Author: Amanda Sun
First published June 8, 2013
326 pages, Paperback
ISBN: 9780373210718 (ISBN10: 037321071X)
After the sudden death of her parents, the last thing Ava Matthews wants is to leave her life in California and move to Japan to live with her grandmother. Struggling to adapt to a new culture and language, Ava feels completely alone in Tokyo.
That is until she meets the mysterious and brooding Junichi. Jun is a master of the art of kendo and Ava is drawn to him immediately.
But when she discovers his drawings come to life, Ava realizes there is more to Jun than meets the eye. He is connected to the supernatural world of Japan and being near Ava is causing his abilities to go out of control.
With danger lurking around every corner, Ava must navigate this new world and protect herself and Jun before it’s too late. She never wanted to leave California, but now she may never leave Japan alive.
Ink by Amanda Sun is a thrilling young adult novel, first published on June 8, 2013. This book tells the story of a sixteen-year-old American girl, Katie, who moves to Japan with her aunt after the death of her mother.
Throughout the book, the author explores the themes of cultural differences, love, loss, and self-discovery. Amanda Sun is a Canadian author who is known for creating compelling stories that focus on characters grappling with personal and cultural identity.
Set in modern-day Japan, Ink takes the reader on a journey through the eyes of an outsider, showcasing the beauty and complexity of Japanese culture. The author has done a remarkable job of capturing the essence of daily life in Japan, portraying traditional Japanese culture in a highly relatable manner.
The main conflict of the story arises when the protagonist discovers the secrets surrounding a mysterious boy named Tomo, who is hiding an enchanted power. One of the strengths of this novel is the character development.
Katie’s character is highly relatable, making her journey throughout the novel engaging and emotional. The other characters, including Tomo, are excellently crafted with backstories and motives that add depth and complexity to the novel.
The author also masters the pacing of the novel with a seamless flow of events that keeps readers engaged until the end. The author has also skillfully woven Japanese mythology into the story, providing a unique insight into Japan’s cultural heritage.
The research and attention to detail in the world-building of Ink are incredibly impressive, giving readers insight into Japan’s culture while avoiding stereotypical depictions. In terms of criticisms, some readers may find the romantic development between Katie and Tomo to be too rushed or clich.
However, this isn’t too problematic and doesn’t detract from the overall story. The ending also feels somewhat abrupt, which some readers may find frustrating.
Overall, Ink is an excellent novel that is highly recommended for young adults interested in Japanese culture, mythology, and young love. The writing style is descriptive and engaging, and the themes explored are relatable to readers of all backgrounds.
Ink is an excellent addition to the young adult fantasy romance genre, and Amanda Sun has done an excellent job of carving out her own unique voice as an author. I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars.