Friday, July 11, 2014

Ink Exchange review

Ink Exchange
by Melissa Marr
Harper Collins
January 2008

First line: "Irial watched the girl stroll up the street: she was a bundle of terror and fury."

The second book in the Wicked Lovely series departs from the story of Aislinn, cursed with faerie sight. Ink Exchange focuses on Leslie, one of Aislinn's classmates, who is struggling with a difficult home life. Leslie is consumed with depression and self-destructive tendencies after her alcoholic father and missing mother fail to protect her from a rape arranged by her drug-abusing pimp older brother. Grim stuff indeed.

A lot of the story here revolves around a tattoo that Leslie decides to get. The description of the gritty tattoo parlor and the tattooing process all sounded believable to me. Leslie unknowingly picks a particular piece of art which links her to Irial, the Faery King of the Dark Court. Her friend Niall, an advisor to the Summer Court, and a former member of the Dark Court, tries to protect Leslie, but she gets pulled in to their intrigues anyhow. The Dark Court feeds off of negative emotions, and soon, bloodthirsty Irial is using his connection to Leslie to subject her to terrifyingly violent, chaotic scenes, as he drains her dry of feelings. It's scary stuff, but cathartic too, as Leslie uses the horrors she undergoes to purge herself of her fears, and ultimately, to move forward without Irial.

Even more ominous in tone than the first in the series, the serious subject matter with scenes that range from eerie and mystical to disturbingly violent makes this horror/fantasy suitable for older teens.

Compare to:
City of Bone - Cassandra Clare
Speak - Laurie Halse Anderson

I borrowed this book from the library.

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