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Smoke and Iron by Rachel Caine

Smoke and Iron

by Rachel Caine

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What would be like if the Great Library of Alexandria had never burned down? Would all the amazing knowledge that was stored there and now is gone have enriched the world? Just imagine what a different world we could live in today. That is what Rachel Caine has done with The Great Library series. She created a world where the library never burned down and is now a presence in every major city in the world, controlling knowledge. Through alchemy, the library can deliver any of the content in the library directly to anyone. However, it's forbidden to own books. Anyone threatening the power of the Great Library is put down.

  MaraBlaise | May 19, 2019 |
Smoke and Iron is another fabulous instalment in Rachel Caine’s The Great Library young adult fantasy series, following Ink and Bone, Paper and Fire, and Ash and Quill.

“The Archivist made us into an ugly thing,… A thing that used fear to control the world. But we are not what he made us. We are more. We stand, unafraid. And together. Because we are the Great Library!”

In a world where book ownership is forbidden, the rebellion determined to free knowledge from the Archivist’s Iron grip, and save The Great Library, is about to spill in to war.

The story picks up almost immediately following the events of Ash and Quill. This instalment unfolds from the viewpoints of Jess, Morgan, Khalila, and Wolfe. While Jess (impersonating his twin brother, Brendan) endeavours to learn the Archivist’s secrets, Morgan has returned to the Obscurist’s Iron Tower seeking vulnerabilities she can exploit. Meanwhile Wolfe struggles to hold onto his sanity deep in the cells of Alexandria, and Khalila does her best to keep her friends, and their mission, safe and on track.

The plot is fast paced and tension filled. Each member of the rebel group has an important part to play in preparation for the coming Feast of Greater Burning, the stakes are higher, and the risks greater, than ever.

The final book in this series, Sword and Pen, is not expected to be published until 2020. Such a long time to wait! ( )
  shelleyraec | Apr 11, 2019 |
June 26, 2017
I. CAN'T. WAIT! *Fangirl squeals!* Ah! I found this cover revealed on @darkfaerietales_ on IG and it's gorgeous! I can't wait to read it, Ash and Quill is my top favorite 2017 book to date!

Review: I don't know.... On the one hand, I enjoyed this one, but after the ending of book 3 (Ash and Quill) I feel...that perhaps this one wasn't as...mind-blowing? Okay, sure there is an epic ending, and plenty of danger and suspense throughout, but I don't know, I kind of saw this ending coming? That said, it leave loads of potential for book 5, the finally of this amazing series!

I loved seeing the characters each find their place in this one, and enjoyed reading it overall, I just feel that this one is more of a bridge from book 3-5 than the others have been. A lot happens, but there is also a lot of planning, and strategizing going on from all sides. I was able to predict most of the surprises in this one, but there were plenty of places where I was cheering for Jess and his friends that it didn't bother me. I saw a lot of character growth in this one, as with the rest of the series, and I hope that continues into the final book.

( )
  Shadow494 | Apr 2, 2019 |
This is the fourth book in The Great Library series (there are five book planned for this series). I continue to really really love this series. The world-building is amazing and I adore all the characters.

This book changes between numerous POVs which worked really well. Unlike some books that switch POV, I love every single character in this book and looked forward to every portion of the book.

Things really build to a head as Jess and his classmates try to save the Great Library from itself. The majority of the book sees our characters separated from each other but they end up coming back together for the finale. There is a lot of action and intrigue in here as well as a bit of romance.

These books have a bit of a pattern to them. A lot of the book is dedicated to some big plan that Jess devises and then everything goes wrong….this pattern happens every book. This is pretty much my only issue with this series, I wish at some point things would go according to plan for our heroes!

Overall I love this series and can't wait to see how things wrap up in the fifth and final book! I would recommend to those who enjoy historical fantasy/steampunk novels with amazing world-building and intriguing characters. ( )
  krau0098 | Mar 31, 2019 |
I received this ARC from Berkley Books via Goodreads Giveaways in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of this book in any way.
  Faith_Murri | Jan 5, 2019 |
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To librarians and teachers everywhere, who operate without funds, without support, without even basic acknowledgment much of the time: you inspire me, and so many other people. You touch lives and create hope. You connect our past to our future. Don't forget how important you really are
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"To save the Great Library, the unforgettable characters from Ink and Bone, Paper and Fire, and Ash and Quill put themselves in danger in the next thrilling adventure in the New York Times bestselling series. The opening moves of a deadly game have begun. Jess Brightwell has put himself in direct peril, with only his wits and skill to aid him in a game of cat and mouse with the Archivist Magister of the Great Library. With the world catching fire, and words printed on paper the spark that lights rebellion, it falls to smugglers, thieves, and scholars to save a library thousands of years in the making ... if they can stay alive long enough to outwit their enemies"--… (more)

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