Blood, Ink and Fire by Ashley Mansour

blood ink fire

Imagine a world without books…
In the future, books are a distant memory. The written word has been replaced by an ever-present stream of images known as Verity. In the controlling dominion of the United Vales of Fell, reading is obsolete and forbidden, and readers themselves do not—cannot—exist.
But where others see images in the stream, teenager Noelle Hartley sees words. She’s obsessed with what they mean, where they came from, and why they found her.

Noelle’s been keeping her dangerous fixation with words a secret, but on the night before her seventeenth birthday, a rare interruption in the stream leads her to a mysterious volume linked to an underworld of rebel book lovers known as the Nine of the Rising. With the help of the Risers and the beguiling boy Ledger, Noelle discovers that the words within her are precious clues to the books of the earlier time—and as a child of their bookless age, she might be the world’s last hope of bringing them back.

Blood, Ink & Fire is a gripping, evocative tale that asks, who would we be without books? (Goodreads)

I received a copy of this from Netgalley via Upturn Publishing.

I am sorry to say that I ended up DNF-ing this book – which makes me sad. The premise of this book was so amazing and enticing, that when I actually opened this book, I was pretty disappointed.

I struggled to actually get into this book because of the pace. I feel like I was thrown into another world without any world building – I was confused and I felt lost. How did they get to where they are now and why is there a world without books. This book moved too fast for the reader to actually process what was going on.

The main character, Noelle, was difficult to empathise with. I didn’t feel connected to her like any reader should with the main character – which is probably why this book was unsuccessful for me.

From reading other reviews on Goodreads, it seems like this book is a marmite case – you either love it or you hate it. For those who have no idea what marmite is, it is an English thing that is put on toast which isn’t really easy to explain. Salty, gooey black stuff, I guess. You have to try it to understand!

I gave this book 1/5 stars.

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