Disclosure: I received a copy of this book free of charge for review purposes only. Receipt of a book does not guarantee a review or endorsement. My reviews are my honest opinion and are not biased for the purpose of personal gain.
The Untold Story is the 8th book in The Invisible Library series and therefore this review may contain spoilers for the previous books. I highly recommend the series if you haven’t tried it yet!
Worlds are disappearing, both fae and dragon realms, and the Library has no idea why, the books that anchored them are gone too. Irene feels a bit like she is being kept out of trouble, on an assignment in an alternate Russia to get another fae archetype to sign the treaty. Now she, and certain Librarians, know about her true parentage, does that mean they no longer trust her?
I didn’t become a Librarian in order to kill people or destroy worlds. I became a Librarian to save books, to save stories, and to save the worlds that create them.
The Untold Story wraps up Alberich’s story, after the bombshell dropped in The Dark Archive. When Irene returns to the Library she is encouraged to go after her father, but it can’t be official. As far as everyone else is concerned, she’s gone rogue. With Alberich trapped in a hell of his own making, how is he still able to reach out to Irene?
Lord Silver’s niece, Catherine, has been allowed to attend apprentice classes within the Library, but she’d still just rather be reading. And something doesn’t seem quite right in this liminal space, the other apprentices talk of shadows among the stacks.
This is how the rest of eternity will be – down here in the darkness, with the books, all the books, keeping them safe, owning them, reading them.
This does feel like a conclusion of the series, although Genevieve has said she’s not finished with the Library yet. All the key characters of the series get a part to play, and much is revealed about the history of the Library and some of its mythology. And of course, the core team sticks together to kick shadowy ass, with Kai, Peregrine and even Catherine showing loyalty and helping her to save the world.
While she would like to believe they were a well-drilled squad who’d stay together through mortal peril, honesty compelled her to admit that they’d all be distracted – herself included – by any interesting discovery. And the Library was full of interesting discoveries.
The untold story of the title is that of the Library itself. A story that supposedly drove one Librarian mad. Does it hold the answers to the disappearing worlds or is it nothing more than a story?
This has been one of my favourite books in the series, with intrigue, Librarian humour and moving goodbyes. I love the way the Language was used as a sort of magic throughout the series and the fae archetypes allowed her to play with cliched characters and plots.
I do hope there are more Invisible Library books in the future, but if not, this would be a satisfying ending. I am also looking forward to her new series involving vampires, the French Revolution and the Scarlet Pimpernel.
The Untold Story is published by Pan Macmillan and will be available in paperback and ebook editions from 9th December 2021. Thanks go to the publisher for providing a copy for review via NetGalley.
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