Sunday, 28 April 2013

Book Review - Ink

Title: Ink
Author: Amanda Sun
Series: The Paper Gods (book 1)
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: 25 Jun 2013
ISBN-13: 978-0373210718

I looked down at the paper, still touching the tip of my shoe. I reached for it, flipping the page over to look.
Scrawls of ink outlined a drawing of a girl lying on a bench.
A sick feeling started to twist in my stomach, like motion sickness.
And then the girl in the drawing turned her head, and her inky eyes glared straight into mine.

On the heels of a family tragedy, the last thing Katie Greene wants to do is move halfway across the world. Stuck with her aunt in Shizuoka, Japan, Katie feels lost. Alone. She doesn’t know the language, she can barely hold a pair of chopsticks, and she can’t seem to get the hang of taking her shoes off whenever she enters a building.

Then there’s gorgeous but aloof Tomohiro, star of the school’s kendo team. How did he really get the scar on his arm? Katie isn’t prepared for the answer. But when she sees the things he draws start moving, there’s no denying the truth: Tomo has a connection to the ancient gods of Japan, and being near Katie is causing his abilities to spiral out of control. If the wrong people notice, they'll both be targets.
Katie never wanted to move to Japan—now she may not make it out of the country alive.

My Review
I recieved this book from Mira INK publishers - so thanks very much to them. I actually won it in a competition, it came with 2 other books - both of which I was desperate for, this one I hadn't heard much about but at the time I wasn't really bothered. It's been sitting on my pile for about a month. I know the release date isn't for another couple of months but I was on my way out the door the other day and wanted to take a book with me and this happened to be at hand. 
And I have to say I am very glad they sent me this copy, I really enjoyed this book, it's different, fresh and allows you to explore a whole other culture.
Set in Japan, Katie - an english girl has had to move to live with her aunt following her mother's death. Struggling to fit in a new school, a new culture and a whole new country things were never going to be easy. She's started to make friends though and is trying really hard to learn the language but then she meets Tomohiro, he's strange, mysterious and everyone says he's bad news. But Katie is drawn to him and that's when things start to get weird. 
I don't really know much about Japan but I am curious and I love to learn about different cultures, I wouldn't mind visiting Japan one day and this book gives you a real feel for the culture and some of the language. The imagery in the writing too had me visualising some beautiful scenery - especially during the blossom picnic in the park. 
Katie is a very likeable character who I think most of us can relate to, she is an outsider looking in, struggling to fit in - it's a situation a lot of us have been in, but what I really liked about Katie is her bravery, she is determined to fit in, make a good life for herself and she won't step back when things get difficult. She never gives up and even if that leads her to trouble she still drives ahead. 
Her friend Yuki and Tanaka offer a bit of lightness to the story, they are the ones behind her trying to get her to have fun, helping her to fit in and making sure she has friends around her. 
Tomohiro is the tall dark stranger, mysterious and definite bad boy aura, but then you know there is more to him and that he will be a big part of the story. Tomo has a power - whenever he draws the pictures seem to come to life off the page. The Ink holds a magic for him and somehow Katie makes it stronger. But with no idea how powerful the Ink is, or what they can do with it, they are headed for danger.
This story has the romance element running through it, but mainly you focus on the power of the Ink and the legendary history behind it. I was desperate to know more about the legend throughout and what it all meant, I got hooked into the book and didn't want to put it down.
I really liked all the references at the culture and the way it built the world around you. I also loved the Kendo part - the martial art. I take JuJitsu so recognised some of the language and terminology. We don't use sticks in our fighting but there were other similarities. I even started to pick up some of the language. 
I think this will be a big release this year, it's sure to wow it's audience. 
I'm really looking forward to more from Amanda Sun and desperate to know what happens in book 2. Shame it's so far away as technically this book isn't even out yet. 

My Rating


Annette Mills said...

I enjoy books about other cultures too. Especiall the Asian culture, for some reason. I'll put this one on my list. Thanks!

Iina said...

I've got the book on my Kindle, but I haven't started reading it yet. Maybe I should, based on your review! :)

barmybex said...

Cheers Annette, hope you enjoy it.

Lina- you definitely should get stuck in. Really worth it.