Book Reviews, Fiction, Young Adult

Book Review – Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine


I chose Ink and Bone, by Rachel Caine, as one of my #FridayFiveChallenge books; you can read that post HERE – I had five minutes to decide if I wanted to BUY or PASS.

Rachel Caine is the author of The Morganville Vampire Series, an incredibly popular young adult series. As an avid YA fan, it was an easy choice for me to choose BUY and add this title to my holiday packing list.

The story in brief:

Ink and Bone follows the story of Jess, a runner for an underground book smuggling family. Books are not allowed in Jess’s world. It is a crime against the Library to own an original copy. Only blanks are permitted, a device where you can read a copy of a book that is under the control of the Library. Jess is passionate about books, and as he is an integral part of the smuggling community, he can get his hands on quite a few originals.

His father sees an opportunity to get hold of more original books by sending Jess to enroll with the Library; this is where we see our MC begin his training and make new friends. The large group of postulants are set a series of tests and one by one eliminated from the program. Only six spaces exist, and Jess is desperate for a place. Thrust into the ways of the Library, he learns another side to the institution that rules the world. Corruption, death, and mystery are woven into this explosive story.

My review:

5 out of 5*

I liked the fact that this story was from a boy’s POV, the majority of the books I read have a female protagonist. Jess won me over immediately, with his love of literature and his reluctance to a life of crime. The strained relationship with his parents and twin brother make it easy for you to root for him when it comes time for him to leave.

We meet a string of characters who complement Jess’s quest; Thomas is the friendly giant who excels in engineering, Dario is the pain in Jess’s butt, and Morgan is the potential romantic interest. My favourite character is Wolfe, the tutor, who takes no prisoners. He reminds me so much of Snape from Harry Potter, even down to the flowing cloak.

The characters are brought to life with expert ease; the fast-paced story keeping you hooked from the first page until the cliffhanger ending. Although the story is left wide open for book two (and hopefully three and four), it is wrapped up in such a way that you don’t feel cheated.

There are tears, laughs and tender moments, where the characters you believed were one thing, shock you and tested your beliefs.

Any fan of young adult and fantasy will love this book.

Ink and Bone, by Rachel Caine – –

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