Published: 5th July 2013
By: Mira Ink
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
With a mixed bag of reviews for Ink, I did head into it with some hesitation, only to be pleasantly surprised.
After Katie's mom dies, she has to move to Japan to live with her aunt Diane. She's out of her depth. She doesn't know much about Japanese culture and she's struggling with the language. She would have much preferred to have been sent to Canada to stay with her grandparents.
When she accidentally eavesdrops on the break up of Tomohiro Yuu and his soon to be ex-girlfriend, and sees one of his sketches move, her life is about to take a very unexpected turn. Tomohiro is rude, mean and dangerous, with a bad reputation and secrets in his past. But after what Katie has seen, she just can't forget it. And does become a little obsessed about it. She wants to know where he sneaks off to everyday and did he really cheat on Myu and get another girl pregnant? I admit that Katie's obsession and actions around this point were a bit over the top.
I really enjoyed Ink though. With the mysterious Tomohiro, a twist of Japanese mythology, involvement with the Yakuza, the Japanese Mafia, and also the Kami, who plan to take over and rule Japan, there was a lot going on, and after getting over a few glitches in the beginning, I was thoroughly entertained throughout. I also found that the romance was really sweet and I enjoyed it a lot, with some nice little moments.
Katie, while a likeable character, I felt had the potential to be an awesome character. But some of the things that she says/thinks are just really stupid and I felt should have been edited, as they didn't seem to fit with the character that the author was trying to create. These were mostly at the beginning of the book so it wasn't as annoying as the story continued. Katie was mostly a tough, strong character who was snarky at times but maybe just a bit too inquisitive.
I really liked Tomohiro. He was a really enjoyable character who lives under a facade, to prevent people from becoming close to him and being harmed by the monster that he feels is within him.
Katie makes some friends in Japan, Yuki and Tanaka, but they play very little part. They seem to be only brought into the story to serve another purpose. They're not well fleshed out and I didn't' build an opinion of them either way. But Katie makes another friend, with a guy she meets at the station, Jun. He is a mysterious character who I wondered about but liked, and who played an interesting part.
Obviously, this book is not for everyone. In most reviews I've read, people didn't like that it had a lot of the usual cliches. Maybe it's that I haven't read enough of them yet, but they don't bother me or hinder my enjoyment. I really enjoyed this book and found that I didn't want to put it down. But if the cliches would prevent you from enjoying a book, then this one probably isn't for you.
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