Book Reviews

The Memory of Babel by Christelle Dabos

Have I mentioned how I cannot get enough of The Mirror Visitor series? Each book has created brand new worlds and concepts and characters, and I just want more! I’m pleased that there’s only one book left in the series, but I also don’t want it to end yet. The Memory of Babel left me on such a cliffhanger, and I can’t get my hands on the final book until September. This is why I don’t watch TV shows “live” as they come out. I just need things to resolve.

The Story

In the gripping third volume of Christelle Dabos’s best-selling saga, Ophelia, the mirror-travelling heroine, finds herself in the magical city of Babel, guarding a secret that may provide a key both to the past and the future.

After two years and seven months biding her time on Anima, her home ark, it is finally time to act, to put what she has discovered in the Book of Faruk to good use. Under an assumed identity she travels to Babel, a cosmopolitan and thoroughly modern ark that is the jewel of the universe, and where automata have taken over the most humble jobs from humans. But under the surface of this pacific and orderly ark social unrest stirs, fed by the memories of a fateful purge long ago, and the inhabitants’ growing fear of being replaced altogether. Will Ophelia’s talent as a reader suffice to avoid her being lured into a deadly trap by her ever more fearful adversaries? Will she ever see Thorn, her betrothed, again?

My Thoughts

For starters, I hate (and love) book cliffhangers! VE Schwab gave a pretty big one in the Shades of Magic series, but I managed to have the full trilogy on hand so I was not left hanging. With The Memory of Babel, I have to wait MONTHS before this will be resolved.

I did not realize there was a 2+ year gap between books two and three. In that sense, I don’t feel that the characters developed quite enough for that span of time. There was some growth and development, but not what I was expecting. In fact, there’s part of the story where Ophelia realizes how much she hasn’t moved forward in the last two years.

We also briefly meet Archibald, Gail, and Fox in a Compass Rose. Ophelia goes her own way, and Aunt Rosaline travels back to Clairedelune with the rest. These characters are BARELY in the story. It comes back to the why in the end, but it felt a bit strange. It broke up the Babel story in strange places.

I said in my review of The Missing of Clairedelune that I just wanted Thorn and Ophelia to be together. I needed that love story to come together. There is some redemption in the third novel, but I won’t spoil too much of it.

The Memory of Babel was my favorite of the series so far. I gave it a full five star rating, and it majorly deserved it.

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