Friday, 17 May 2013


Ink is in their blood
On the heels of a family tragedy, Katie Greene must 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.

When Katie meets aloof but gorgeous Tomohiro, the star of the school’s kendo team, she is intrigued by him... and a little scared. His tough attitude seems meant to keep her at a distance, and when they’re near each other, strange things happen. Pens explode. Ink drips from nowhere. And unless Katie is seeing things, drawings
come to life.

Somehow Tomo is connected to the kami, powerful ancient beings who once ruled Japan—and as feelings develop between Katie and Tomo, things begin to spiral out of control. The wrong people are starting to ask questions, and if they discover the truth, no one will be safe.

While I enjoyed reading Amanda Sun's first instalment of The Paper Gods series, I can't figure out if I actually liked the story of how Katie Green becomes involved with a boy whose drawings come to life, or if I was just mesmerised by the Japanese setting.  There's plenty of unique elements, but now that I've had some time to think, the relationship aspect of Ink was cliché and could be found in multiple YA books available already.  Girl meets dangerous boy, dislikes boy, slowly starts to fall for boy, boy pushes her away, girl decides he's worth fighting for, hijinks ensue.

However, aren't there only 6 stories in the world?  It's how you shape them that matters and boy, does Sun have a way of gift wrapping a story with a forbidden relationship at the core.  Ink was extremely readable, and I couldn't wait to find out more about Katie's connection to the Kami. Not to mention that Sun's peppering of small details to give a sense of place is astounding, and I loved that I was learning about Japanese culture without even realising it.  Another one of the saving graces of Ink is that Katie isn't as whiney as some of the YA characters I have recently come across (Mila, I'm looking at you!).  If she kept up with her kendo lessons, I suspect she'd become pretty bad assed.

So, even though I was indeed mesmerised by the exotic setting, I'm excited to see where Sun will take her characters next, as the end of Ink opens up a world of possibilities, and how she will develop the mythology surrounding the Kami.  If you get a chance to, then pick a copy of Ink up, if only to stare at the beautiful artwork on the cover!
Ink will be published on the 5th July 2013.
Many thanks to Harlequin UK for approving my request to receive an EARC from Netgalley. 


  1. Oooo this actually sounds kind of good! And Japan isn't really my thing, but "when they’re near each other, strange things happen. Pens explode. Ink drips from nowhere." just sounds really intriguing! It seems somewhat unique for YA. I'm gonna add this one to my calendar and keep an eye out for it.

    1. Agreed, it's definitely got 'pick me up, I'm different' blurb! But like I said in the blurb, I can't quite make out if Sun managed to avoid all the regular YA tropes. Will be interesting to see what you think if you get round to reading it!