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  • The Book That Wouldn’t Burn

  • The Book That Wouldn’t Burn, Book 1
  • By: Mark Lawrence
  • Narrated by: Jessica Whittaker
  • Length: 22 hrs and 28 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (111 ratings)

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The Book That Wouldn’t Burn cover art

The Book That Wouldn’t Burn

By: Mark Lawrence
Narrated by: Jessica Whittaker
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Summary

All books, no matter their binding, will fall to dust. The stories they carry may last longer. They might outlive the paper, the library, even the language in which they were first written.

The greatest story can reach the stars . . .

This is the start of an incredible journey from the internationally bestselling author of Prince of Thorns, in which, though the pen may be mightier than the sword, blood will be spilled and cities burned…

Evar has lived his whole life trapped within a vast library, older than empires and larger than cities.

Livira has spent hers in a tiny settlement out on the Dust where nightmares stalk and no one goes.

The world has never noticed them.

That’s about to change.

As their stories spiral around each other, across worlds and time, each will unlock vast secrets about the world and themselves. This is a tale of truth and lies and hearts, and the blurring of one into another.

©2023 Mark Lawrence (P)2023 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What listeners say about The Book That Wouldn’t Burn

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Having trouble with this one

I should preface by saying that I like all of the author's other work, in fact I pre-ordered this title when it was available.

And it's not for me, don't know what it is - finding it difficult to get through chapter one. It's slow (again for me) with a series of staged events, I'll hopefully revise and update this review if I can grind through a bit more and it picks up pace. For now, as said, not for me.

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3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Only 5 star book I’ve read this year

I loved this book SM. I’m going to buy the physical copy just so I can have it, I’m so upset that it came out this year, I have to wait sooo long for book two 😭

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

ohh my godddd!

I was absolutely captivated by this book! I found myself staying up later to listen to more of it. the story is so cleverly written. I think this may just be my new favourite book. my mind is left reeling at the concepts and ideas in the story.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic, can't wait for next one.

I loved this book from the start. the quotes from the books at the start of each page and their fiction authors made me chuckle.

The story is so rich, and the twists are unexpected. It hooks you and won't let go, even at the end.

I would recommend this book to everyone!

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Devastated it's finished

Mark Lawrence has outdone himself. I always feel like he truly understands exactly what I need to read to be uplifted and brought down to earth. So inspiring. I've had a long term illness for 18 years and I feel he lives in my world. He finds adventure and meaning for me. I've properly got a lump in my throat on it ending. He reframes the heartache of living in this divided world. And makes me howl with laughter too. Cannot wait for the rest of this series. Thank you so much Mark Lawrence. Love how he gets quantum theory in here too. 👏 😍 ❤️

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

New favourite of the year

Mark is an auto-buy author for myself and this book is in my top 3 all-time favourite fantasy books.

The dual POVs were so well done and the characters jump off the page to life in my head, the joys of being a visual reader.

Evar had been very young when had been trapped in the library megastructure and he had lived there his whole life, with his found family 3 brothers and a sister. Supervised by 2 of the library's many intriguing workers.

Livira was a young duster girl who lived far away from Crath City, which holds the library. Livira's small settlement was destroyed by Sabbers (meaning enemy). Sabbers are an interesting race and I will let you find out more about them from the book, so to keep the mystery.

Livira(10) journeys across the desert and finds her friends and herself in the city. She is met by a very old Librarian called Yute and put into the trainee library class.

Livira is highly intelligent with an eidetic memory and she has a thirst for knowledge and wants to know how all things work.

She has made some enemies over the years and they are always looking for ways to hinder her progress.

Livira and Evar meet when she is 11,15 and then 20 via time-traveling portals as they are searching the vast library in different time periods. The threads of the story were woven like a tapestry through Mark's amazing gift for prose. The descriptions make the story travel at a steady pace and the main characters make you want to find out more about them and the history of the library and the races of people in the land.

The races seem to be in an endless loop of fighting, winning,losing rinse and repeat. Why and can Livira and Evar break this loop?

Some of the other side characters weren’t fully fleshed out and I look forward to getting to know them as the series continues.

What is the significance of the library and its history? Can Livira and Evar break the endless loop of fighting between races? What will happen to Livira and Evar's relationship as they continue to search the library in different time periods?

There were some nods to old friends from previous trilogies, loved this and the quotes at the start of each chapter were a blink into what was to come.

Book 2 won't be out for a year but I dearly wish I could read it now.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A book of wonder

Mark Lawrence's The Book that Wouldn't Burn, the first in his The Library Trilogy and narrated by the inestimable Jessica Whittaker, is a book of fabulous world building and fantastic time travelling.

The story follows Livira and Evar as they discover the library, each other and the world(s) they inhabit. Finding out their history is one of the themes which runs throughout the book, as is Livira's growing knowledge of the Library and its inhabitants.

Jessica Whittaker narrates very well, and you can imagine the places in your minds eye, due to her narration as well as Mark's fine prose.

If you're looking for a new book to listen to, look no further than this, you won't be disappointed.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A cracking listen

A quote from JR Heartly!!! Must be good 🌟

Slowly blows your mind as you are sucked into the world of the Library.

A heroine lead in a fantasy book, cool. Resonates with my 15 year old daughter.

Dare I say that this should be on the school curriculum ....you wouldn't be able to stop the kids loving it.

And relevant to life today in so many ways challenging the listener to confront social issues of our day through a fantasy world.

Remember (as I understand it) it's 1st part of a trilogy....youll be spending your future credits to find out what happens 😬

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

5 hours in and nothings happened. Where's the hook?

Giving up on this one after 5 hours. Nothing eventful has happened. There's no hook yet, no plot. Maybe it picks up later but I'm so utterly bored I can't continue.

The narration cadence is all over the place. The pacing is poor and there's several very clear hard cuts where the narrator has clearly made a mistake and gone back. But these haven't been spliced in correctly or audio balanced so there's either to long or short of a pause and a drastic change in volume.

I've been a fan of Mark Lawrence for years, but this one's miss.

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

tedium

I've read all of the author's other books but just could not get into this.

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