The Library At Mount Char by Scott Hawkins (2 out of 5)

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I received a copy of this book for free through Blogging For Books, in return for a honest review.

This book was sitting on top of our hardcover fiction for a few weeks- the first thing I did yesterday was ask my assistant manager to move it to science fiction. This book is definitely not like anything I read before, and I doubt I’ll read anything like it again. And I REALLY liked it for that reason. The characters are well written. It’s the plot that completely lost me. I know that’s part of the lure of the book, but it didn’t help this reader dig it any more. In fact, the opposite effect is what came about. By the time I got through with it, I was completely disenchanted with the very unique premise which was the thing that drew me to it in the first place. I’m sure someone out there is going to read this book and truly champion its cause; unfortunately, it won’t be me. And NOT for lack of interest, either. More for lack of execution.

Carolyn, our main character of the “librarians” at Mount Char, used to be a normal girl. She still likes going to the bar and having a drink and a cigarette; she still dreams of the perfect guacamole. Nothing else is normal about Carolyn, however. She’s part of a group of people who were “adopted” by an evil, taunting deity they call “Father”. “Father” is some sort of almost mythical human being. He can do all sorts of wild and then often shady things, things that Carolyn and several of her fellow “siblings” begin to question. Her new upbringing is centered around the teachings of the Pelapi, which her father believes and lives by. All of the books in the library are teachings of the ways of the Pelapi. Carolyn and her “family” know them by heart (the usage of ” ” throughout the review is simply because the words they are around are merely NOT what they seem, so that’s what I’ve done to make the person reading the review aware of that fact). They have no idea who their “Father” really is, but his cruel and often mocking nature make them all wonder if he is THE God. Things go slightly off-center for the group when their “Father” disappears. As they really do not know Life as they used to know it, they wonder whether they should flee (well, at least Carolyn does), kill off one another, find him, or dance the Macarena. If this dude is a goner, which of the librarians gets to take control of the ever powerful library (I never quite got why this library is an all encompassing mass of power, supernatural or not. I was just confused). Of course, those who have been quietly contemplating a switch of power should this happen decide they want to take control of that library. Now Carolyn, who suddenly decided she wants a crack at being the headmistress, library goddess, whatever, of the library at Mount Char, has a true fight on her hands. That, my friends, is the majority of what goes down in this book. It goes here, it goes there, it goes nowhere. I wish I could have given it a better review, I just can’t. I did enjoy the characters of Carolyn and Steve, because they seemed to be the only true people with human emotions in this twisted, compelling narrative. For as much as I wanted to chuck it out the window, the story lures you in and keeps you trapped- kind of like the librarians. Except in this scenario, you can set the book down and walk away.

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~ by generationgbooks on July 23, 2015.

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