Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves created and hosted by Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up! For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post, here.
by Bridget Collins
Young Emmett Farmer is working in the fields when a strange letter arrives summoning him away from his family. He is to begin an apprenticeship as a Bookbinder—a vocation that arouses fear, superstition, and prejudice among their small community but one neither he nor his parents can afford to refuse.
For as long as he can recall, Emmett has been drawn to books, even though they are strictly forbidden. Bookbinding is a sacred calling, Seredith informs her new apprentice, and he is a binder born. Under the old woman’s watchful eye, Emmett learns to hand-craft the elegant leather-bound volumes. Within each one they will capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory. If there’s something you want to forget, a binder can help. If there’s something you need to erase, they can assist. Within the pages of the books they create, secrets are concealed and the past is locked away. In a vault under his mentor’s workshop, rows upon rows of books are meticulously stored.
But while Seredith is an artisan, there are others of their kind, avaricious and amoral tradesman who use their talents for dark ends—and just as Emmett begins to settle into his new circumstances, he makes an astonishing discovery: one of the books has his name on it. Soon, everything he thought he understood about his life will be dramatically rewritten.
This book came out back in January and I picked up a copy because I loved the premise. A book binder who can bind memories into books? Yes please! What I didn’t realise until I started seeing reviews was that the romance in it is LGBT+ and I’m still a bit miffed that the publisher hasn’t shouted about it more. I’d love to get to this one for Pride Month if I can!
Earlier this year I included it in My 5 Star Fantasy TBR Predictions – so far I’ve read two books from that list and rated them both 5 stars, so I’m hopeful I’ll enjoy this one!
What’s been your favourite read of 2019 so far? Is it a book you thought you’d love as much as you did?
This week I’m joining in with Lipsy @ Lipsyy Lost & Found to talk about the books I’ve been reading recently!
I aim to read lots of fiction including queer characters throughout the year – especially as someone who identifies most closely with demisexuality – but as June is Pride Month I’m trying to read and celebrate as much of it as I can. After the Eclipse is a 2019 debut and it’s also a thriller that just so happens to include a queer heroine, which I don’t think I’ve come across before (but that’s probably because I don’t tend to reach for thrillers very often).
I’m really enjoying this one so far, about a journalist who finds herself investigating the disappearance of a little girl which has suspicious similarities to the disappearance of her own sister over a decade before. I’ve been a bit low recently; May was a bit of a rubbish reading month and then I got some disappointing news at the beginning of this month that’s had me feeling down, so as much as I’ve been enjoying all the fantasy I’ve been reading this year I don’t think I realised how much I needed a palate cleanser!
I’m still loving my fantasy, of course, and I had a lot of fun with this Italian-inspired LGBT+ fantasy featuring gender-fluid witches. I love Italy, it’s my favourite country to visit, so I really enjoyed the world Capetta created in The Brilliant Death and I loved her writing style. Look out for my review!
Becky Albertalli’s my favourite YA contemporary author but I still haven’t What If It’s Us, co-written with Adam Silvera, and Pride Month seems like the perfect time to pick it up! I just happened to find the Kindle edition on sale for 99p, so I snapped it up and, if it’s anything like Albertalli’s other novels, I’ll probably read it in one sitting.