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All art is unstable. It's meaning is not necessarily that implied by the author, There is no authorative active voice. There are only multiple readings. David Bowie, 1995

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

'Tomohiro's eyes grew vacant as he sketched...he couldn't stop.'

Ink (The Paper Gods) by Amanda Sun.  June 25

Japanese intrigue and  legend come together in this fascinating YA novel.
The tension builds like the sweep of the calligraphy pen. One moment flowing musical lines, the next, staccato and angry. This off centre flow kept my attention, at once both riveted and yet dreamlike. 

Much of the action is set against Sakura, the backdrop of the cherry blossoms which to my mind become an analogous reference to the flowering of the story.
Upon her mother's death Katie moves to be with her aunt in Japan.
At school she chances upon a break up confrontation between two students. The male student is Tomohiro Yuu.  Katie happens to see a drawing of a girl the two were both arguing about. When the image turns its head and glares at her, Katie's world begins to change. It seems that Katie is a catalyst to Yuu's strange talent, a talent that could destroy him unless controlled.
Yuu is possibly a  Kami, powerful Japanese mages whose ink and blood drawings could create alternative realities and mythical creatures.  This  gift has a dark side, dooming the Kami as the need to draw in ink and blood takes over their being. Their calligraphy is more cursed than blessed.
Visually prompting, the story unveiled with an anime quality that made it even more compelling.

A NetGalley ARC

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