9 Dec 2016

#Review: INK AND BONE by Rachel Caine


Author: Rachel Caine
Series: The Great Library #1
Source: Purchased from BookOutlet
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication Date: July 7, 2015
Rating: 2.5/5 stars

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 went into this one with zero expectations but also was anticipating something a little more exciting. I felt like there was a lot of build up but no real pay off and it was kind of, dare I say it, boring. I thought that there would be more based on the summary but the thing from the summary happens at the end and is kind of brushed off.

I also felt like there were a lot of different story lines in here that didn't really overlap or have a real conclusion? Everything mentioned stayed pretty open and I know there is more to the series, but there are some things mentioned once or twice and then forgotten about forever -- or at least until the end of the book when they need to be mentioned again so the reader remembers them for the next one.

I didn't mind the characters and liked that they all had their own thoughts and expectations and secrets. But some of them were just like randomly killed and we found out after the "why" and it was like "okayyyy but maybe we should have known that before?" Also there was SO MUCH mention of Wolfe's background and "family connections" to the point that I thought I missed it ... until it was stated near the very end. But everyone seemed to know (even Jess) but NOT US. Why?

I liked the idea of this one with knowledge being kept and curated by one group and that giving them power. I also liked the smugglers and the Burners. But I thought everything in here was kinda half-assed. I think there were too many ideas and not enough time to fully develop them -- or random tangents about other things that didn't really seem to matter in the grand scheme of things. I just wanted more cohesiveness to this one and didn't get that.

The writing was also difficult to get into. It took me probably double to triple the amount of time it should have taken me to read it because of the way it was written. Which is saying a lot because I read really quickly.

Mostly, if you're curious, read it. If not, don't bother. I would say it is a library read though, not a buy. I may still check out the second book in the series though.


  1. I completely agree with your review and pretty much every point you make. I loved the concept of Ink and Bone, but the execution was really lacking. I read the second book that came out this year, Paper and Fire, because I hoped that it would pick up a bit, but unfortunately it didn't do much for me either. :( If you do pick up the second book though, I hope you enjoy it more than this one!

  2. I was wanting to read this - but it sounds very disappointing. With so many great books out there, I'm trying to avoid the ones that seem to be lacklustre... thanks for sharing! Hope your next read is much better!

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