The Binding - Bridget Collins

The Binding

By Bridget Collins

  • Release Date: 2019-01-07
  • Genre: Historical
Score: 4
From 358 Ratings



‘Brilliant’ Joanna Cannon
‘Spellbinding’ Guardian
‘Magic’ Erin Kelly
‘Immersive’ Sunday Times
‘Gorgeous' Stella Duffy
‘Astounding’ Anna Mazzola

Emmett Farmer is a binder’s apprentice. His job is to hand-craft beautiful books and, within each, to capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory.
If you have something you want to forget, or a secret to hide, he can bind it – and you will never have to remember the pain it caused.
In a vault under his mentor’s workshop, row upon row of books – and secrets – are meticulously stored and recorded.
Then one day Emmett makes an astonishing discovery: one of the volumes has his name on it.


‘The Binding is a dark chocolate slice of cake with a surprising, satisfying seam of raspberry running through it. It is a rich, gothic entertainment that explores what books have trapped in them and reminds us of the power of storytelling. Spellbinding’ Tracy Chevalier

‘Truly spellbinding … readers will sink gratefully into the pleasures of its pages … Like a wonderful meal made from a few simple ingredients: the feeling in your chest when you hold someone in your arms for the first time; the sight of a host of bluebells. In recent years, the state of the world has threatened to make us forget the simple pleasures of kisses and bluebells and thick novels that tell stories of heartbreak. Here is a book to help us remember’ Guardian

‘Intense, immersive … A stirring, highly original piece of storytelling and world-making’ Sunday Times

‘With a twisting narrative that explores humans’ darkest moments and morals, Collins has created a fascinating fantasy world that evokes the atmosphere of Sarah Waters’ books with a nod to Philip Pullman. And, with a love story holding much of the story’s emotion together, this is definitely a book you’ll want to lose yourself to for hours on end’ Stylist

‘Part fantasy, part faux-history, part heart-in-your throat love story, it’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind meets The Miniaturist’ Grazia

‘More of an experience than a book, written with such grace and wisdom. Utterly brilliant’ Joanna Cannon, author of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep

‘Pure magic. The kind of immersive storytelling that makes you forget your own name. I wish I had written it’ Erin Kelly, author of He Said/She Said

‘An original concept, beautifully written. Collins’ prose is spellbinding’ Laura Purcell, author of The Silent Companions

‘A real treat … gothic, imaginative and dark’ The Times

About the author

Bridget Collins trained as an actor at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art after reading English at King's College, Cambridge. She is the author of seven acclaimed books for young adults and has had two plays produced, one at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The Binding, her first adult novel, was a no. 1 Sunday Times bestseller.


  • Great book with a surprise twist

    By Doug82
    Overall this book is great. Slow to start and build character depth, however the twists within the book are unexpected but leave you wanting more. Would have wanted to find out more information about the two main characters and their futures! The author has allowed the reader to develop their own complete ending and my mind cannot stop thinking about the possibilities. I would highly recommend this book.
  • A gripping read

    By Holliewollydoodle
    I’m really glad I started this book on the off chance. It’s not a genre I would ordinarily read but I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it hard to put down from the middle onwards. A great book full of surprise and excitement.
  • The Binding

    By SarLou82
    A real slow burner. Took ages to get to the real stories, but once it did was difficult to put down! interesting concept
  • Magical

    By p x 97
    I don’t usually read books in this genre, but I was captivated from start to finish! A truly beautiful story and world with equally wonderful characters.
  • Captured from the beginning

    By hannah24xo
    Absolutely excellent read. The faux history and fantasy combined together and the inclusion of a forbidden love with the two lovers forced to forget each one existed. I noticed some have commented on the ending that it was flat but I am hoping that there will be a sequel and that’s why it has been left on an ambiguous note...?
  • Not what I expected

    By MrscrispyC
    I’ve enjoyed aspects of this book. The plot twists are unusual and definitely unexpected. However the conclusion felt a little lack lustre. Still worth a read as it gave a mystical side to the standard historical fiction books!
  • The Binding by Bridget Collins

    By CollegeLass
    Fascinating concept, beautifully written, but a rather flat ending.
  • Captivating

    By Jmkc1983
    Full of yearning and dramatic tension; I didn't want it to end!
  • The best romance novel I’ve ever heard

    By VSStainton
    A absolutely beautiful book, a pure joy to ‘read’ - I was transported to another world and gripped from start to finish - breathtaking, heart pounding, joyful, despairing, suspenseful, everything a book of fiction should be. I was so wrapped up within Emmet and Lucien’s world and rooting for their love to be rediscovered and rekindled - I was literally on the edge of my seat on more than one occasion, waiting and urging them on with baited breath - it’s the first book in a very long time, I’ve wanted to read immediately after finishing. I think the reader, CP needs a huge ‘thank you’ for bringing our heroes to life - I fell in love with them thanks to you ! Wonderful reading and writing!