Librarian-spy Irene and her apprentice Kai are back in the second in this “dazzling”* book-filled fantasy series from the author of The Invisible Library.
The written word is mightier than the sword—most of the time...
Working in an alternate version of Victorian London, Librarian-spy Irene has settled into a routine, collecting important fiction for the mysterious Library and blending in nicely with the local culture. But when her apprentice, Kai—a dragon of royal descent—is kidnapped by the Fae, her carefully crafted undercover operation begins to crumble.
Kai’s abduction could incite a conflict between the forces of chaos and order that would devastate all worlds and all dimensions. To keep humanity from getting caught in the crossfire, Irene will have to team up with a local Fae leader to travel deep into a version of Venice filled with dark magic, strange coincidences, and a perpetual celebration of Carnival—and save her friend before he becomes the first casualty of a catastrophic war.
But navigating the tumultuous landscape of Fae politics will take more than Irene’s book-smarts and fast-talking—to ward off Armageddon, she might have to sacrifice everything she holds dear....
INCLUDES AUTHOR INTERVIEW
The second installment of Cogman's whimsical fantasy series (after The Invisible Library) follows the career of Irene, a spy for the international organization called the Library, and her dragon prot g , Kai. Irene has grown complacent in an alternate Victorian London, but her world is disrupted when Kai is kidnapped. She must retrieve him before a war erupts between the dragons and the Fae. Irene's quest takes her to opulent Italy, rendered in rich, alluring detail. Cogman keeps up with the voice and pacing established in the first installment as she delves deeper into the nuances of Fae politics and power. The inclusion of the Student Librarian's Handbook, however, overlaps with information revealed during the course of the novel, at times feeling redundant. Irene and Kai are faced with new challenges as the plot moves forward, buoyed by Cogman's fabulous imagined Europe. This installment lacks some of the verve of the first book, but it's still intelligent, inventive fantasy that anyone familiar with or new to the genre will enjoy.
Customer ReviewsSee All
The extra bits about the Library and the interview with the author were icing on the cake.
The Masked City
This second book in a series is uncommon in that it is substantially better than the first ( which was quite a satisfying opener itself). The plot is faster moving, even more inventive and fantastical with several wrists and turns. The alternate world this time is set in Venice during carnival ( hence the title). The protagonists this time are super powerful fae with some amusing narratives. Hilarity, suspense and action ensue.