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Ink Paperback – 2 Feb 2017

4.9 out of 5 stars 69 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 390 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic; 1 edition (2 Feb. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1407172840
  • ISBN-13: 978-1407172842
  • Product Dimensions: 40.9 x 2.4 x 20.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 10,753 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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4.9 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Here's the review I wrote for my website.

Well this is a first! I'm reviewing a book!

That means that for the first time in a long time I've actually read a book. The book in question was "Ink" by Alice Broadway and I've been looking forward to this one for a while. A novel about tattoos? Of course I'm going to be all over that. "Ink" isn't what I expected, not what I expected at all but, you know what? That's a good thing!

So....anyway...away we go!

Well first off, this is one good looking book. Quite possibly the best looking book I've read but should we, given the story it contains, judge a book by it's cover?

Secondly, at 46 I am a long way from the target demographic that this novel is aimed at. Young adult, I am not. That said, I really enjoyed this book, loved it in parts, bemused by it in others and was genuinely surprised by the ending. So what's it all about?

"Ink" is the story of Leora Flint, a teenage girl coming to terms with the passing of her father, final exams and the start of her working life. All very straightforward, teen angst, grief and stress, or so you would think.

However, Leora lives in a Saintstone and Saintstone isn't like other places. In the world that Leora lives each and every inhabitant is tattooed, their life's successes and failures, their age, their family history, everything even their name (which is tattooed at birth)...all documented and immortalised in "marks" in their skin and many of these marks are obligatory, state approved tattoos. Of course, the residents can continue their own story with designs of their own, but the basics? They are determined by the state.
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Ink is the debut novel of author Alice Broadway; a young adult, fantasy novel set in a world where all your actions (achievements, failures, crimes etc) are tattooed onto your skin for all see. It is, essentially, the story of your life and, when you die, is used to pass judgement on your life and determine whether you will be remembered, or forgotten. However, when Leora’s own father passes, her whole world is turned upside down as she begins to find out the truth about her family, about herself, and about the blanks.

Alice Broadway presents an immensely unique concept within this novel, one I have never seen before. It is a concept that I found both weird, yet strangely intriguing. Weird, in the sense that the skin of each person is flayed from their bodies when they pass and re-purposed into a book of their life, intriguing in that it makes perfect sense. Why wouldn’t you want to remember your loved ones from the memories inked upon their skin for all to see?

Ink is an original novel that drew me in immediately and Broadway truly knows how to build the world instantly. I never once felt out of place in Saintstone thanks to Broadway’s ability to incorporate the world around you into the writing whilst introducing Leora at the beginning of the novel. I thoroughly enjoyed the stories that are implemented throughout the novel that are from this world, and could clearly see the influences from our own tales. However, this novel isn’t just about the tattoos marked upon your skin since the moment you are brought into the world, but it is about prejudice, politics, society, and culture. It is about being different and standing out from the crowd.
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Leora's father has recently died and his skin is ready to tell his story like everyone else in Saintstone. Leora wants to be an "inker"; one of those who makes the tattoos that define people's lives and who would have added to dad's story. A public marking makes her realise that not all marks are good marks, and something happens to make Leora think that her dad may not be who he said he was. Is the fate of his story in her hands?

I really liked the premise for this book and was intrigued by the idea that marks on the skin could tell a story. From the synopsis, I did wonder whether the marks were n actual story (which I did think was slightly implausible) but the fact that they are tattoos makes much more sense and is really a very clever idea.

As characters, I thought that Leora and Obel were the most well written and had the most about them. Verity, Sophie and Oscar did lose their way a little in the tricky third quarter, but had certainly come into their own again at the end and definitely did their part to add to the shock factor of the climax.

This is a great YA novel as it has so many themes for everyone to enjoy, but it is YA and should be thought of us such; particularly in the relationships between Leora and Oscar and Leora and Verity. Nevertheless, it's a brilliant debut and I can't wait to see how the story continues in the next one; I'll definitely be reading it!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Wow! Love this book.
No pont me telling you the story, the other eeviwers do that. But suffice to say it's engrossing from the very first page.
This story is so well wriutten that it really pulls you in, and each time you put it down you can't wait to pick it back up again. The characters are beautifully painted (no pun intended - ok, well maybe a little bit), they're so vividly described that you can picture them so clearly and you really get the sense of how they're feeling.

This is a fantastic debut novel from Alice Broadway, and i can't wait to read the rest of the books in the series.
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