The battle between the Dark Court and the Summer Court revolves around Leslie Unfortunately, she doesn t know what is going on since Ash doesn t want her to know about the Faery world Ash thinks if Leslie doesn t know, she ll be safe Instead, Leslie gets the tattoo and feels the immediate draw to Irial where she is used to feed the Dark Court Niall is willing to do everything he can to ensure Leslie s safety once she is under Irial s control even if means breaking his ties to the Summer Court Can Niall get Leslie s life back Can he win her love Will she be any better with him than with Irial read Ink Exchange to find out You won t be disappointed Ink Exchange is just as captivating as Wicked Lovely I can t wait for the third book.
I didn t like the first one, Wicked Lovely, so I don t know why I read the second one, other than I wanted to give the author a second chanceThe teen librarian where I work told me that the teens are eating these books up, but I can only figure that the appeal is the fact that teenagers are being picked to be fairy queens I don t get it.
These books are badly written, the world the characters inhabit is undeveloped, and the author spends too much time on the build up only to leave us with hurried, pat endings.
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 FollowSeventeen 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 LifeThe Tattoo Does Bring Changes, But Not The Kind Leslie Has Dreamed Of, But Sinister, Compelling Changes That Are 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 Wicked Lovely, Melissa Marr s first novel, was on my Best of 2007 list and I ve been very excited about the sequel, Ink Exchange The storyline follows Aislinn s friend Leslie Leslie is surrounded by a fog of secrets and unable to break through the fog because of something that happened to her while Aislinn was caught up in her own set of the tumultuous events in Wicked Lovely The gulf between the two girls only grows wider as they find themselves unable to talk about how they have each been irrevocably altered While Aislinn negotiates a tricky truce between Keenan and Seth, Leslie is left to fend for herself, waitressing tables to pay the bills, and avoiding going home for any length of time She is also storing away a little cash to get a tattoo as a symbol of taking her life back and escaping the terror that s dominated it for too long.
Turns out she s not completely alone, though Aislinn has commissioned Niall, Keenan s friend and right hand man, to watch over Leslie, haunting her steps in order to protect her from the Dark Court faeries who seem to have developed a sudden, unhealthy interest in her Chief among Aislinn s worries is Irial, the Dark King himself But, unbeknownst to any of them, Leslie has chosen Irial s tattoo to ink on her back, a process which will link the girl and the Dark King, allowing him to feed off human emotion through her, and thereby keep his people from starving Add to that the complication that Niall is falling in love with Leslie Irial is falling in.
with Leslie And Niall and Irial have A History A long, dark, twisted, and surprisingly moving one.
The thing about Ink Exchange is, just when you think it can t get any worse, it does With a vengeance A sort of hazy, starbursty kind of worse Until you want to run screaming onto the page, snatch Leslie and Niall, and, yes, Irial, too in your arms and stash them away somewhere warm and safe and dry until they re able to heal Short of being able to do that, you keep reading I liked Leslie I liked her a lot And I hated that she had so few choices available and that, for the majority of the book, she was being manipulated left and right By those who loved her, wanted her, and hated her alike It made me mad At all the characters, even as I loved them Even my beloved Seth who seemed to see clearer than anyone, except perhaps Irial And it made the ending a very satisfying one But it wasn t an easy read And it wasn t a pleasant one And I still, epilogue be damned, have the aforementioned urge to run in and save them all But I will wait Somewhat impatiently For book three.
This book surprised me and not in a good way Perhaps because I didn t feel as many dark undertones in the first book, Wicked Lovely, I expected this work to be an entertaining, dark ish, YA fantasy with themes of finding love, belonging, dealing with authority power, etc What I encountered was a disturbing novel which addresses themes of extreme violence, questionable ethics, addiction and domestic abuse in a very surface shallow way I made myself push through to the end, even when I realized a couple of chapters in what kind of departure this book would be from any comfort level I ve ever had It didn t get any better I m hoping that the next installment in the series, Fragile Eternity, will pick up the engaging relationship themes with a balance of fantasy and care that drew me to the first book.
3 starsI wanted to give the prequel to this book Wicked Lovely 3 stars but I opted for 4 stars in the end because of the cute little excerpts that Marr included at the start of the chapters about fae folklore I found them charming Unfortunately those little quotes were not included in Ink Exchange I thought that omitting these took from the atmosphere of the book Should something like that had been included, I would have easily given this one 4 stars as well.
I wanted to like this book, and I did, but I didn t feel that it as effectively captured the spirit of the fairy world as did Wicked Lovely I should bring up that one of my contentions with Wicked Lovely was the fact that it has such a predictable happy ending And to give Marr some well deserved credit on Ink Exchange this one did not The ending was well done but far from a happy little fairy tale ending with a pink bow on the top Don t get me wrong it was wrapped up nicely, but the bow was probably not pink satin, but dirty black lace, and has strands of barbed wire sticking out of it Leslie, the protagonist, was indeed a strong female character but frustrating at the same time One of these characters that you like but you keep going, are you some sort of an idiot and smacking said book against your forehead at the decisions she is making Potential spoilers ahoy in italics As in Wicked lovely, our different but fearless female protagonist Leslie has the undying love and attention of 2 hot male suitors Every little girls dream Cue gagging Anyway, this time, both guys are of the fairy variety Niall and Irial vie for Leslie s love throughout the book Both Niall and Irial are dark fairies, and as such, they have the ability to make mortal females become physically and emotionally addicted to their touchEnd spoilers I don t think I will ever get the songYour Love Is My Drugby Ke ha out of my head now Thanks a lot for that by the way Ms MarrBecause your love, your love, your love, is my drug Your love your love your love All in all, Ink Exchange is a cute book, of all the YA teenage love triangle books I have read, this is one of the better ones I would recommend it if you like YA and or you have a thing for books about fairies.
Bullet Review In some ways better than Wicked Lovely , in some ways worse Leslie is a way cooler character than Aislinn, and I like her struggles AND the choice she makes at the end On the other hand, super emo Faerie boy Niall made me laugh at how emo he was while Irial makes feminist me rage I m also not happy how violence and possession are mistaken for romantic intentions.
5 stars graciously rounded to 3 mostly because of Leslie and her final choice While this is an OK series, it s dark and rather dull I won t be pursuing sequels.
Full Review Leslie is Aislinn s friend, but she has absolutely no clue about the world of Faerie Not that she really cares she s too preoccupied with her alcoholic father and drug addled and horrible brother who drugged her and let his druggie friends rape her What she wants most is a tattoo and to snuggle up next to the hot Emo Faerie guy that hangs around with Keenan, Asilinn and Seth But Irial, the Dark King, has other plans.
It seems like eons ago since I readWicked Lovely , a book that I read and mysteriously rated 4 stars, even though I distinctly remembering feeling iffy about the whole thing I really didn t like it enough to continue, but I had heard that book 2 was better so I bought it.
Fast forward to today and I realize I need to clean out a ton of these books from my library particularly all these sh tty YA books So I beebopped to my library and picked up audiobooks, because I can read them way faster than paperbacks or hardcovers.
A part of me likes Ink Exchange because it is way memorable I barely remember the plot of Wicked Lovely and for those who are thinking about starting the series here, I say go ahead, background details you need will be provided and it s about a totally different character anyway and Leslie is a far interesting character In Wicked Lovely you think Leslie is going to be yet another Regina, a blonde, blue eyed, popular high school b tch Instead, Leslie is a bruised and battered girl Her family is torn apart after her mother leaves her father an alcoholic and gambler, her brother a drug dealer, who thinks nothing about setting his sister up for rape It s tragic and disheartening No wonder Leslie flees to Pins and Needles horrible, cliched name BTW for a tattoo No wonder all her conversations are light and frivolous.
The problem ultimately with the novel is that it is less about the protagonist Leslie and about the Irial Niall dynamic You see Irial and Niall were best buds back in the day, sleeping around, partying, that sorta thing Only Niall grew a conscious and become emo I swear, I can hear Amy Lee in this pictureAnd Irial decided that consent was optional Seriously, this isn t sexy AT ALL.
Both guys want Leslie, only Irial will be creepy and force her to go with him Which is why Niall, Asilinn, and Keenan, the three people that know that Irial is looking at Leslie, don t tell Leslie about her stalker.
Because THAT S gonna turn out well.
Why are we not surprised that Leslie is captured, her emotions are stripped away from her to fuel Irial and his people, and she is basically forced to do numerous things against her will such as watch as fellow mortals are forced to have sex and are killed This book is unnecessarily dark, and Leslie is forced into doing things than she makes the choices she purports she does until the end, that is view spoiler At the very end, Leslie decides she s had enough of Faeries and cuts off relations to both Irial and Niall Even when Niall is all, I am yours , she s like, I want to be on my own, thank you very much.
While I liked the initial Niall Leslie dynamic it s really the only romantic relationship, as I do NOT consider Irial a viable romantic option , it s nice to end a YA book withOUT the prerequisite romance hide spoiler Edit re read in 2018 I still love this book I still love Irial , but I love Niall even than I did the first go round I have to dock a star for the audiobook The narrator was just meh for me Leslie is such a strong character that is just BREAKS ME inside, reliving her backstory and all she s endured The ending of this book is so satisfying to me, because I love the prospect of a new beginning even if I m reading an old book HOWEVER, the audiobook did teach me that I was pronouncing basically everything incorrectly, so that was a fun reality check and a good way to take me down a few notches Most definitely one of my surprise favorite 2010 reads so far It was of a 4.
5 or a 4.
75, but due to the characterization, I m willing to overlook the slight drag in the middle.
I will admit that I was reluctant to read this one I am a huge fan of Wicked Lovely and will not lie when I say that I put effort into holding off on Ink Exchange I walked past my bookshelf everyday, made eye to spine contact, grunted and scurried away The idea of alternate characters did not sit well with me, especially considering that Leslie was so boring and one dimensional in WL.
I Was So Wrong.
Leslie s got serious issues I sympathized with the poor girl because she was no damsel in distress She had a backbone, but she was also so damaged, which is realistic I m glad that Melissa Marr did not paint a world of problems only to have Leslie act totally functional throughout the book Lots of the reviews I ve read stated that getting a tattoo is not a way of coping with a difficulties in life, but I disagree At least from a teenager s point of view Of course getting a tattoo does not solve life s problems, but in some deluded way, it makes sense to a 17 year old attempting to grasp at any sense of self that she can I can t explain why, but I recall being that rebellious teenager.
At any rate, my favorite character was Irial, hands down There s just something about the evil doer unveiling a hidden sensitive side that makes me cheer for them And Irial swoon was such an intriguing character SPOILER I m a little sad that Leslie didn t end up with someone at the end of the story, but I feel like Marr went against the grain with the lack of happy ending Which, AGAIN, is sad but realistic The girl wanted nothing to do with faeries She wanted to pick up the pieces on her own and didn t want anyone s help She gave up Niall and Irial at her own discernment, which is so different from the route that some YA novels take END SPOILER Seriously, this book stayed with me long, long, long after I finished it It s been about a month now and I still think about it And I m really excited to buy the Fragile Eternity paperback with the continuation of Leslie s story in it, called Stopping Time read THIS BOOK
I m not really sure what to say about this book It disturbs me that the protagonist, Leslie, who has survived a horrible sexual assault is, by the end of the book, repeatedly used both emotionally and sexually for weeks by the Dark Court king Yet we re supposed to think this is a healing thing because her proximity to the Dark King feels so good that she forgets everything except being with him But she wouldn t need him or feel anything toward him were it not for the tattoo using his blood that was put on her back and he knew that she d need endless sex with him once it was done I found this story truly distasteful, particularly since this book is YA I d expect this plot in a novel with adult characters, not teens The fey have lived hundreds of years and they can t find adults to interact with Creepy, and not in a good way.
The most sympathetic character was Niall but his backstory is never truly told and his relationship with Leslie fizzles.
I was also very bothered that the tattoo artist who put the fey king s blood into the tattoo on Leslie without her knowledge pays no price for doing this to her No one is angry, Leslie comes to acceptance of what he did and that s it He helped the Dark King trap her and use her but no one seems to care Humans have died because Rabbit did this to them in the past but since Iriel comes to care for Leslie, we re supposed to think that makes it okay, I guess.
One of the things that continues to bother me about Marr s storytelling is being thrown into the story without ever having the action explained or clear until the book is than half over Even when the book is finished I still don t know what a Ly Erg, glaistig or the Bananach are and I feel like I need to read these books with the encyclopedia of fey creatures sitting beside me If you re going to create a whole world, kindly explain how it works and what the creatures are.
For me, a disappointment.
Reviewed by Rabid ReadsHow do I love Bad Boys Let me count the ways 1 Okay, so I don t actually have reasons, I just love them 2 But I should get an A for effort, b c I sat here and thought about it for a good long while Iriel GAH Even his name is HOT.
The Dark Court thrives on chaos and Iriel is its King His Fae are the natural balance to the restraint and order found in the High Court, but ever since Keenan found his Summer Queen and Beira the Winter Queen s reign of terror ended, his own court has been weakening Too much harmony, not enough fear and pain.
What s a responsible Fae monarch to do Find a way to feed on mortals darker emotions, of course The problem is in the process There are unforeseen side effects And that doesn t take into consideration that Iriel s chosen vehicle is one of Aislinn s best friends EEP.
I still didn t bond with Aislinn or Keenan in this book In fact, I think I liked them both significantly less Aislinn could have prevented the whole thing if she d just told Leslie the truth, and Keenan became the scheming, manipulative bastard I d feared he was becoming in WICKED LOVELY BUT.
Iriel Also Niall I honestly can t remember if I was intrigued by him the first time I read WICKED LOVELY, but I love how Marr developed his character in this second installment as much as I love Bad Boys, I also have a significant weakness for Complex Lives by his Troth Guys Not to be confused with Nice Guys whispers who are boring Even if you don t share my weaknesses, most of you can agree that both Bad Boys and Complex Lives by his Troth Guys are better than frat boy dumb dumbs like Keenan.
And Leslie is a heartbreakingly tragic heroine So damaged, yet so strong I may not have made the same decision she did, but I understand why she did it, and I love her for it.
The story was great The characters were great The folklore is great The writing was great there s a theme in there What does it mean when nightmares dream of peace When shadows wish for lightI loved Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr as much as I didn t love WICKED LOVELY the first go round The contrast was shocking, and I can t think of a series where the payoff for sticking it out after a mediocre first book is better Highly recommended.