Ink is an enchanting, well-written, and deliciously dark story that will pull readers into a beautiful and dangerous world, one they won’t want to leave. Amanda Sun has crafted a brilliant and refreshing mythology, and delivers a magical setting. Readers will be swept away by Japan’s beauty and Ms. Sun’s artful descriptions.
Katie makes for a wonderful narrator. She’s funny, vulnerable, and strong-headed. I liked that she never backs down and is always ready to join the fight to protect those she cares about. Her relationship with Tomohiro is tumultuous, yet enthralling, and I loved the banter between them.
Ms. Sun has created an utterly unique and splendid mythology revolving around ancient Japanese gods and their descendants, and I absolutely loved this aspect of the book. The mythology is exquisite and reminiscent of Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone and is sure to draw readers in and leave them hungry for more.
The author unravels the plot at a fluid, even pace and skillfully combines Katie’s more mundane activities with her fantastical and dangerous ones with Tomohiro and his powers. This combination results in a great balance in tone and plot development. The dialogue is smooth and believable, and it was fun learning a few Japanese terms along the way. I do wish some of Ms. Sun’s character descriptions weren’t repeated as often as they are, but overall she is a very skilled writer.
One of my other favorite elements of the book are the illustrations. While they are sparse, they provide an extra dash of magic to the overall product and work well with the story.
Overall, Ink is a fantastic debut and I cannot wait for the sequel. Amanda Sun has created a stunningly beautiful piece of art and is sure to enchant readers with her work. She is definitely an author to watch!
Update: A shortened, alternate version of my review of Ink will appear in the Summer 2013 IndieBound Kid’s Next List! Check out the new version below:
“Ink is an enchanting, well-written, and deliciously dark story that will pull readers into a beautiful and dangerous world, one they won’t want to leave. Sun has crafted a brilliant and refreshing mythology revolving around ancient Japanese gods and their descendents, in a magical setting. Readers will be swept away by Japan’s beauty and Sun’s artful descriptions.” (Source)