I enjoyed Inked. A fantasy YA novel (not dystopian as I have seen mentioned in some reviews) where a tattoo decides your future. In your eighteenth year you receive a tattoo from the government Scribe that sets your station in life. The ink decides if you will be a farmer, merchant, cook or even assassin. This is a future Caenum does not want. He desires to make his own choice and is planning to run. Then his world upends and he and his best friend Dreya are forced to run. Trying to hide from the government trackers, dangerous rogues and magic wielders, they find allies in unlikely places and danger where they least expected it.
I enjoyed the world created by Eric Smith. Vivid and dynamic, it really made the book. The pacing was great, the action popped and the narrative flowed. The writing was solid. There were a few times in the beginning where I was slightly confused, but the story naturally filled in the gaps. The characters were well thought out and had depth. Caenum as the confused lead was a great narrator and the sidekicks each had their own solid place in the story. I also enjoyed the emotional quotient. Some books with male leads neglect the feelings aspect of the story, and this was not true in Inked. Caenum was open with his emotions and it enhanced the story.
Inked is a fresh fantasy read and I hope the start of a series. Eric Smith created a world I enjoyed and I would gladly step back into it. I normally prefer dystopian to fantasy, but this world was so vivid I was quickly engrossed. One of the things I enjoy best about having a book site is finding new to me authors and worlds. I am especially happy when I chance across one that I probably would not have found that is great. Inked and Eric Smith are one of these finds and I hope to be able to read another in this world soon.
Favorite lines -“Lose control once in a while, and your emotions will make your strong. Keep your heart open, and they’ll make you invincible.”
I received this book for free from YA Bound Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.