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Search - Ex-Libris

Author: Ross King
A cryptic summons to a remote country house launches Isaac Inchbold, a London bookseller and antiquarian, on an odyssey through seventeenth-century Europe. Charged with the task of restoring a magnificent library destroyed by the war, Inchbold moves between Prague and the Tower Bridge in London, his fortunes-and his life-hanging on his ability t...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780142000809
ISBN-10: 0142000809
Publication Date: 5/28/2002
Pages: 400
  • Currently 3.1/5 Stars.

3.1 stars, based on 27 ratings
Publisher: Penguin (Non-Classics)
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Ex-Libris on + 44 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 10
A historical thriller set in 1660. An unimposing book seller is sent on a journey to find a missing manuscript. Alternating with the chapters about his search are the chapters about the beginning of the mystery - the stage being set about 40 years before. Many of the characters mentioned in the later part of the story and alive and active in the earlier part of the story.

There are all the elements of a historical thriller: clues, mystery, killings, puzzles to be solved, travel from place to place to secure enough clues to solve the mysteries and puzzles.

Involved also are elements of British history from the mid 17th Century: kings, deposition of kings, revolutions, Protestant vs. Catholic. The means of transit - coaches, barges, all sorts of boats - are specific to the time and place and described in detail.

Also described in detail are books - how they are bound, stored, made, taken apart and repaired.

I am glad of other books I've read over the years that had given me some background for this one: 1632 (fiction about the 30 years war), the Book on the Bookshelf (history of the book - non-fiction).

Although this is a genre I enjoy usually, this book was interesting, but not gripping. It was easy to put it down and engage in other activities.
JujuGirl avatar reviewed Ex-Libris on + 88 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 8
What a treat to read a book by an author who can write well! And not only do the words flow across the pages, but the story is full of historical details that make this time period in Europe very real. I loved the mysterious adventure that the main character, Isaac Inchbold, was unwittingly pulled into, though at times I got lost between the shifting scenes.
esthera avatar reviewed Ex-Libris on + 8 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I did not finish this book - it moved too slowly for me.
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philomene avatar reviewed Ex-Libris on + 23 more book reviews
King weaves a rich tapestry with epic battles, rare manuscripts, the sack of ancient libraries and more into a compelling and fascinating tale. Though overly complex at times, I found it well worth the effort.


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