Sunday, April 7, 2019

Review: The Binding by Bridget Collins

Imagine you could erase grief.
Imagine you could remove pain.
Imagine you could hide the darkest, most horrifying secret.

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.

 Hardcover, 448 pages
Published January 10th, 2019
by The Borough Press

This was such an interesting story, the plot was unique and original. Imagine being able to erase those horrible memories and not feel the pain anymore. But that brings up the question - which is worse? To feel nothing or to grieve for something you no longer remember.

And while I found this book got off to a slow start I soon became so enamored with the direction this story took.  Divided into 3 parts with different pov's brought this story full circle, the writing was vivid setting me there, feeling the cold, silence and emotions.
“The house was so quiet it was as if the walls were holding their breath. Every few hours, during that day and the days that followed, I had to go outside and listen to the dry wind in the reeds, just to make sure I hadn’t gone deaf.”
It's not that often (at least in books I've read) that there is a male protagonist and I enjoyed that aspect here.  Even the fact that I really didn't like Emmett that much, or his friend, I couldn't turn my back on them.

I was drawn to this book by that yummy cover, it's even better in person.  Bridget Collins is a new author to me, I will be checking out her other books. 

My copy was from my personal library - yea it has to grace my shelves.

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