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The Binding

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  63,806 ratings  ·  9,842 reviews
Books are dangerous things in Collins's alternate universe, a place vaguely reminiscent of 19th-century England. It's a world in which people visit book binders to rid themselves of painful or treacherous memories. Once their stories have been told and are bound between the pages of a book, the slate is wiped clean and their memories lose the power to hurt or haunt them.

Hardcover, 437 pages
Published January 10th 2019 by The Borough Press (first published January 7th 2019)
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Average rating 3.87  · 
Rating details
 ·  63,806 ratings  ·  9,842 reviews

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Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
if i could bind my memories into a book, i would start with the time i spend reading this. not because i would want to forget, but so that i could always remember. to have something tangible, documenting how spellbound i became by this story. i guess this review will have to suffice.

while this story radiates pure magic and enchantment to captivate bookworms everywhere, this is also a stunning love story. its humble and unassuming and so very touching. while i would have loved more world-buildin
h o l l i s
I'm starting to become a little disillusioned with upcoming releases by unknown or new-to-me authors. THE BINDING has an excellent marketing campaign, a gorgeous cover, and was a book I wanted to get into my hands, desperately, due to a (inaccurate) comparison to a book I love. However, for this reader, the insides don't match the outsides.

This book has three parts to it. The first act is slow, plodding, and mired in the familiar 'other characters know things but cannot tell the protagonist for
Will Byrnes
We’ve been called witches since the beginning of time. Word-cunning, they used to call it—of a piece with invoking demons…We were burned for it too. The Crusade wasn’t new, we’ve always been scapegoats. Well, knowledge is always a kind of magic, I suppose.
Emmett Farmer is a young man with issues. He used to think that he would inherit his family’s farm. It was the life he was used to and the road he expected to follow to, and beyond, the horizon. But he has not been himself lately. His abil
Dec 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Bridget Collins has written a beautifully imagined piece of fantasy historical fiction, a sumptuous love story, of poor farmer's son, Emmet Farmer, and the wealthy, privileged Lucian Darnay, doomed to be star crossed lovers. In this world, books are not what we would recognise them to be, books are for all those things that people feel destroyed by and cannot live with in their lives. They are extraordinary hand crafted, leather bound repositories of actual peoples memories, their secrets, grief ...more
Nov 24, 2018 added it
2.5 stars. I had high hopes for this book, really loved the premise, but I think it’s one of those cases that it delivered something else than promised. The idea sounded very original; people’s bad memories binded in a book, so that they don’t remember them anymore. It sounded like it has fantasy elements, some magic with interesting characters. The book is divided in 3 parts. I loved the first part, but things went into a completely different direction starting from the second part. The rest of ...more
Jun 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Magical realism is never my first choice and it is the genre I hardly ever decide to read but I never refuse a novel that manages to incorporate it into a good story. And this is a splendid example of such combination that forced me to continue reading till late hours. The idea of binding your memories into books and leaving none left is both brilliant and terrifying.
The Binding cast a spell on me that I will take some time to reverse provided I want it …
Mayim de Vries
“Liber vos liberabit - The book shall set you free”

If good marketing and stunning art cover lured you here under the pretence that you are going to read some genre-bending fantasy, you need to know that you have been deceived. This is essentially a romance (view spoiler)
ELLIAS (elliasreads)
Aug 24, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020-books, i-own
Finishes book.


*Blinks again.*

SLAMS book fucking shut.

S E E T H I N G: AGAHSKAKPZKWOAOVJWOAPWLFYCIAOWKZ— (unintelligible garble insert here). WHAT!!!!!?!?!?!,??? WAS !!!!!?!?!?!,??? THAT !!!!!?!?!?!,???


I want to give this book ONE STAR AFTER THAT ENDING. So pointless....

Stupid, stupid, s t u p i d.


Jo (The Book Geek)
I had such high hopes for this book, and I'm left feeling dreadfully disappointed. This book was overhyped, and that I'm positive of. I really couldn't wait to get my hands on this. The plot sounded intriguing and I adored the cover. Lets be honest, it is quite something, and I was kind of lured in by it.

This book consists of three parts. The first part was slow, and it really, really dragged. The second was better, as I think it is the only part of the entire book that I liked and was tolerabl
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
I don’t care. Not for me. Won it in a goodreads giveaway. Skim read because it bored me. Yay for everyone that loved it 😘

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Charlotte May
Jul 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a magical and incredibly well written novel.

Emmett is sent away by his parents to work as a Binder’s apprentice. If people want certain bad memories to be taken away they can visit a Binder and be ‘bound’. The resulting book is then kept safe so that the person will never have to relive the memories again.

But there are certain Binders who sell books, who treat the trade or its patients with zero respect. When Emmett sees a book with his name on, he wonders what secrets it holds. But t
Feb 26, 2019 rated it really liked it

This book was spellbinding and included an original concept (about books!) that I had never read before; it completely ensnared me into its pages.

The tale starts of with Emmett, a farmer from a small house in the country, plagued by nightmares which in turn effect his work. Suddenly one afternoon, he receives a letter, telling him that he must go to be a binder, a job that promotes fear, prejudice and superstition among communities.

Emmett goes to be an apprentice as a binder so that one day
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If this was a recipe it would be 1 cup romance with a teaspoon of fantasy and a sprinkling of fun . It’s a male to male romance in 1800s I’m guessing though it never specifically says, in a world where all bad memories or anything you want to forget can be binded in a book and stored safely away, or so it is supposed to be. Dun dun dunnn. I liked it I got it as an arc on a giveaways here on goodreads . I started it as soon as it came in the mail.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Apr 22, 2019 rated it liked it
I was excited to begin this book with its interesting premise and the promise of a blend of fantasy and reality. And I was not disappointed at first. I was intrigued by the Victorian style world the author created, one in which books aren’t filled with fictional stories that are for purchase, but rather, ones that are filled with memories of people who chose to have them removed from their minds by book binders. Those memories would then be kept safe in beautiful books the binders fashioned for ...more
Dannii Elle
Book binding is an art. A very real one. Collins infused her fictional binders with the additional ability to weave secrets and memories into their end papers, which freed individuals from the burdens of their guilt and fears. But with these life-altering abilities comes the fear of the other and the lurking allure of abusing this bestowed gift.

The Binding was a very different story to the one I had anticipated. The synopsis conjured a whimsical and fantastical alternate history. The book, howev

This book is my life. I am stunned by how incredible the writing was, how incredible the characters were, how incredible the storyline is. The Binding is such a unique and interesting book, and as are the ideas that fuelled this book. A book about books, and what amazing books they are. Memories, captured and preserved and taken from a person forever. To be used for good or used for evil, this idea is stunning and I loved reading about it.

And then there were the chara
Katie Lumsden
Jan 14, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Well that was incredibly brilliant in every conceivable way. It has genuinely been years since I read a book I enjoyed that much. I highly, highly recommend this one.
Aug 06, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: fairy-tale
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lauren Lanz
Sep 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbtq-rep, 4-stars
A slow start, but I'm so glad to have continued The Binding, as I ended up really enjoying the rest of the story!

“May your darkness be quiet and the light come sooner than you need,”

~★~ What is this book about? ~★~

Emmett Farmer is plagued by an illness that renders him nearly useless to his family’s livelihood. When he is requested to be a binder’s apprentice, his family believes this is a chance for Emmett to be of use somewhere. Except binders make books of people’s memories they wish to f
Jenna is buying a house and mostly too busy for GR ❤ ❀  ❤
Stephen King Wael GIF - StephenKing Wael Alomari GIFs

"Which was worse? To feel nothing, or to grieve for something you no longer remembered? Surely when you forgot, you’d forget to be sad, or what was the point? And yet that numbness would take part of your self away..."

There are times in life we all go through painful things, things we wish hadn't happened, and which make us sad and anxious, or worse, to remember. What if you could have those memories removed? What if you could choose what you remember, to keep the good and get rid of the bad
Claude's Bookzone (semi hiatus)
3.5 Stars - This was a hard decision but I am not convinced we needed the horrific descriptions of the painful memories as it was essentially a romance. For me it would have been enough to hint at the horror and then move on.

CW: There are some significant triggers in this book with some particularly distressing content.(view spoiler)
* A Reader Obsessed *
2.5 Stars

This is a world where if wanted, one could willingly bind away their worst memories into a book, forgetting and leaving them there for safe keeping for all eternity. In its best light, such an event is looked upon as a type of medical treatment, allowing a person to move on from horrors they’ve experienced like it never occurred in the first place. However, in this alternate universe, what happens most often, mainly in the upper echelons of society, depravity and evil is hidden so that
Jul 12, 2018 marked it as to-read
ugh - tell me this technology is available and sign me up, please.

also, sign me up for the book, double please.
Noha Badawi
Feb 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I got bound.
Ouuff, what a story! I was utterly spellbound from the very first words. In this universe where books are dangerous, love is passionate and stories are realities; i lost myself. If only i could bind those past two days of reading this story into a book i would; not to forget but to always remember it. I see myself re/reading this in the future because i would want to feel everything all over again.
Go in blind, and get spellbound - in every literal sense to the word.
May 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Brilliant story, very cleverly written. I liked the first 100 pages best, after that it became grim. The ending was satisfactory, but the book was completely different from what I expected and I'm still not sure if that is a good thing or not. ...more
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, lgbtq
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Some books entice you with their details , their wonderfully alluring premise, and work their way so very well into your imagination, that you are ever so sad to see them end. This was such a book.

Emmett Farmer is to become a book binder. This is no wonderful thing for him since this is a profession that is feared, filled with suspicion and ill omens, and one he is loath to consider, and yet here he is apprenticed to Seredith. She is an old binder and although Emmett has been drawn to books, he
Dark River
Jan 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I meant to write an actual review a couple days ago already, but I'm still lacking the words for the time being.
All I know is that this is one of these rare, magical books that pulled me in to take a piece of my heart and never give it back again.

It's almost impossible for most readers, me included, to name just one book when asked about a favorite title. But this one has definitely made it onto the short list I usually give people.

Title: The Binding
Series: Standalone
Author: Bridget Collins
Release date: January 7, 2019
Genre: historical fiction, fantasy

I had such high hopes for this book and I'm so disappointed that I didn't love it. When I read the synopsis it sounded like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind which is a favorite film of mine. It's about a couple who have broken up and erase each other from their memories to forget the heartbreak they suffer from. The twist on that concept is that the memories being erase

In this surprisingly emotional fantasy–literary fiction blend, books are sordid things, definitely not read, and locked away in vaults at reputable companies with names such as Lyon & Sons. Each book in this world contains the wiped memories, most often horrible, of one person. Destroy that book by fire, and restore the horrible memory. Or, in rarer instances, destroy that book and restore destroyed lives.

On the simplest level, The Binding is about same-age characters Emmett Fa
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Bridget Collins has works written under the name B.R Collins.

Articles featuring this book

Fantasy literature is arguably the single oldest genre in all of storytelling. Contemporary fantasy has its roots, overtly or not, in world...
425 likes · 111 comments
“somehow it went from too soon to too late, without the right moment in between.” 75 likes
“Memories,’ she said, at last. ‘Not people, Emmett. We take memories and bind them. Whatever people can’t bear to remember. Whatever they can’t live with. We take those memories and put them where they can’t do any harm. That’s all books are” 48 likes
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