Author: Amanda Sun
Date Published: June 25th, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Barnes & Noble
About the Book:
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.
Great premise, great potential, but failure in delivery - this is what sums up everything I think about Ink.
I had huge hopes for this book because it is set in Japan - the land of the rising sun, anime, manga, cosplay, J-dorama, Kendo, samurai and everything weird to normal folks. I confess that I'm an otaku, and I don't consider that as a negative thing. So when I received an ARC of Ink, I just couldn't contain my joy! I just had to read it! Then imagine that joy being sucked out little by little when I started reading the book.
The biggest thing which became a huge turn off for me in this book is the heroine. Let me be blunt and just say that Katie Greene is one annoying little prick of a stalker. I do not like her. I know I sound mean, but in all seriousness, never has a heroine ticked me off this way.
While I was reading the book, I groaned multiple times because of how annoying Katie was. Sure, she was this gaijin (outsider) and she's supposed to be broody and all unfamiliar. That's normal. Being thrown in a completely foreign environment makes a person vulnerable. I understand that perfectly. What I don't understand is why she just goes out of her way stalk Tomo. This is not something I could imagine a foreigner, who's all broody being in Japan, would do.
The irony is this: At the beginning, Katie laments being different, being a foreigner living and studying in Japan. She even wants to leave and looks forward to nothing but leaving Japan, but then, she goes out of her way to stalk a guy who looks and acts dangerous. Curiosity? I don't think so. Try annoying stalker-tendencies.
Second annoying thing about Katie: she's like a love-struck unicorn in heat (Yes, I can be colorful even when I'm saying something negative). They barely know each other and she suddenly says she can't live without him. Wow. Just wow. I didn't even know Insta-Love could be as instant as this. And let me just say that the forbidden-love plot device between Katie and Tomo was also another turn off.
Next, Tomo - broody, violent and mysterious hot guy. Basically, imagine a hot anime guy and you get him. Nothing fascinating about him really, except his cool powers. I also don't relate to him that much as a character at all because he's two-dimensional.
All in all, you know that feeling when there's great premise and a promising blurb in a well-packaged book, but then those things are all overshadowed by cliche and two-dimensional characters? This is exactly how I feel. I know that the premise is great. It has potential to be something really awesome! But then the characters are all very annoying and the premise is wasted. What a tragedy really.