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The Binding

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3.87  ·  Rating details ·  13,195 ratings  ·  2,642 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. ...more
Hardcover, 437 pages
Published January 10th 2019 by The Borough Press
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Average rating 3.87  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,195 ratings  ·  2,642 reviews


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Paromjit
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, ...more
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
...more
Beata
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 …
Amalia Gavea
‘’I laid my hand over the bruises on my arm, fitting my fingers into the marks. The wind murmured in the thatch and drove another gust of rain against the window-pane, but the house was thick-walled, solid, as old as rock. Binder’s fever, not madness or weakness.’’

Emmett is suffering from a strange affliction. His parents are of little help, engrossed in how to find a wealthy husband for his sister, absorbed by their wish for money without even trying. When a strange call arrives, Emmett has to
...more
Hollis
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
...more
Umut Reviews
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
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
Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘
Feb 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ by: Emer (A Little Haze)
thebinding3

The premise of The Binding in one sentence : terrible people are terrible, and when I say terrible what I really mean is everyone. It's terribly gruesome and disturbing at times and portrays abuse in many shapes, yet I couldn't look away. For the past few days, I've been wondering why I was so damn affected by a novel that many of my friends found lacking. Yet I'm pretty sure that the sense of dread I felt came from how very realistic the horrors pictured were : you can wrap up abuse with a
...more
Lucy Langford
Feb 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
4****

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
...more
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
...more
Jillian
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. ...more
Beverly
Aug 06, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: fairy-tale
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emer (A Little Haze)
I FREAKING LOVED THIS!

Historical fiction mixed with folklore and magical realism, and a love story that gave me all of the feels!!!!!!!! YASSSSSS. Do yourself a favour and read it.

Perfect for people who liked The Thirteenth Tale or The Shadow of the Wind

ONE FAULT THOUGH
The freaking blurb on the back cover gave away a plot line that didn't occur until page 161.... Like I get that I probs would have figured it out anyway BUT STILL! Robbed me of some of my fun so bah humbug to you blurb writing
...more
Jojo
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
...more
Jenna
Jun 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, lgbtq
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?
...more
Katie.dorny
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
karen
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.
Caroline
***NO SPOILERS***

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
...more
Marialyce
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
...more
Ingrid
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.
Donna
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
Ana
Well, this was a surprise!

‘Emmett,’ he said, ‘don’t ever let me see you with a book again. You understand?’
I didn’t. What had happened? I’d bought it, I hadn’t stolen it, but somehow I had done something unforgivable.


The Binding is far from perfect and, in some particular aspects, it barely scratches the surface, but I am forever fascinated with stories that deal with the subject of memory loss and its consequences and, in this, Collins’s fantasy novel is extraordinarily unique.

At the
...more
Lou
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Binding, Bridget Collins's first adult novel, is a book full of wonderful magic and searing heartache. A special hybrid of fantasy and historical fiction, it is a sumptuous and emotional affair which is substantial in its sincerity and exquisite in its writing. The premise, that memories you wished to be forgotten can be bound and effectively erased from a person's life, is a unique one and one I was on board with from the beginning. But this original concept is not the end of the story as ...more
Liz Barnsley
Dec 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very difficult book to review this, without giving away the secrets that make it pure magic on the page, but let’s see how we go.
Imagine if you could bind away your memories in a book – once written and bound you forget. You can leave the bad behind. Is that good? Or would it empty you of that which makes you who you are..
Emmett has been unwell, a fever of the mind, when he is called to learn the trade of the bookbinder. So begins an unusual love story, a speculative fantasy tale, a beautifully
...more
Christie«SHBBblogger»

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
...more
Jane
Jan 29, 2019 rated it liked it
I was drawn to this book by its intriguing title, by its beautiful cover, and by the promise of a story in which books were fundamental. They were but they were books quite unlike any that I had ever read. They were books that held dark secrets and unhappy memories; drawn out from peoples minds and bound into the elegant leather-bound volumes by Bookbinders, so that memories were erased, secrets were concealed and the troublesome pasts were securely locked away.

The story was set in a place
...more
Tanja Berg
Jan 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
I picked this book up at the airport on Friday. It was lying by itself and I was drawn to the beautiful binding. The sheer beauty of it and the promising blurb made me pick it up. It seemed to hold the promise of magic.

I didn't really find magic. I found a broken boy, Emmet, who is being sent of to become apprentice to a binder. That means that he is to bind people's memories into books, making them forget terrible things they did or were exposed to. Not that he knows this. He doesn't know much
...more
Lisa Vegan
I knew a bit going in and this is one time I’m glad I did. Early on a shelf I saw on my friend’s shelving gave me a huge hint about one detail and I guess I’m okay with that too, even though it took a while to be sure of what was precisely going on. I did quickly figure out some things on my own. Other things I kept guessing which was fun. The detailed reveals never disappointed me.

I enjoyed the writing and storytelling style.

For me it started off a bit slow but as I read on it became a quicker
...more
Cendaquenta
I adored this book. Truly. I'm honestly struggling for words to talk about it.
I was so deeply invested in this story that the scenes played through my mind like a movie and, were I an artist, I could draw every setting. So deeply invested that a tragic moment left me short of breath and tearful. Of course, I have at least some level of investment and interest in every book I read, otherwise I wouldn't be reading them, but the most recent book that comes to mind which affected me this strongly is
...more
Brenda Waworga
Mar 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Im so glad i love The Binding story as much as i love the cover!! this was a total cover buy book and dive into this knowing nothing about this book and basically just expected nothing too

This book is kinda a mixed between Historical Magical Realism and Romance set in Victorian era and i love it

The Story divided into 3 Parts.. Part 1 about the Magic system where people can bind their memory (mostly memory they dont want to remember) onto a book!, this part is slow and so eerie it took quite a
...more
Darce
H O L Y
S H I R T B A L L S

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
...more
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Bridget Collins has works written under the name B.R Collins.
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“Who the hell are you?"
"I'm the witch's apprentice. Who the hell are you?”
13 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” 8 likes
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