Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr

Unbeknownst to mortals, a power struggle is unfolding in a world of shadows and danger. After centuries of stability, the balance among the Faery Courts has altered, and Irial, ruler of the Dark Court, is battling to hold his rebellious and newly vulnerable fey together. If he fails, bloodshed and brutality will follow.
Seventeen-year-old Leslie knows nothing of faeries or their intrigues. When she is attracted to an eerily beautiful tattoo of eyes and wings, all she knows is that she has to have it, convinced it is a tangible symbol of changes she desperately craves for her own life.
The tattoo does bring changes—not the kind Leslie has dreamed of, but sinister, compelling changes that are more than symbolic. Those changes will bind Leslie and Irial together, drawing Leslie deeper and deeper into the faery world, unable to resist its allures, and helpless to withstand its perils. . . .
I thoroughly enjoyed Melissa Marr's first YA book, Wicked Lovely, and was very much looking forward to this companion novel. Not only did Ink Exchange meet my expectations, it far surpassed them.
I am a firm believer that a novel just isn't great without memorable, complex characters. Ink Exchange was full of them. The main character, Leslie, was believable and I found her easy to relate to, even if I haven't been through the sort of difficulties she experienced. I fell in love with and felt so much compassion for Niall, and had very conflicted feelings toward Irial. I enjoyed the angst that the story brought out in me, as a book that brings out my emotions is always a winner in my opinion.
I loved that Ink Exchange took us deeper within Marr's world of fae, and I once again appreciated the physical descriptions she gave us about how everyone looked, from the color of their hair, the way they moved, and the shadows that surrounded them.
Not only is Ink Exchange a dark and wonderful story of a beautiful and dangerous faery world, but it also touches upon very real and human situations and emotions. The trauma that Leslie experiences and how she does and does not deal with it is a powerful message. This book deals with love, sacrifice, healing, and the power of independence and choice.
I love this book, and recommend it to anyone who likes to read from the urban fantasy/faerie/paranormal genre. In fact, those who don't normally read within the genre will probably enjoy it as well.
I CANNOT WAIT for the release of the next in the series, Fragile Eternity.


  1. I can't wait for Fragile Eternity ethier. Great review!

  2. Great review. You really summed out how powerful and interesting this book was despite and because of the dark subject matter. :)