Review: The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman


Overall Score: 8/10

Genre: Fantasy, Mystery, Steampunk, Young Adult

Publisher: Roc

Release Date: June 14th 2016

Source: Bought

Book Summary (From GoodReads)

One thing any Librarian will tell you: the truth is much stranger than fiction…

Irene is a professional spy for the mysterious Library, a shadowy organization that collects important works of fiction from all of the different realities. Most recently, she and her enigmatic assistant Kai have been sent to an alternative London. Their mission: Retrieve a particularly dangerous book. The problem: By the time they arrive, it’s already been stolen.

London’s underground factions are prepared to fight to the death to find the tome before Irene and Kai do, a problem compounded by the fact that this world is chaos-infested—the laws of nature bent to allow supernatural creatures and unpredictable magic to run rampant. To make matters worse, Kai is hiding something—secrets that could be just as volatile as the chaos-filled world itself.

Now Irene is caught in a puzzling web of deadly danger, conflicting clues, and sinister secret societies. And failure is not an option—because it isn’t just Irene’s reputation at stake, it’s the nature of reality itself…


First of all, that cover. Every time I walked past this book in the bookstore, it was a struggle to not immediately buy it just for the cover. On the day when I finally broke down and looked at the back of the book for the summary, I knew I was a goner. The Invisible Library is about a world-traveling librarian (she’s even more awesome than a regular librarian though), Irene, and her secretive assistant, Kai.

The Library is a place out of time where all of the books from various worlds are collected in order to maintain the balance between Chaos and Order. The premise for the Library itself sounds absolutely amazing and I would happily sign up to work for them in a hearbeat. Its agents are essentially trained spies who collect the requested books from various worlds, which can sometimes be highly complex and dangerous.

We meet Irene when she has been assigned a more dangerous assignment and a new assistant. I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but there are dragons, a Sherlock Holmes-esque character, Fae, adventures, and multiple enemies. The story kept me highly entertained and the ending was extremely satisfying. The dialogue is clever and the relationships between characters are interesting (and highly entertaining). There is quite a lot of information given to the reader in this first book so it was slightly overwhelming at the beginning. However, it didn’t take me that long to have a general idea of how everything was related in this world and how the various types of magic worked.

This book is quirky, magical, and, most of all, highly entertaining. The book hints at mysteries to come and I cannot wait to get lost in Irene and Kai’s world once again.

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