Author: Susan Vourvoulias
Publisher: Crossed Genres Publications
Year Published: 2012
Pages: 351 (in digital format)
First Line of Prologue: The source texts me.
I received a digital copy of Ink, by Sabrina Vourvoulias, as part of the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program. It took me a bit to get to it, and now it’s taken me even longer to squeeze in enough time to make a few comments on it.
The delay has absolutely nothing to do with Ink, which I liked quite a bit. I think it’s an extremely interesting “what if” scenario that isn’t exactly as far fetched as it may initially sound.
The story in a flash:
Set in a dystopic near-future, Ink takes place in a US that has taken extreme measures to stave off illegal immigration. Anyone not born in the US is given a color-coded tattoo according to their immigration status, citizen, resident, work visa, etc. The focus is primarily upon Mexican and Latin American immigrants, but it extends well beyond those particular borders.
Of course, there is a resistance movement, and it is there where the heroes and heroines of the story reside.
Told in multiple 1st person PoV chapters, I found the story itself quite intriguing and well-told. There is an extremely nice mix of dystopic SF and magical realism that I enjoyed very much. The PoV characters could have had more varied voices, though, and there were two or three that I was constantly mixing up in my head, especially when it wasn’t made clear early on in a chapter which character was doing the narrating.
There are a couple of moments, mainly key plot points, that I thought were rather contrived, but the overall effect they had on the story was nice. It was just the implementation that I thought rather clumsy.
Regardless, however, I think Ink is a quick and enjoyable read. It poses some interesting social questions that are of particular importance considering our current political climate, and doesn’t shy away from the hard, unpleasant answers that often come from our more extreme political and religious personalities.