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Collecting books can be a dangerous job!
What is the Invisible Library series about?
Written by Genevieve Cogman (Scarlet), the Invisible Library is a series of fantasy sci-fi spy adventure novels about very dangerous books.
The story focuses on Irene, a professional spy for the mysterious Library, a shadowy organization that collects important works of fiction from all of the different realities.
Working with her apprentice Kai, a dragon of royal descent, Irene jumps from one reality to the other to stop catastrophic events from happening.
How to read The Invisible Library Series in Order?
Each novel in the Invisible Library series is delivering a standalone story that built on the previous one. It’s better to read them in order.
- The Invisible Library – Irene and her enigmatic assistant Kai have been sent to an alternative London. Their mission: Retrieve a particularly dangerous book. The problem: By the time they arrive, it’s already been stolen. London’s underground factions are prepared to fight to the death to find the tome before Irene and Kai do, a problem compounded by the fact that this world is chaos-infested—the laws of nature bent to allow supernatural creatures and unpredictable magic to run rampant. To make matters worse, Kai is hiding something—secrets that could be just as volatile as the chaos-filled world itself.
- The Masked City – When her apprentice, Kai—a dragon of royal descent—is kidnapped by the Fae, Irene’s 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.
- The Burning Page – Librarian spy Irene has standards to maintain, especially while on probation. And absconding from a mission via a besieged building doesn’t look good. But when her escape route home goes up in flames, what’s a spy to do? However, it seems gates back to the Library are malfunctioning across dozens of worlds. Worse still, her nemesis Alberich is responsible—and he plans to annihilate the Library itself.
- The Lost Plot – In a 1920s-esque New York, Prohibition is in force; fedoras, flapper dresses, and tommy guns are in fashion: and intrigue is afoot. Intrepid Librarians Irene and Kai find themselves caught in the middle of a dragon political contest. It seems a young Librarian has become tangled in this conflict, and if they can’t extricate him, there could be serious repercussions for the mysterious Library. And, as the balance of power across mighty factions hangs in the balance, this could even trigger war.
- The Mortal Word – When Irene returns to London after a relatively straightforward book theft in Germany, Bradamant informs her that there is a top-secret dragon-Fae peace conference in progress that the Library is mediating, and that the second-in-command dragon has been stabbed to death. Tasked with solving the case, Vale and Irene immediately go to 1890s Paris to start their investigation.
- The Secret Chapter – The world where Irene grew up is in danger of veering into chaos – so she needs to obtain a particular book to stop this from happening. And the only copy of the edition they need is in the hands of a notorious Fae broker and trader in rare objects: Mr Nemo. Irene and Kai make their way to Mr Nemo’s remote Caribbean island, and are invited to dinner – which includes unlikely company. And Mr Nemo has an offer for everyone there. He wants them to form a team to steal a specific painting from a specific world. And he swears that he will give Irene the book she seeks if she joins them – but only if he has the painting within the week.
- The Dark Archive – Irene is teaching her new assistant the fundamentals of a Librarian’s job, and finding that training a young Fae is more difficult than she expected. But when they’re the targets of kidnapping and assassination attempts, she decides that learning by doing is the only option they have left … In order to protect themselves, Irene and her friends must do what they do best: search for information to defeat the overwhelming threat they face and identify their unseen enemy.
- The Untold Story – Irene is trying to learn the truth about Alberich-and the possibility that he’s her father. But when the Library orders her to kill him, and then Alberich himself offers to sign a truce, she has to discover why he originally betrayed the Library. With her allies endangered and her strongest loyalties under threat, she’ll have to trace his past across multiple worlds and into the depths of mythology and folklore, to find the truth at the heart of the Library, and why the Library was first created.
If you like our article about reading the Invisible Library series in order, don’t forget to bookmark it! Also, you may want to take a look at Ben Aaronovitch’s Reivers of London and Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next.