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Monday, July 22, 2013

NICOLE'S REVIEW + Novel Nails #1: Ink by Amanda Sun

Title: Ink
Author: Amanda Sun
Format Acquired: Paperback
Publication Date: June 25 2013
Publishing House: Harlequin Teen
ISBN: 9780373210718
Source of Copy: Purchased from Fully Booked


Ink is in their blood.

On the heels of a family tragedy, Katie Greene must move halfway across the world. Stuck with her aunt in Shizuoka, Japan, Katie feels lost. Alone. She doesn't know the language, she can barely hold a pair of chopsticks and she can't seem to get a hand of taking her shoes off whenever she enters a building.

When Katie meets aloof but gorgeous Tomohiro, the star of the school's kendo team, she is intrigued by him...and a little scared. His tough attitude seems meant to keep her at a distance, and when they're near each other, strange things happen. Pens explode. Ink drips from nowhere. And unless Katie is seeing things, drawings come to life.

Somehow Tomo is connected to the kami, powerful ancient beings who once ruled Japan - and as feelings develop between Katie and Tomo, things begin to spiral out of control. The wrong people are starting to ask questions, and if they discover the truth, no one will be safe.

(Image and information courtesy of Goodreads; Summary lifted from actual book)


This book turned out to be better than I expected and I just loved the fact that it was set in Japan. I mean, how many YA books are set in Japan? Add to that the really pretty cover done in watercolor and well, how could I possibly resist?

Katie moves to Japan to live with her aunt. It's difficult because she doesn't know the language and isn't familiar at all with the culture. But then she chances upon Tomohiro, star of her school's kendo team and strange things start to happen. Drawings come to life and ink drips from ceilings. Turns out Tomo is somehow connected to ancient Japanese gods called the Kami and as Tomo and Katie grow closer, things start to get a little out of hand. This is one secret they can't allow the wrong people to find out.

Katie is an engaging heroine. She's headstrong, persistent, and afraid yet she managed to work through her fear of the strange things happening to her. She sees past Tomo's brooding bad boy facade to the lonely boy struggling with the loss of his mother and his own frightening powers. It doesn't hurt that Tomo can draw like nobody's business. I just love male leads who can draw. And seeing as how he does calligraphy and I do -I used to anyway- calligraphy and well...I think we match.

What I liked about Ink was the lore. Drawings that come to life? As an artist, I thought that that would be pretty awesome. It was interesting to read about how normal everyday people could actually be connected to the Kami but one thing I wasn't so sure about were the roles of the secret society and the yakuza - aside from wanting their power of course.

But alas, as much as I liked this book I'm only giving it a 3.5 because it was somehow lacking, it's probably just me but I wanted to see more of the abilities that Tomo can wield and more action scenes, although it does somehow set things up for the next book. I can't wait! Plus I'm pretty stoked to see the cover for the next book. 

"Novel Nails" is a feature of the blog that showcases nail art inspired by books and their covers. Nail art will be created by either Michelle or Nicole and will be featured alongside their reviews. 

So since my nail art photos have been getting a lot of good reactions, Michelle and I decided to make it a feature on our blog. I would like to thank Kyle of The Selkie Reads Stories for helping us come up with a name. 

And here it is! Nail art inspired by Amanda Sun's Ink. I drew cherry blossoms on my nails and used the following nail polish.
Base: Orly White Tips
Branches: Orly Liquid Vinyl
Cherry Blossoms: Essie Bachelorette Bash

I'll try to take more pictures next time, in different angles too. And while we're at it, if you guys want to see my past book-ish nail art feel free to check out my instagram! 



  1. Congrats on your new blog feature! I'm sure many people are now looking forward to more of these. :) And thanks for the mention.

    Kyle @ The Selkie Reads Stories

  2. I don't even know if I'll comment on the review or on the nail art! Eeeekkk! I gave Ink 5 stars and I do understand why you found it lacking. I'm so looking forward to future novel nail features!!! So pretty~

    1. Thanks for dropping by Dianne! I'm looking forward to creating more! :D

  3. Love the nails! That's super impressive :D The Japanese setting looks like the best thing about Ink -- and the drawings. Glad that turned out to be a highlight of the book! I probably won't read this one just because someone said their is insta-love, which would bug me a little. Though, I kinda want to buy the book for the cover :D

    1. Why, thank you! The drawings were amazing and I loved each and every one of them. Insta-love is hit or miss for me and somehow I don't have any complaints about it in this book. I was probably distracted by the drawings. Tch. :)