ARC Review: “Paper & Fire” (The Great Library #2) by Rachel Caine

Okay, so I did not expect to love this book. I didn’t even think I would like it but alas, I found myself requesting it on Netgalley, thinking “There’s no way I’ll get approved.” Wrong, Nicole! So wrong! And thank goodness, I was.

I had some problems with the first book in the series, Ink and Bone. So much that I wrote a meh review about to on Goodreads. But man, I read book 2 like nobody’s business. Everything I just thought was “meh” about the first book becomes everything I really loved about this second book.

Thank you Netgalley and Berkley Publishing Group for sending me a copy! I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest review. 🙂

paper and fire

Title: Paper and Fire (The Great Library #2)
Author: Rachel Caine
Expected release date: July 5, 2016
Publisher: NAL (Berkley Publishing Group)
Length: 368 pages (hardcover)
Genre: Young adult, science fiction, dystopian, fantasy
Synopsis: (from Goodreads) “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 rating: 4/5 stars

Omg, I loved this! A lot more than I loved the first book in the series. Maybe I just wasn’t in the right mood when I read the first one but this one–so excited!

I grew to love all the characters in this book, and I understood the world a lot better. Of course the world building continues to be fantastic and we get a deeper look into the Library and how…wrong things are, what they’re doing, and how they’re controlling books and knowledge. It’s crazy for me to imagine someone controlling physical copies of books. The concept was sketchy to me at first so I think that’s why I didn’t rate the first book as highly as I did this one. However, as I read this book I’ve come to appreciate the concept and love the execution and the writing style. There are major feels in this book. ❤

One of the things I loved most of all about were the friendships. The friendships between the characters were fantastic. They’ve seen a lot more than other students and that definitely tightened the bonds of their friendship. They’re the “leave no man behind” type of friends and it was just brilliant to read. The romance was good too (Santi and Wolfe <3) and I didn’t even mind the romance between Jess and Morgan. The romance is desperate and passionate, one of those “I don’t know if I’m going to see you again” kind of romances and I love those the most.

The writing is absolutely fantastic! Caine has such an extensive bibliography but this is the first series by her I’ve read. I was in for a great ride and I thoroughly enjoyed it all.

The ending is a major cliffhanger though! The next book probably won’t come out until next year but I look forward! I look forward to adding this series to my own library as well.

4 thoughts on “ARC Review: “Paper & Fire” (The Great Library #2) by Rachel Caine

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