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Thursday, May 30, 2013

Review: Ink by Amanda Sun

Publication Date: June 25, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Series: Paper Gods #1
Young Adult
Pages: 377
Genre: Mythology, Paranormal, Romance

"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.
*Digital galley was provided by Harlequin Teen for an honest review*

Gosh, this was the breath of fresh air that I needed. Novels about Japan happen to be a guilt pleasure of mine. Ever since high school I'd been enamored with the culture and the language of the country. Now in college, I've begun to learn the language so seeing the vernacular phrases and glimpses of words and knowing what they meant without having to see the glossary in the back of the novel had me feeling extremely proud of myself. And hopefully in the spring semester of my Junior year I will be studying abroad in the beautiful country of Nihon, so Ink plucked hard at my heart strings and the urging want to be there sooner.

I loved it.

When Katie is thrown into the culture shock of Japan after her mother's tragic death with an entire language and culture barrier, she didn't think anything could be worse than not fitting in with the locals. She'd never thought that she'd find drawings that moves or a boy who could make them move. Tomohiro, mysterious and rude to Katie, tries to keep the curious American girl away for her own good. Too bad that the more Katie snoops and demands information on why his drawings move, the unexpected starts to blossom between the two. But Tomohiro's drawings aren't what Katie should be worrying about, because when the Yakuza have a gleaming eye on the young god the signs for dangerous should be lighting up faster than the spark of a flame.

What kind of story would we have if Katie just let Tomohiro be on his merry way? There is a need for persistence and stalking in order to let us know why those drawings in the book can move. Albeit, it could have been done a little more cleanly and nicely rather than really having Katie really going out of her way to stalk and question the poor guy.

I adored the fact that Ink was littered with artwork between chapter pages, in the footer that you could play like a flipbook, and in the text itself. Without the gracing presence of the artwork in the book there would be an essence lacking. A book based on drawings without some sort of drawing would have the novel lacking in creativity points. I happened to love the little bird flying in the corner. Pictures that move, even giving that gift to the reader gave me a more personal feel to the story. I could be a paper god in my own right, too.

Final Summation: This was completely my novel. And if you have the same feelings about Japan as I do, than this is your novel. Beautiful on the inside and out, INK enchanted me more than I had expected and has me craving the second book because that chapter sample at the end of the novel did not fulfull my Paper Gods appetite.

First Line: I made it halfway across the courtyard before I realized I was still wearing my school slippers. 
Story: S
Cover: S