Ink and Bone is a BOOK about BOOKS (!!!) – does it get any better?
I rarely give 5 stars out (well, that’s a lie) but this book TOTALY deserved it. I mean nearly every aspect of this book was literal PERFECTION. I AM IN LOVE because fantasy mixed with dystopia with a love for words and a magical library mixed in! I mean, who could ask for a better book?
Knowledge is power. Power corrupts.
In a world where the ancient Great Library of Alexandria was never destroyed, knowledge now rules the world: freely available, but strictly controlled. Owning private books is a crime.
Jess Brightwell is the son of a black market book smuggler, sent to the Library to compete for a position as a scholar . . . but even as he forms friendships and finds his true gifts, he begins to unearth the dark secrets of the greatest, most revered institution in the world.
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’ve never read anything by ‘Rachel Caine’ before, so I didn’t have much to go on. After Cait ( Paper Fury) and May (Forever and Everly) going on about how awesome it was, I knew I had to read it. I put it on my TBR about 2 months ago, and by sheer luck, I found it in my library. Yes, I do like that unoriginal (because 3 other books are called this) title and COVER. Like first, it looked pretty UGLY to me, but now I can’t hep but staring at it – it’s just wonderful.
I feel like this book was PLOT AND CHARACTER driven but I still loved the plot.There was magic, I think? I mean you could make books disappear straight to the Archive. You could practically teleport (with some down-sides) I mean how much more magical does it get? There’s no spells or whatnot but it’s definitely got that fantasy element which I loved.
AND IT WAS BASED AROUND BOOKS! They have blanks which are like e-readers? And the Codex is kinda like their online library. IT WAS SO DIFFERENT AND ORIGINAL. I loved the whole getting into the Great Library and having this whole test thing. It reminded me so much of HP, the friendships and experiences and the nightly escapes – it just added to THE FEELS and the magic
AND THE POLITICS! I mean the Burners and Ink Lickers JUST CREEPED ME OUT A LITTLE but that extra evil in the story made it so much juicier! I mean who else comes up with such genius ideas? The political side to this story shows how the Burners were like these ‘terrorists’ and The Great Library this dystopian government. I LIVE FOR THIS. Morgan’s dad, The Smugglers, all these acts of rebellion, it was so FREAKIN’ COOL!
“When you steal a book, you steal from the world”
The premise is essentially GREAT. Knowledge is freely available but original copies of books are really valuable and you’re not allowed to own your own books (GASP). You’re only allowed Blanks which allow you to read ANY book from the ‘Codex’ (this like catalogue of books) which the Obscurists ‘mirror’ for you. Basically, the premise is what really made me get sucked into this world. It took a while for me to understand how things worked, but Caine manages to balance world-building and characters and plot and EVERYTHING!!! Even the pace was adorable, okay??? It’s set in 2025 and gosh that’s scary because that’s close. But of course, nothing like this would ever happen?
“There are three parts to learning: information, knowledge and wisdom, A mere accumulation of information is not knowledge, and a treasure of knowledge is not in itself, wisdom.”
They were all so diverse and well-developed and WONDERFUL. And they all grow up and mature near the end which is sad but also wonderful to see. And they all had their own secrets and history which just added more depth to them.
I am so glad that we had a good main character, Jess. I’m sick and tired of reading these heroes who are the ‘chosen one’s and are really perfect and ‘sassy’. It’s just getting annoying now and SO JESS WAS WONDERFUL He wasn’t ‘the chosen one’ though he had rare qualities about him. He made mistakes and he had flaws like the rest of the characters.
I LOVE Khalila, she’s Muslim and represented so well! She’s clever and smart, and yes, a little ‘sassy’ but not your typical character.
Dario was really rude and snobby at first (though I couldn’t help loving his character), but he grew out of his posh upbringing and became an awesome character.
Glain was also great! Some people might have found her boring but THAT WAS HER PERSONALITY and she was very realistic. She didn’t sugar coat anything and just because she wasn’t every socially able, DOESN’T MEAN SHE WASN’T AWESOME. Like she tried and that was the best.
AND THOMAS, HE WAS SO SWEET AND WONDERFULL
Morgan was the only one I struggled with, to be honest. I didn’t expect much from her at the beginning and she ended up being ‘the chosen one’ But i started to love her too! Mainly because of Jess, but she was still quite great and I FELT SO BAD FOR HER AT THE END.
I can’t leave out Dario’s constant ongoing battle with Jess, was hilarious and a wonderful addition to the story.
“Jess extended his right hand. It hurt but he managed to hold it up, and after a moment, Dario got to his feet and walked over to grasp it. ‘We’re still not friends.’ Jess said. ‘Thank God.’
‘Imagine my relief.’ Dario went back to his bunk”
I loved it! It wasn’t this OVER DRAMATIC SHORT SENTENCE EVERY SECOND rubbish, it was real. It wasn’t too complex, but there were some parts I loved, like quotes I remember and perfectly perfect scenes that made laugh, hold my breath, or smile.
Not to mention the format. I loved how between every chapter there was an EPHEMERA (which I’m not sure means) but there was basically this WHOLE backstory with Wolfe and Artifex and Obscurists which JUST ADDED TO THE WORLDBUILDING.
Did I mention I LOVE WOLFE?! His character development WAS REAL and he was so kind and good and HE HAD A HISTORY, and probably my favourite character. And Santi was also LIKE GREAT because he just was there for Wolfe and I really liked his personality.
“He pulled out his personal journal and pen. Jess understood the impulse, all too well, to spill out the bile and hurt into ink, where no one could see it.”
Do you love fantasy books? What are your thoughts on books about books? Have you read Ink and Bone – what did you think? Adding this to your TBR right now – because you should be?! Have you read a book similar to this – dystopia and fantasy mixed together? What did you think of this book review?