Ink Exchange (Wicked Lovely #2)
by Melissa Marr
What is it about:
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...
What did I think of it:
This is the second book in a series, but I think this book can perfectly be read as a standalone as well.
I really liked the world building and the mood of this story. It's dark and mysterious, and hints at the magic that's hidden from mundane people.
I really liked Leslie. She's been broken, but managed to put herself together again, although the cracks are still showing. It made her both vulnerable and strong. I rooted for her to find the freedom, the change, she is longing for.
There are two men who are interested in Leslie, although I wouldn't call it a love triangle. Both Niall and Irial are complex and intriguing characters, and I had a hard time to decide which of them I was rooting for to succeed in his plans. (To be honest, the only characters I didn't care for turned out to be the lead characters of the first book in this series.)
The story is compelling and I had to keep reading to see where things would lead to. I love how this story makes you think. It's not black and white, but made up out of many shades of grey.
The ending was satisfying, although not what I expected.
I'm not sure if I will read other books in this series, because I didn't like the characters who will have the lead roles in the other books in this series. I will investigate what other books Marr has written though.
Why should you read it:
It's a compelling YA Faery read.