Review: Blood, Ink & Fire by Ashley Mansour

Blood, Ink & Fire

Imagine a world without books…
In the future, books are a distant memory. The written word has been replaced by an ever-present stream of images known as Verity. In the controlling dominion of the United Vales of Fell, reading is obsolete and forbidden, and readers themselves do not—cannot—exist.
But where others see images in the stream, teenager Noelle Hartley sees words. She’s obsessed with what they mean, where they came from, and why they found her.

Noelle’s been keeping her dangerous fixation with words a secret, but on the night before her seventeenth birthday, a rare interruption in the stream leads her to a mysterious volume linked to an underworld of rebel book lovers known as the Nine of the Rising. With the help of the Risers and the beguiling boy Ledger, Noelle discovers that the words within her are precious clues to the books of the earlier time—and as a child of their bookless age, she might be the world’s last hope of bringing them back.

'Meh' is an apt word for this book. It was very meh. There were a lot of good things and a lot of bad things.

The book started well, I got the feel of Awaken by Katie Kacvinsky at the start and I was really absorbed in it, but by the time the second part came around (33%) I was sort of wishing the book was a lot shorter. Mansour was a great author, but the plot itself dragged for me, I wasn't absorbed in the romance (Ledger was an enigma and Noelle had very little development), it happened way too quickly I felt like the characters didn't have individual personalities and this made it difficult to connect with any of them.

I felt like there was quite a lot of infodumping - one of my pet peeves in YA books. I like when information comes to the reader naturally in a way that you barely even notice it's happening, not when it's thrown at you. 

In all, I think that Blood, Ink and Fire was a very slow read. I didn't really connect with the characters and I couldn't really engage in the story - there were a few plot holes as well that I just didn't get over.

Overall Rating: D

Book released 1st December 2015 by Upturn Publishing
Book received from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review

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