#BookReview The Librarian of Burned Books by Brianna Labuskes @brilabuskes @HarperCollinsCa @Bookclubbish #BooksofHCC #TheLibrarianofBurnedBooks #BriannaLabuskes #Paid #Ad #Sponsored Title: The Librarian of Burned Books

Author: Brianna Labuskes

Published by: William Morrow on Feb. 21, 2023

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 416

Format: ARC, Paperback

Source: HarperCollins Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

Berlin 1933. Following the success of her debut novel, American writer Althea James receives an invitation from Joseph Goebbels himself to participate in a culture exchange program in Germany. For a girl from a small town in Maine, 1933 Berlin seems to be sparklingly cosmopolitan, blossoming in the midst of a great change with the charismatic new chancellor at the helm. Then Althea meets a beautiful woman who promises to show her the real Berlin, and soon she’s drawn into a group of resisters who make her question everything she knows about her hosts–and herself.

Paris 1936. She may have escaped Berlin for Paris, but Hannah Brecht discovers the City of Light is no refuge from the anti-Semitism and Nazi sympathizers she thought she left behind. Heartbroken and tormented by the role she played in the betrayal that destroyed her family, Hannah throws herself into her work at the German Library of Burned Books. Through the quiet power of books, she believes she can help counter the tide of fascism she sees rising across Europe and atone for her mistakes. But when a dear friend decides actions will speak louder than words, Hannah must decide what stories she is willing to live–or die–for.

New York 1944. Since her husband Edward was killed fighting the Nazis, Vivian Childs has been waging her own war: preventing a powerful senator’s attempts to censor the Armed Service Editions, portable paperbacks that are shipped by the millions to soldiers overseas. Viv knows just how much they mean to the men through the letters she receives–including the last one she got from Edward. She also knows the only way to win this battle is to counter the senator’s propaganda with a story of her own–at the heart of which lies the reclusive and mysterious woman tending the American Library of Nazi-Banned Books in Brooklyn.

As Viv unknowingly brings her censorship fight crashing into the secrets of the recent past, the fates of these three women will converge, changing all of them forever.

Inspired by the true story of the Council of Books in Wartime–the WWII organization founded by booksellers, publishers, librarians, and authors to use books as “weapons in the war of ideas”–The Librarian of Burned Books is an unforgettable historical novel, a haunting love story, and a testament to the beauty, power, and goodness of the written word.


Insightful, rich, and affecting!

The Librarian of Burned Books is an absorbing, intense tale set during prewar Berlin and Paris, as well as New York City during the latter part of WWII, that takes you into the lives of three women who all come from different backgrounds and with completely different motivations but whose worlds become uniquely connected and intertwined when they all find themselves working together to stop the censorship of books being sent to the troops fighting overseas.

The prose is polished and expressive. The characters are vulnerable, intriguing, and strong. And the plot is a compelling tale of life, loss, love, family, friendship, sacrifice, courage, secrets, deception, betrayal, oppression, resistance, and survival.

Overall, The Librarian of Burned Books is a well-written, vivid, informative tale by Labuskes inspired by real-life events that does an exceptional job of highlighting her considerable knowledge and impressive research into an organization that was determined to show the power and importance of the written word to uplift and provide hope in even the most horrific situations.


This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.




Thank you to Harper Collins Canada for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.


About Brianna Labuskes

Wall Street Journal, Amazon Charts and Washington Post best-selling author.

Bri loves reading and writing in two of her favorite genres: psychological thrillers and historical fiction. She got her start in romance with a small publisher and still adores swoon-worthy meet-cutes. You can find that strong sense of relationship-building in all of Bri’s work. She spent the first decade-plus-change of her career in D.C. journalism and thus knows too much about the Ways & Means Committee as well as the best way to avoid traffic on the Beltway. She now lives in Asheville, N.C., with her pup, Jinx.

Her last name is pronounced La-bus-kiss (it’s okay, no one gets it right!)

You can find Bri on Twitter, where she’ll most likely be recommending her latest read, or on Instagram posting pictures of her pup.

She loves hearing from readers most of all, so feel free to send her a message.

Photo courtesy of Amazon.com.