My name is Kimberly and I'm the reader/reviewer behind Wit and Sin. Wit and Sin is a website that provides honest reviews and publicity. I primarily read and review Romance titles, but I also review Urban Fantasy, New Adult, Young Adult, Mystery, and Non-Fiction titles. In addition to Wit and Sin, I am a reviewer for Joyfully Reviewed (pen name: Shayna) and Romance Junkies (pen name: Lily).
The fight for the soul of the Library is on in Ash and Quill. Rachel Caine takes readers on an electrifying journey as Jess, Morgan, Khalila, Dario, Thomas, Glain, Santi, and Wolfe escape the threat of Library soldiers only to find themselves imprisoned in Philadelphia, the heart of Burner territory. The Burners would rather die than submit to library control and censorship, and Jess will have to bargain with them in order for he and his friends to even have a chance to survive. And our heroes’ bargaining chip is a big one: the idea and knowledge of how to build a printing press – a chance for people to read free of the Library’s ever-watchful eye.
I’m hesitant to say too much about the plot of Ash and Quill for fear of spoiling the story. The danger the Burners present is only the beginning of what Jess and his friends will encounter over the course of this story. Suffice it to say there is never a dull moment in this book. Now that they’re openly rebelling against the rot that threatens to destroy all that the Library could be, it’s open season on our beloved heroes. Though their love of books and knowledge still shines, everyone’s hope and optimism must give way to practicality if they even have a shot at surviving and bringing change to the world. It was interesting to see how all eight heroes have changed since the beginning of the first Great Library book, Ink and Bone, but it also saddened me (as it should) to see them strain under the weight of their burden. Everyone has their own unique personality and because I’ve come to care for them over the course of the series, it was nearly impossible for me to put Ash and Quill. I both love and hate that Ms. Caine makes it impossible to know if the characters I’ve come to adore will all make it out alive. They definitely won’t make it out unscarred and I love that there were no easily overcome obstacles in this book. Their quest to save the soul of the Library carries real weight and thus makes it easy to become invested in their fight.
Jess, Morgan, Khalila, Dario, Thomas, Glain, Santi, and Wolfe are the heart and soul of the Great Library series and the growing bonds of friendship and love are tested throughout Ash and Quill. Those intertwining bonds are what tugged on my emotions the most and highlight how much our heroes have to lose. That being said, the world the characters inhabit is just as important to the story, and Ms. Caine’s worldbuilding continues to be phenomenal. When I started this book I was excited to see what this world’s version of Philadelphia would look like, and Ms. Caine didn’t hold back in bringing the tragic world of the Burner stronghold to life. The images that come to life in this story are both beautiful and bleak, and just plain made me love Ms. Caine’s writing.
Ash and Quill is the third book in the Great Library series and it definitely cannot be read as a standalone. The series reads like one massive story, so don’t skip reading Ink and Bone and Paper and Fire. The only problem I have with this series is that I hate having to wait for the next book.Ash and Quill ends with one heck of a cliffhanger and I’m dying to know what happens next!
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.