My name is Amanda, I'm 15 years old, and I (obviously) love to read. I mainly read young adult, but I read the occasional adult fiction or middle-grade. I make YouTube videos about books, as well.
I received this ARC from Harlequin Teen Panel for review.
When I received Ink in the mail, I was super excited. I mean, it's about drawings coming to life -- what could go wrong?
There were so many cliches throughout this book, mainly with the romance. The romance was very reminiscent of Twilight:
-Average girl moves to new town.
-Girl meets Mystery-Boy.
-Girl likes Mystery-Boy, but Mystery-Boy warns that her that he's too dangerous.
-Mystery-Boy is a supernatural being/has a supernatural power
-Girl meets different Nice-Boy who also ends up having some sort of super power/is a supernatural creature.
-Girl and Mystery-Boy fall in love anyway (for no reason at all).
This plot is way too overused - it surprises me that these same plot points get published today, five years after what started it (Twilight). It's not even a good plot! This is what baffles me! It's boring and not good and way overused.
And then there's Katie. Ahh, Katie. I think Katie is probably the most annoying protagonist I have ever read from the perspective of. This was a fairly fast paced book, yet it took me a week to get through. Why? I knew I had to be losing brain cells reading from Katie's POV. She cried seventeen times throughout this 326-page book. Seventeen times. I counted. The majority of the crying scenes were completely unnecessary. NO ONE CRIES THAT MUCH. NO ONE. Besides that, Katie was just plain annoying and I couldn't like her no matter how much I tried. She pretty much stalked Tomo and made REALLY stupid decisions throughout the whole book. I was hoping she would change before the end, but nope.
On top of that, I could find no redeeming factor about Tomohiro. He was a jerk to everyone, despite Katie's insistence. To be completely honest, I don't understand why Katie liked him, even as a friend. I found him to be extremely annoying and not worth the way Katie kept running back to him. He is the type of person that no one wants to be around (at least I wouldn't).
The first time Katie sees Tomo, it's when he's being utterly cruel to his (now ex-) girlfriend Myu. It is found out that Myu broke up with him because he got another girl pregnant. Katie finds a picture that Tomo drew of the pregnant girl, and it moves, so Katie becomes curious. So she decides to stalk the guy who got his not-girlfriend pregnant and who also has been accused of stabbing his best friend in the past. Oh yeah, that's a genius idea right there! She then falls in love with him. For no apparent reason.
This book is so infuriating! It took an idea with such potential and ruined it.
Also, there's a glossary of about 75-100 Japanese words and phrases in the back. I don't know any Japanese whatsoever, and it was very annoying to flip back and forth between the glossary. Most of the words weren't explained when used throughout the book, either!
Speaking of language, how exactly did Katie learn Japanese in five months?? I've been taking Spanish for roughly ten years, and it still is difficult at times to understand my teacher when she's speaking fast. I can't imagine how I would survive living in a Spanish-speaking country after ten years, let alone five months! And correct me if I'm wrong, but Japanese seems way more difficult than Spanish (at least when compared to English!!).
I did, however, really enjoy the artwork done by Petra Dufkova, who also designed the cover. There are multiple drawings throughout, and they were all gorgeous. There were also two mini flipbook-style drawings in the bottom right corners, which were also gorgeous. As much as I loved the artwork, the book isn't getting any extra points rating-wise for it. I'm rating the contents of the book, not the accompanying features. Sorry.
The first chapter of the second book was printed in my ARC. I will not be reading the first chapter, or any part of the second book, ever. I'm glad to be out of this world and never, ever go back.