The Binding

The Binding

A Novel

Book - 2019
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"In the tradition of Sarah Waters, Helene Wecker, and Jessie Burton, an atmospheric and mystery-laden historical novel set within a magical world where books are not stories but the repository of individual lives"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, NY : William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2019]
Edition: First U.S. edition.
ISBN: 9780062838094
0062838091
Characteristics: 435 pages ; 24 cm

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t
t3485tank
Aug 02, 2020

If I could recommend someone only one book (that was not part of a series) it would be this one. This is A book for mature audiences so have that in mind before starting it. Other than that this book is perfection. Saying anything else will just spoil this wonderful story as it has SO many surprises and plot twists. Also a (sort of) slow start but please stay with it you won’t be sorry.

forbesrachel May 29, 2020

If there was a memory that could break you, would you want to forget? If you could how would its absence change you? Through a love that a society can't accept, and through different perspectives, The Binding questions even more. When do the ties of family become chains? Does "commercializing" someone's memory even respect them? Much like the lives of Emmett and Lucian, the story doesn't exactly end up where we expected it to, and yet the payoff is much more satisfying. Emmett doesn't know that he has forgotten something, and unfortunately the process by which this was done is killing him. Whether he agrees with it or not, Emmett is a binder and he is forced to take up an apprenticeship. It is a quiet life, but this fake peace unravels with each gradually added piece. The first hint of the forgotten story comes when another young man visits. Lucian comes from a wealthy, controlling family, but there was one summer where he found love. Betrayal leads him to make a decision he despises though. Just as much as this is a story about memory, it is also about the power of bonds. Collins' first adult fiction title bares some hallmarks of her YA roots; the book is told by both Emmett and Lucian, and identity is a central theme. For this reason, many teens will also enjoy it. While the first half runs at a steady pace, it is quiet with an undercurrent of tension from the questions, the second balances it with plenty of character development, plot movement, and romance. This structure also mimics and enhances the content; the faux life hides reality. Readers will be intrigued and absorbed by both parts. Maybe there are some memories which should be forgotten, but there are others which should never ever.

t
thefoxdenbooks
Jan 22, 2020

This book is perfect for someone looking for magical realism cooked up in a slowly simmering gothic pot. Storytelling at it’s finest.

b
brookelundquist
Jan 14, 2020

The book centers around people who can take memories you no longer want to remember and "bind" them to a book. The idea and the characters were great but it did read fairly slow which killed the story at points.

s
samsue
Oct 20, 2019

I gave up on this book half way through, something I rarely do. Apparently, this author is a successful writer of books for young adults. If this is an example, I feel sorry for her readers. This book starts out with one promising idea, touches it only long enough to arouse your curiosity, then moves onto another idea, then another, then another. Any of these ideas would have made for a decent read, but the writer hasn't done the work to fully flesh out any of them. Not impressive.

JessicaGma Oct 17, 2019

It took a bit to get into the mythos here about why books are bad and what they actually represent in this world, but once you figure out what the deal is with Emmett, it makes sense, and the story picks up. I don't know if it was that novel in terms of magic versus normals, but the pretense of books acting as pensieves is interesting. Intriguing but not the best fantasy I have read this year.

m
mynovelesquelife
Jun 07, 2019

RATING: 1 STAR
DNF @ 30%
(Review Not on Blog)

This novel was a bit painful to read and not based on subject matter but because of the writing. I found that my mind either wandered and I could not remember what I last read, or I found myself forcing myself to reread passages. I then decided to try the audiobook and I was able to make it to 30% before I realized I have no investment in the story or the characters. I am giving up on this one.

***I received an eARC from EDELWEISS***

LPL_LeahN May 18, 2019

Imagine a world where our secrets and memories, good and bad, are taken from us and bound into books. We can choose to be bound and forget. For love, or for money, or just for the sake of forgetting our pain. But there's always a cost.

This book is kind of dark and brooding, but the premise is so compelling. I feel like the author could write an entire series about bookbinders, and I would gobble them up, too. It's very descriptively written and includes a beautiful romance.

b
becker
Apr 08, 2019

I thoroughly enjoyed this. It is a mix between historical fiction and folklore and was fresh and well written. I especially loved the subtle sense of dread throughout the novel which made you feel as if something bad was going to happen any minute. It takes place in a world that uses a process called binding to erase certain memories from a person's mind which is then stored in a book. You may find it a bit slow to start but it doesn't take long to get wrapped up in the character's lives.

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