Some things are permanent.
And they cannot be changed back.
Joy Malone learns this the night she sees a stranger with all-black eyes across a crowded room—right before the mystery boy tries to cut out her eye. Instead, the wound accidentally marks her as property of Indelible Ink, and this dangerous mistake thrusts Joy into an incomprehensible world—a world of monsters at the window, glowing girls on the doorstep, and a life that will never be the same.
Now, Joy must pretend to be Ink’s chosen one—his helper, his love, his something for the foreseeable future...and failure to be convincing means a painful death for them both. Swept into a world of monsters, illusion, immortal honor and revenge, Joy discovers that sometimes, there are no mistakes.
Somewhere between reality and myth lies…
Paperback, 384 pages
Expected publication: July 30th 2013 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Publisher in exchange for an honest review
Four stars: An original and smart paranormal story with unique characters.
Joy soaks in the flashing lights, pulsing music and gyrating bodies. A night at the dance club is just what she needed to help her leave her troubles behind. Little does she know that tonight's outing will open the door to a whole heap of new troubles. It starts when she notices a goth girl and boy with dark eyes standing in the shadows. Suddenly the dark boy approaches her and she feels a blinding pain in her eye. After that, things get a little crazy as Joy starts seeing the impossible. Somehow her encounter with the mysterious boy has exposed her to a whole new magical world. Can Joy learn to navigate the Twixt?
What I Liked:
- I love finding something completely original in the paranormal genre. Every time I think it can't be done, I am surprised when something exciting and unique falls into my lap. Thanks to my cover lust, I was able to find a book that astounded me with its creative premise, innovative characters and a smart and complex story line. Indelible is far more than a beautiful cover, the story definitely lives up to gorgeous packaging.
- The creativity of this story starts with the introduction of Indelible Ink and his sister Invisible Inq. These two magical beings are scribes for the magical world. They take orders from all the magical entities who wish to make their mark and claim a human. It is Ink's and Inq's job to make sure these humans are marked with the appropriate signatures. Ink and Inq are know as Folk. For centuries they have slipped unseen into the human world and made their marks. The pair are completely invisible to the human eye, except for a few select individuals who possess the sight. I loved meeting these two original paranormal entities.
- Aside from Ink and Inq, there is an entire cast of magical beings that are, for the most part, fresh and new. From the toadlike Baliwick who oversees the Twixt to the strange tracker Kestral. There are plenty of unusual entities in this one.
- The story line is complex and intelligent. There is lots of unexpected and a trove of original ideas. There was a great deal of information to take in and wrap your head around. I liked that this one was a bit of a challenge and it made me think. The pace is quick and the ending is thrilling, and there is no cliffhanger. If you are looking for a smart and creative book definitely give this one a go.
- The romance is a delight. I liked that it starts off on shaky and uncertain ground. Slowly, Joy is drawn to Ink, who through his association with Joy begins to transform and become more human. There are some breathtaking moments as the pair explores what it means to be human. The two develop a strong protective bond, and they each go to great lengths to try and ensure the safety of the other. This is a romance that moves slowly and I liked that it took its time developing.
- Joy is a character whom I learned to admire. In the beginning, she is a young lady who has dealt with a tremendous amount of emotional turmoil. She is not on speaking terms with her mother, since her mother abandoned the family to run away with a younger lover. Her older brother is away at college, and she is alone with her dad. Once she encounters Ink, Joy is thrown into a whirlwind of strange when she encounters mysterious creatures and a new magical world. Even though she is terrified, she takes it in stride and learns to adapt quickly. She is smart and resourceful and she learns to think quickly on her feet. By the end, she is capable of defending herself. I appreciated that she tried to take care of herself on numerous occasions when she was threatened instead of screaming for Ink's help. She also grows on a personal level as she confronts the turmoil in her personal life, from her relationship with her father and mother to the surprising revelation of her older brother. Joy is a strong and likable heroine.
- I enjoyed the writing, it is detailed and different, full of lovely metaphors and gorgeous descriptions.
And The Not So Much:
- As I mentioned, this is a complex and innovative story, there is a great deal of information to take in and make sense of, and at times, I didn't feel like I had a complete grasp on everything. I didn't quite understand the significance of the marks of Ink and Inq. What exactly happened to the humans once they were marked? What does it mean to carry the signatures of several different entities whose mark is supreme? Do these marks have significance once the human dies?
- The world building was a tiny bit lacking. There is an entire magical world separated from the human world. In between the worlds is the area known as the Twixt. I would have loved a bit more detail and development as far as the world building goes.
- The ending is fast and chaotic and it felt like a majority of the explanations were thrown quickly into the last few pages. It almost feels like a bit of an information dump, I would like to have seen it spread out a bit better.
- I wasn't a big fan of Joy's so called best friend Monica. Monica at first appears to be a supportive and caring best friend, but after she meets a new guy at the club all she can focus on is Gordon. I hated the way she quickly ditched her best friend all for a guy. Though, we all know that this happens in real life far too often.
Indelible is an innovative, fresh new story with exciting and creative paranormal entities. If you are looking for an intelligent and unique read definitely pick up Indelible. I would recommend it for the originality alone, but there is so much more from a likable, strong heroine to a nice romance, and it all wraps up with a neat resolution, no cliffhangers. I am very much looking forward to the sequel.
"The whole night was awkward---impossible and frightening and beautiful and strange. The moment sputtered and sparked with unsaid things."
"It had been an innocent question! But lately innocent questions had had unexpected answers and caused all sorts of trouble."
"Her lips were close. She could taste whispers of him and rain."
"The wind was a blast of cold, crisp air sprinkled with the wet of passing winter and the pollen promise of spring. There were even a few flashes of green rolling past the car in whispers."
"He is haunted by regret, burdened by memories. It is a vice a weakness." Her eyes roamed over Joy. "And you can learn a lot about someone by knowing their weakness."
"I learned long ago to make do with what I have rather than mourn what I have not."
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.
If you missed the tour post on Friday, be sure to check it out for a chance to win a copy of Indelible!