The Invisible Library series v. 5-7

The Mortal Word

InvisibleLibrary-5-MortalWord-covIn the latest novel in Genevieve Cogman’s historical fantasy series, the fate of worlds lies in the balance. When a dragon is murdered at a peace conference, time-travelling Librarian spy Irene must solve the case to keep the balance between order, chaos… and the Library.

When Irene returns to London after a relatively straightforward book theft in Germany, Bradamant informs her that there is a top secret dragon-Fae peace conference in progress that the Library is mediating, and that the second-in-command dragon has been stabbed to death. Tasked with solving the case, Vale and Irene immediately go to 1890s Paris to start their investigation.

Once they arrive, they find evidence suggesting that the murder victim might have uncovered proof of treachery by one or more Librarians. But to ensure the peace of the conference, some Librarians are being held as hostages in the dragon and Fae courts. To save the captives, including her parents, Irene must get to the bottom of this murder–but was it a dragon, a Fae, or even a Librarian who committed the crime?” [Text from the publisher’s website ; see also the backcover]

The Invisible Library 5: The Mortal Word, by Genevieve Cogman. New York: ROC (New American Library, imprint of Penguin Random House), November 2018. 448 pages, 8.25 x 5.5 in., $US 17.00, ISBN 9780399587443, For YA readers (14+). stars-3-0

The Secret Chapter

InvisibleLibrary-6-SecretChapter-covTime-travelling, dimension-jumping, Librarian-spy Irene and dragon-prince Kai will have to team up with an unlikely band of misfits to pull off an amazing art heist—or risk the wrath of a dangerous villain with a secret island lair.

A Librarian’s work is never done, and Irene is summoned to the Library. The world where she grew up is in danger of veering deep into chaos, and she needs to obtain a particular book to stop this from happening. Her only choice is to contact a mysterious Fae information-broker and trader of rare objects: Mr. Nemo.

Irene and Kai make their way to Mr. Nemo’s remote Caribbean island and are invited to dinner, which includes unlikely company. Mr. Nemo has an offer for everyone there: he wants them to steal a specific painting from a specific world. But to get their reward, they will have to form a team, including a dragon techie, a Fae thief, a gambler, a driver, and the muscle. Their goal? The Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, in an early twenty-first-century world, where their toughest challenge might be each other.” [Text from the publisher’s website ; see also the backcover]

The Invisible Library 6: The Secret Chapter, by Genevieve Cogman. New York: ROC (New American Library, imprint of Penguin Random House), January 2020. 352 pages, 8.25 x 5.5 in., $US 16.00, ISBN 9781984804761, For YA readers (14+). stars-4-0

The Dark Archive

InvisibleLibrary-7-DarkArchive-covA professional spy for a mysterious Library which harvests fiction from different realities, Irene faces a series of assassination attempts that threaten to destroy her and everything she has worked for.

Irene is teaching her new assistant the fundamentals of a Librarian’s job, and finding that training a young Fae is more difficult than she expected. But when they’re the targets of kidnapping and assassination attempts, she decides that learning by doing is the only option they have left … 

In order to protect themselves, Irene and her friends must do what they do best: search for information to defeat the overwhelming threat they face and identify their unseen enemy. To do that, Irene will have to delve deeper into her own history than she ever has before, face an ancient foe, and uncover secrets that will change her life and the course of the Library forever.”  [Text from the publisher’s website ; see also the backcover]

The Invisible Library 7: The Dark Archive, by Genevieve Cogman. New York: ROC (New American Library, imprint of Penguin Random House), December 2020. 352 pages, 8.25 x 5.5 in., $US 16.00, ISBN 9781984804785, For YA readers (14+). stars-3-5

>> Please, read the warning for possible spoilers <<

This is a fantasy series by British author Genevieve Cogman about a secret library hidden in-between worlds with doors opening to an infinite variety of parallel dimensions. Its librarians are “stealing” rares books and manuscripts from each of those worlds in order to create a link with them and preserve the balance between order and chaos. The universe is engulfed in an eternal war of influence between the Fae (the agents of chaos) and the dragons (the agents of order). Humans inhabiting those worlds are only pawns in their hands. Such a setting allows for a story that goes beyond the traditional genres of literature, as it both in turn fantasy, science-fiction, mystery or even cyberpunk ! I have commented on the first four volumes last summer.

With a long series like this one you would expect it to become repetitive or even stale after a while, but it is not the case. The author always find ways to bring new captivating intrigues and adventures, whether it is by having the cast of characters protecting a peace conference in “la Belle Époque” Paris against an entire new enemy in book five, or having them to steal a painting in Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum in book six or having to fight not one but three old enemies underneath Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia Basílica all the while having to train a new apprentice in book seven, the stories always feel fresh. With each episode the character are growing and we learn more about their backgrounds (what are the fae? Who are the dragons?), particularly about the mysterious childhood origin of the main character, librarian Irene Winters.

It is easy to read, always captivating and quite well written. I strongly recommend it to everyone who likes adventures and books ! I have also discovered that the 8th book of the series, “The Untold Story”, is coming out on December 28th, 2021 !!! I can’t wait to see where the story is going after the big revelations of the last two books…

For more information you can check the following websites:

[ AmazonGoodreadsGoogleNelliganWikipediaWorldCat ]

© Genevieve Cogman, 2018-2020.

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