurists and other's aren't. I'm curious to learn more about this part of the Library in the future, and I have a good feeling we will.

I wouldn't consider the end of Ink and Bone to be a traditional cliffhanger, in that no one is in immediate danger and this section of the tale completes itself. However, all of the characters are in danger in the future. Let's just say the terror alert level is High, though no one knows when the threat will strike next. The story also sets up situations for future books, and left a bit anxious. Though I should have expected it, because endings like this are par-for-the-course in series these days. 

In conclusion, I definitely recommend Ink and Bone. Jess's world with the Great Library at the center of it was richly developed and this story engaging and fascinating, but also eerie and frightening. I can't wait to find out what's next for Jess and his friends. 

Love Triangle Factor: None 

Cliffhanger Scale: Low/Medium 



Giveaway is for US residents only (Sorry, international readers!)
You must be at least 13 years old to enter
See my policies HERE

Thank you, for this giveaway Penguin! 


  1. Ink and bone sounds exciting and mysterious ♡ Looking forward to reading this book. Thank you

  2. I am excited for this book because who doesn't love a book that is about books?!

  3. I haven't read this one and I'm really looking forward to it!

  4. I cannot WAIT to read Paper and Fire! I thought Ink and Bone was an incredible story (and I need MORE!). It was my first Rachel Caine book! I'm glad I started with a good one. :D

    Sidenote -- this isn't published via Penguin Teen! NAL (as well as Berkley, ACE/ROC, etc.) are all adult imprints of Penguin Random House. This isn't a Penguin Teen one!

    Fantastic post, Lauren. :)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    1. AH! I was wondering about that. Thanks for the info. I removed it from the form.

  5. I really loved the mystery and that we got to "see" what the library in Alexandria might have looked like. I'm looking forward to Paper and Fire!

  6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  8. I am interested in finding out about the Library's service. It all sounds fascinating. Thanks for having the giveaway.

  9. Yay for sharing about this book again Lauren :D Stunning post, as always. <3 And as always, your review is stunning :) But ugh. You are sort of making me want to read this book, lol :D I shall wait for the sequel, and see what everyone thinks of it :) I hope you will love it lots. <3

  10. I love the idea of this book and the fact that it centers on the Great Library of Alexandria

  11. I LOVED the Morganville Vamps! Def want to read anything Rachel Caine writes!
    Samantha D

  12. So I haven't read this yet, but the fact that it revolves around the love and want of books so much, really puts it at the top of my tbr list. Not to mention that I heard the supporting characters are great.

  13. Thanks for hosting! I am really looking forward to reading this :D


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...