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review 2015-05-18 02:21
Inked by Eric Smith
Inked - Eric Smith

Ah, Inked. I'm still not sure where I stand on this book. The concept of tattoos imbued with magical powers fascinated me. The premise held so much promise of a world that I could get lost in. Alas, while there were a lot of pieces that I did enjoy, this wasn't exactly what I hoped for.


The world building was the first thing that left me on the fence. A world where magical tattoos determine the wearer's fate should have swept me up. The fact that there was an evil empire to fight back against would normally have pulled me in. The problem was, that this world building wasn't ever fully realized. Inked is rather short for a fantasy story. It flew by, so quickly that I wasn't able to grab a hold of anything. Sure, the magical tattoos were still fascinating. It just never went beyond that.


As for the characters, initially Caenum and Dreya were adorable. I loved the little bit of romance flowing between them. When Caenum decided that he wanted the opportunity to decide who he was, rather than allowing the magic to choose for him, I was smitten. That strength spoke to me. However these characters also suffered from the short length of this book. There wasn't much depth to them and so, even when the ending was happy, I wasn't that invested.


Great premise, but I really believe that it needed more time to come to fruition. 

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review 2015-03-13 22:24
Peachboy by Eric Metaxas
Peachboy (Rabbit Ears: a Classic Tale) - Eric Metaxas,Jeffrey Smith

Genre: Japan / Monsters / Fantasy / Folktale


Year Published: 1991


Year Read: 2008


Publisher: Rabbit Ears Books



“Peachboy” is one of the classics from Rabbit Ears’ “We All Have Tales” series and is probably the most dramatic and heartwarming story out of the whole series since East of the Sun, West of the Moon. With Sigourney Weaver’s tender narration, along with Ryuichi Sakamoto’s mesmerizing music and Jeffrey Smith’s beautiful illustrations, “Peachboy” is an instant classic that cannot be beat!

Sigourney Weaver’s narration is so tender and soothing that she helps reinforce the intensity of this story, especially during the scenes of the emotional loss for the parents who lost their children to the ogres. Ryuichi Sakamoto’s music brilliantly captures the Japanese influence of the story making this story dramatic. Jeffrey Smith’s illustrations are beautiful as they brilliantly capture the essence of the Japanese characters. The image that probably stood out the most would be the image of Momotaro himself as he has a small and distinguished looking mustache and wears a traditional green Japanese outfit with a red belt that makes him look more heroic.

Parents should know that the scene with the ogres might be a little scary to younger children. The ogres are drawn so realistically that smaller children will definitely be frightened and what will frighten children even more is the fact that these ogres had kidnapped many of the village’s children when they were young. This part of the story might scare young children as they will probably think that the ogres will kidnapped them at the middle of the night and parents should explain to their children that this is merely a fairy tale and that most of the creatures in this book (except the dog, pheasant and ape) are imaginary.

“Peachboy” is a fantastic tale from Japan about the true power of friendship and courage and children will easily watch this video over and over again. I would recommend this video to children ages five and up since the scenes with the ogres might be too scary for smaller children.

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog


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review 2015-02-08 19:57
Inked by Eric Smith
Inked - Eric Smith
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review 2015-01-19 04:09
Review: Inked
Inked - Eric Smith

Imagine a tattoo that moves and changes, and yet will determine your future. When citizens come of age, a Scribe "Inks" them, creating these tattoos that tell you who you are and what you will do. In a world without choice, only the Unprinted are rumored to have a semblance of freedom.


As the Scribes arrive, Caenum is tempted to run away, leaving behind his grandmother and his best friend Dreya. In the wrong place at the wrong time, Caenum is dragged into a race for freedom when a boy Scribe is newly Inked and finds himself to be a Conduit: A person who magic awakened by the Ink running under his skin. When the Citadel Guards destroy his entire town and the residents, Caenum, Dreya, and the Scribe Kenzi must keep themselves safe not only from the Citadel but also the assassin Molivar.


In this adventure, not everyone is who they seem, and a sanctuary may not actually be to keep you safe. A war between the Citadel and the Conduits is brewing, with Inked citizens trapped in the middle. A fun and exciting new book in what is hopefully a series, Inked may be marketing as a Young Adult novel but is interesting and dynamic enough to keep the interest of an adult as well! The author does a good job at introducing the characters and developing them over the course of the story so that you really want to like - or hate - them. I would love to see more about the workings of the Citadel and how the Inked came to be, but even without that information it is still a worthwhile story.


Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.




If you enjoyed my review, please help me share it by marking it as being helpful on Amazon. I have included the link to the Amazon review in the Source section at the bottom of this review.

Source: www.amazon.com/review/R3BVXPRSEPSNUD
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review 2014-12-29 16:08
Inked by Eric Smith - Review.
Inked - Eric Smith

Publication Date: 20th January 2015 from Bloomsbury Spark.


Source: Netgalley


Tattoos once were an act of rebellion.
Now they decide your destiny the moment the magical Ink settles under your skin.
And in a world where Ink controls your fate, Caenum can’t escape soon enough. He is ready to run from his family, and his best friend Dreya, and the home he has known, just to have a chance at a choice.


My love of all things YA led me to this one, I wasnt sure what to expect exactly but what I found was a wonderful read, highly enjoyable, something a little bit different and a great start to what I assume (hope) will be a series, as I definitely want more.


Caenum is due to get his Ink – a magical type of tattoo that defines your entire existence moving forward. He is not really that keen on this idea, but before he can run an unexpected set of events catapults him into a battle he is unprepared for and leads him to discoveries that will change his life forever.


There is a beautiful simplicity to the writing of this, gorgeous prose telling a magical tale and it was a real page turner – Eric Smith sets the scene delightfully and there are some wonderful characters to follow along with, some terrific world building and a real sense of an epic to come. There are thrills and spills, a touch of romance and an almost road movie feel to the whole thing, I really did enjoy the reading experience a great deal.


As a starting point this was cleverly done – I very much liked the idea of a Tattoo that “breathes” and changes, becoming part of you and giving focus, not always the focus you would like. The dystopian element is well drawn, the overseers of this world very much wanting everyone in their place and it makes for an excellent adventure overall.

Terrific stuff. Can’t wait to find out what happens next!


Happy Reading Folks!

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