Title: The Girl of Ink and Stars
Author: Kiran Millwood Hargrave
Publisher: Chicken House UK
Length: 288 Pages
Forbidden to leave her island, Isabella Riosse dreams of the faraway lands her father once mapped.
When her closest friend disappears into the island’s Forgotten Territories, she volunteers to guide the search. As a cartographer’s daughter, she’s equipped with elaborate ink maps and knowledge of the stars, and is eager to navigate the island’s forgotten heart.
But the world beyond the walls is a monster-filled wasteland – and beneath the dry rivers and smoking mountains, a legendary fire demon is stirring from its sleep. Soon, following her map, her heart and an ancient myth, Isabella discovers the true end of her journey: to save the island itself.
I’ve been hearing a lot about The Girl of Ink and Stars ever since it was released in May, so I knew it was a must-read for me. I was drawn to it initially because I really like maps- and a cartographer’s daughter seemed like such a unique character to write. I was so happy I put this on my to-read list. It was such a pleasant story- so charming and uplifting and refreshing. Not to mention the book itself was beautifully designed. The cover is flawless and the internal pages are so pretty. It’s a quick read- I finished it in about half a day.
The two things I loved the most was the world the author designed and the characters she created. Joya was so awesome! It was magical and surrounded by myths- my favorite kind of island! The way it was written was so tangible, and I had no problems getting immediately immersed in Isabella’s world. Speaking of Isabella, her character and her relationships were lovely to read…and I don’t throw the word lovely around lightly. I felt such a connection to her…and the author used that to further the plot along nicely. I also loved how friendship and love were at the center of everything.
The story unfolded slowly and at a perfect pace. It did a great job conveying its themes: friendship and love and loyalty and dreams. It had adventure and magic and friendship and family…and the writing was seriously great. I definitely recommend this book. I think it’s marketing for middle grade and early YA readers, but I think it’s one of those rare stories that anyone of any age would enjoy.