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Review: Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr

Tuesday, December 27, 2011
5 Stars: Incredible
Series: Wicked Lovely #2
Hardback: 328 Page
Publication: April 4, 2008 by Harper Teen

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....

Melissa Marr continues her tales of Faerie in a dark, ravishing story of temptation and consequences, and of heroism when least expected.

Ink Exchange is darker and more seductive than Wicked Lovely. While it too revolves around an innocent mortal girl who gets caught up in the faery world by a twist of fate, it reveals that there is more side characters of Wicked Lovely than at first glance. These narrators have dark pasts and are trying to find their place in the world.

Leslie is trying to forget a terrible incident from her past and to gain confidence to move on. Niall is stuck between two courts: one that has inflicted pain on him but which resonates with his dark nature and one that has sheltered him but whose intentions he has yet to divine. Irial will do anything necessary to protect his court (the Dark Court), but he is growing tired of reigning.

Both of the male narrators develop an unhealthy interest in Leslie. At first, I fully expected to support Niall because of his desire to protect her and because of his affiliation with the Summer Court, but he loses himself in confusion and makes questionable decisions and ends up being outplayed by Irial. I ended up liking Irial more because he only acts in the best interests of his court--and because he does the right thing for everyone in the end. Hopefully, the new responsibilities thrust upon Niall will force him to grow up in the next book.

Ink Exchange furthers the plot established in Wicked Lovely by showcasing the effect of the newly founded peace on the Dark Court. The writing is simple and poetic. Sometimes, I really wished that there was more detailed imagery, but Melissa Marr's writing style brings out the dark and wild beauty of the faery world.

I also love how she details the tattooing process. It was interesting and brought the process of the ink exchange to life!

Note: While I love the first book and have read it more times than Ink Exchange, I do love this book in its own way and really enjoy reading it, though I am not fond of drugs and of people losing themselves. Leslie is a strong girl--a survivor--and she grows so much during this novel.


4 comments on "Review: Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr"
  1. Eeek. I'm glad you liked this Kristy. I liked Wicked Lovely but this one was not for me I remember feeling really bored and not into it. Oh well.

    Xpresso Reads

  2. That's how it was at first for me, but I got into the story. It's different from Wicked Lovely for sure!

  3. This sounds so cool - how everything starts with a tattoo!!

    And faeries:))

    Sounds awesome!


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