GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Double Book Review: The Library of the Unwritten (A Novel from Hell's Library Book 1) by A. J. Hackwith | I Smell Sheep

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Double Book Review: The Library of the Unwritten (A Novel from Hell's Library Book 1) by A. J. Hackwith

by A. J. Hackwith
October 1, 2019
384 pages
Publisher: Ace
In the first book in a brilliant new fantasy series, books that aren't finished by their authors reside in the Library of the Unwritten in Hell, and it is up to the Librarian to track down any restless characters who emerge from those unfinished stories.

Many years ago, Claire was named Head Librarian of the Unwritten Wing-- a neutral space in Hell where all the stories unfinished by their authors reside. Her job consists mainly of repairing and organizing books, but also of keeping an eye on restless stories that risk materializing as characters and escaping the library. When a Hero escapes from his book and goes in search of his author, Claire must track and capture him with the help of former muse and current assistant Brevity and nervous demon courier Leto.

But what should have been a simple retrieval goes horrifyingly wrong when the terrifyingly angelic Ramiel attacks them, convinced that they hold the Devil's Bible. The text of the Devil's Bible is a powerful weapon in the power struggle between Heaven and Hell, so it falls to the librarians to find a book with the power to reshape the boundaries between Heaven, Hell….and Earth.

Jeanie G Review
5 “story changing” sheep for me!

I started writing this review after the first chapter! This is my note: “LOVED, LOVED the first chapter! Great characters and setting. A library that keeps all unfinished works of authors (dead or alive) protected as if they were living things has me hooked.”

I am also afraid to write this review for fear of being literally and grammatically judged by the author....ha....but seriously, the writing, scene-setting, character building, and storyline is exemplary. I was in awe and that is reserved for very few books I read.

Just a couple short sample excerpts:

“No story is insignificant. That’s what the existence of the Unwritten Wing teaches us. No escapist fantasy, no far-off dream, no remembered suffering. Every story has meaning, has power. Every story has the power to sustain, the power to destroy, the power to create.”

“The trouble with reading is it goes to your head. Read too many books and you get savvy. You begin to think you know which kind of story you’re in. Then some stupid git with a cosmic quill fucks you over.”
Now, these samples are just chapter introductions relevant to the characters. The story is located in one of Hell’s libraries. Books might take on their own characteristics and if loved enough by their author’s may birth one of their characters into reality. That’s where problems arise and the librarians, through the beginning of time, have lived to prevent this occurrence from changing the story itself.

So much subtext, human emotions, thought-provoking prose that it is hard to adequately describe how this author seems to have an uncanny ability to see inside the psyche of authors, readers, and stories. It still includes great characters, suspense, danger, attraction, and heartbreak all the while doling out some life lessons.

Run as fast as you can and catch this story! True readers and wannabe authors will be delighted they did for “No story, written or unwritten, is static”.

Pamela K. Kinney Review
5 bookish Sheep.
Claire was named Head Librarian of the library in Hell that holds unwritten manuscripts of writers who never wrote or finished their stories. She takes care of them and keeps an eye on the heroes and damsels who might try to escape. A character named Hero does escape and heads to Earth to seek his author and inspire her to write. Claire, along with her assistant, a muse named Brevity and a young demon named Leto go after him. Ramiel, an angel from Heaven attacks them, thinking they hold the codex of the Devil’s Bible and not Hero’s book. Claire must find this codex which holds the power to reshape boundaries between Heaven, Earth, and Hell, while pursued by Ramiel and the Archangel Uriel. 

If really enjoyed this story. Especially when the characters grow, finding themselves or their true selves. If you enjoy anything about books, libraries, stories on Heaven or Hell, angels and devils, dark fantasy, you will enjoy this book. It’s perfect autumn, and Halloween reading.

About the Author:
A. J. Hackwith is a magpie of ink, bad ideas, and spite. She's a queer writer of fantasy and science fiction in Seattle. Her stories have appeared in various anthologies and Uncanny magazine. You can find her as @ajhackwith on Twitter and other dark corners of the internet.

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