|aYoung Emmett Farmer is working in the fields when a strange letter arrives summoning him away from his family. He is to begin an apprenticeship as a Bookbinder -- a vocation that arouses fear, superstition, and prejudice among their small community but one neither he nor his parents can afford to refuse. For as long as he can recall, Emmett has been drawn to books, even though they are strictly forbidden. Bookbinding is a sacred calling, Seredith informs her new apprentice, and he is a binder born. Under the old woman's watchful eye, Emmett learns to hand-craft the elegant leather-bound volumes. Within each one they will capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory. If there's something you want to forget, a binder can help. If there's something you need to erase, they can assist. Within the pages of the books they create, secrets are concealed and the past is locked away. In a vault under his mentor's workshop, rows upon rows of books are meticulously stored. But while Seredith is an artisan, there are others of their kind, avaricious and amoral tradesman who use their talents for dark ends -- and just as Emmett begins to settle into his new circumstances, he makes an astonishing discovery: one of the books has his name on it. Soon, everything he thought he understood about his life will be dramatically rewritten.
The most captivating novel of 2019‘Utterly brilliant’ Joanna Cannon‘Truly spellbinding’ Guardian‘Pure magic’ Erin Kelly‘A real treat’ The Times‘Gorgeous' Stella Duffy‘Astounding’ Anna MazzolaImagine you could erase your grief.Imagine you could forget your pain.Imagine you could hide a secret.Forever.Emmett Farmer is working in the fields when a letter arrives summoning him to begin an apprenticeship. He will work for a Bookbinder, a vocation that arouses fear, superstition and prejudice – but one neither he nor his parents can afford to refuse.He will learn to hand-craft beautiful volumes, and within each he will capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory. If there’s something you want to forget, he can help. If there’s something you need to erase, he can assist. Your past will be stored safely in a book and you will never remember your secret, however terrible.In a vault under his mentor’s workshop, row upon row of books – and memories – are meticulously stored and recorded.Then one day Emmett makes an astonishing discovery: one of them has his name on it.THE BINDING is an unforgettable, magical novel: a boundary-defying love story and a unique literary event.