Codex Born (#2)

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Hugo winner Jim C. Hines’s hilarious and clever Magic ex Libris series, where books come alive and libriomancer Isaac Vainio combats magical threats that spring from the page

Five hundred years ago, Johannes Gutenberg discovered the art of libriomancy, allowing him to reach into books to create things from their pages. Gutenberg’s power brought him many enemies, and some of those enemies have waited centuries for revenge. Revenge which begins with the brutal slaughter of a wendigo in the northern Michigan town of Tamarack, a long-established werewolf territory.

Libriomancer Isaac Vainio is part of Die Zwelf Portenære, better known as the Porters, the organization founded by Gutenberg to protect the world from magical threats. Isaac is called in to investigate the killing, along with Porter psychiatrist Nidhi Shah and their dryad bodyguard and lover, Lena Greenwood. Born decades ago from the pages of a pulp fantasy novel, Lena was created to be the ultimate fantasy woman, strong and deadly, but shaped by the needs and desires of her companions. Her powers are unique, and Gutenberg’s enemies hope to use those powers for themselves. But their plan could unleash a far darker evil…


“Hines supplies everything a reader needs—werewolves, ghosts, robot insects, a fire spider that eats candy, and homages to classic SF—for a very good time.”

Publishers Weekly

“The sequel to Libriomancer delivers more pulp fantasy action that’s infused with a genuine love for books and for creating unusual—and unusually likable—characters. Bibliophiles and fantasy enthusiasts will enjoy the author’s intelligent approach to both magic and literature.”

Library Journal

“Here’s everything you need to know about CODEX BORN: You have to read it if you like books at all […] It’s about the magic and the power of reading. It’s about power, and ethics, and knowing and owning yourself. It’s about sonic screwdrivers and pet spiders who burst into flames when they sense danger and vampires and werewolves and robots and the poetry of Emily Dickinson. It’s amazing.”

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

“[Hines] writes joyously for the delight of his specific market […] and the supporting cast of characters is extremely well developed.”

RT Book Reviews

“It’s great fun to see just what Isaac and his enemies will come up with next, and Isaac’s very non-standard romance adds both humor and emotion.”


“CODEX BORN is a book written by someone who genuinely loves the science fiction and fantasy genre […] It builds on what’s come before and delivers a thoroughly entertaining adventure. It’s urban fantasy built on top of numerous other layers of fiction, and Hines has just scratched the surface of what he can do. And I can’t wait to see what comes next.”

"Superior worldbuilding."

Charlaine Harris, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Sookie Stackhouse series

Awards & Accolades


#6 Locus Bestseller List