Friday, 6 January 2017

Paper and Fire / Rachel Caine

4 out of 5 stars
With an iron fist, the Great Library controls the knowledge of the world, ruthlessly stamping out all rebellion and, in the name of the greater good, forbidding the personal ownership of books.

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, doomed to a life apart from everything she knows.

After 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, and the Library, which is willing to sacrifice anything and anyone in the search for ultimate control…

 Not surprisingly, the second book of The Great Library series is slightly less awesome than the first book. But having said that, the first was so overwhelming—that’s a difficult standard to maintain.

However, Caine keeps the Library overbearing, uncaring, and brutal, exactly what it needs to be in this dystopian world. Even those that should be trustworthy are sometimes traitorous and support comes from unexpected quarters. Difficult choices must be made—who to save, who to leave behind, who to forgive, who to forget. We get a glimpse into the Iron Tower, into the Black Archives, into the human condition.

The writing continues to impress me. The characters continue to fascinate me. The plot draws me onwards, making me wish that book three (Ash and Quill) was going to be available before July 2017. I want the adventure to continue.

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