Inkmistress

Inkmistress

Asra is a demigod with a dangerous gift: the ability to dictate the future by writing with her blood. To keep her power secret, she leads a quiet life as a healer on a remote mountain, content to help the people in her care and spend time with Ina, the mortal girl she loves.But Asra’s peaceful life is upended when bandits threaten Ina’s village and the king does nothing to...

DownloadRead Online
Title:Inkmistress
Author:Audrey Coulthurst
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Inkmistress Reviews

  • Lea (drumsofautumn)

    Inkmistress is an

    It has so many great elements to it and does everything so very well. There's not a single person I wouldn't recommend this to.

    I don't even know where to start this review because I simply loved everything about this book so much. It has been a really long time since a n

    Inkmistress is an

    It has so many great elements to it and does everything so very well. There's not a single person I wouldn't recommend this to.

    I don't even know where to start this review because I simply loved everything about this book so much. It has been a really long time since a novel has taken me by surprise as much as this did. I went into it with hesitant excitement because I was curious to read more by Audrey Coulthurst but I wasn't the biggest fan of the plot in

    and also I don't really like to read about dragons. So seeing the dragon on the cover definitely curbed my excitement as well.

    But then I

    of this book. If you look at my updates there was not one part that I didn't enjoy. I didn't want to stop reading and the further I got into this, the more elements I loved were added.

    The first thing I noticed was the writing. I was able to be immediately invested in the story because the

    It's nothing intense, it's easy to read and understand but everything is described with such wonderful simple metaphors, that it's just really easy to understand the character's thoughts and feelings.

    The world building was fantastic. That was actually one of the parts I really enjoyed in Of Fire and Stars and so I was hoping Inkmistress would deliver as well and OH BOY, it did. The

    so you constantly crave for more information about it. Audrey Coulthurst has created this whole, wonderful universe and I hope she writes much more stories set in this world!

    I absolutely loved the

    She had amazing character development and I thought every single train of thought she had was, while not always reasonable, understandable. I loved how she had moments where she just wanted to give up on her big plan to save her home, where she just wanted to leave with the people she loves and leave everything else behind. She was weak and naïve in many parts but so strong and selfless in others. She is a demigod and powerful but also so human and always a little bit afraid of her own abilities.

    There were also so many amazing side-characters. I loved the male love interest because he was such a SOFT BOY and I just wanna hug him, give him flowers and put him in a blanket and I hope he is okay at all times.

    The villain was so kick-ass too. Their whole development was so interesting and well done. So many things were upsetting to see but at the same time I thought even the villains decisions were at all times relatable and it was easy to understand their perspective.

    All of these great characters lead to great relationships as well. There was

    There really wasn't a relationship I wasn't invested in in some way. Even with characters we're supposed to hate, Coulthurst manages to write their relationships in ways that will make you care.

    As in Of Fire and Stars, Audrey Coulthurst does an amazing job at sexuality representation. In this world there's

    Asra is in love with a girl in the beginning of the story and falls for a boy throughout the novel and it's never once brought up as an issue or something confusing.

    Overall I'd highly recommend this novel to everyone, I truly do. I think

    and it is a story that will not let me go for a while.

  • J.A. Ironside

    ARC provided by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

    UPDATE: changing my rating to 5 stars because I just can't stop thining about this book. It really is that good.

     

    Inkmistress was a surprise and a delight. I’d seen such luke warm reviews of Coulhurt’s work that I had let reading her books slide down my list of priorities. Inkmistess – prequel to Of Fire and Stars but set a long time before the events of that book – showed me just what I’d been missing.

     

    On one hand I do understand the mor

    ARC provided by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

    UPDATE: changing my rating to 5 stars because I just can't stop thining about this book. It really is that good.

     

    Inkmistress was a surprise and a delight. I’d seen such luke warm reviews of Coulhurt’s work that I had let reading her books slide down my list of priorities. Inkmistess – prequel to Of Fire and Stars but set a long time before the events of that book – showed me just what I’d been missing.

     

    On one hand I do understand the more negative reviews of the book. The MC is less flashy, less dynamic than is generally fashionable in YA fiction at present. If you tend not to like MC’s who agonise over doing the right thing, who are a little naïve and reticent, and over whom personal affection has a great hold than the call to adventure, then you may have a hard time bonding with Asra. I loved her - possible because she is so unlike me actually, and because she genuinely wants to do good. I appreciate someone who wants to live a quiet, simple life giving back to their community even if I can’t fully embrace that myself. The other thing to remember with Asra is that she has been secluded from other people most of her life, forbidden to speak of her powers. And they are potentially terrifying – the ability to shape the future or alter the past with her blood. Just let that sink in a moment. Now think about all the consequences that would result from either…yeah, that. She’s not fully in control of her power either and plenty of unscrupulous people think nothing of using her to shape the world to their liking.

    Hence Asra is really careful. If you mistake her wariness for lack of agency though, you’d be making a mistake. Personally I love the fact that we have a strong heroine here whose primary indicators of strength and agency are empathy and affection rather than the ability to kick ass. (I love a good female fighter but when authors use the ability to fight as shorthand for strength in a character with no other back up then all they are doing is creating another empty and potentially harmful stereotype.)

     

    Let’s talk diversity because this book does that well. There are different races and cultures represented, different sexualities and characters with disabilities. I’d call that a damn good start. And unlike certain other YA spec fic novels, Inkmistess presents this diversity as a facet of the characters rather than as a unique selling point where the character is literally their race or gender or sexuality and nothing else. I love that Asra is bisexual, and I love the fact that it’s presented as natural and no big deal. That it’s ok for her to have a relationship with a man as well as a woman and whoever she ends up with she’s still bisexual. Coulthurst has such a deft touch with this and portrays Asra’s sexuality believably and respectfully.

     

    The world building is fantastic. However it is narrative heavy and very descriptive. I mean we’re not talking Tolkien levels of description here but if you like your world building painted in short broad strokes you may not enjoy it. Personally I really liked the slow reveal of plot and world, and the beautiful prose used for both. The visuals conjured up are so vivid it’s like watching a movie. And this book is a long way from being devoid of action – plenty happens and there are several twists, turns and cliffhangers. (In fact my reading buddy, Melanie, who set the schedule left us on TWO exquisitely painfully cliffhangers so she shall forever more be known as the Cliffhanger Queen…) Which brings us onto the emotional content. If you hurt when a character hurts that’s a good sign that the author has caught your empathy and seriously some of the things that happen to Asra really hurt. This is not a passive read where you get to the end unscathed.

     

    If I have one criticism it’s that a couple of things happen too quickly for my taste – the end felt a little rushed for instance. That said it in no way detracted from the overall reading experience. This is a coming of age novel in a fantasy setting against apparently insurmountable odds. It’s a story about finding out who you are, distinct from what you’ve always believed about yourself, and about how to make choices and live with the consequences. But most of all it’s about new beginnings and its final message is one of hope. At turns bitter and sweet, and yearning, this is not to be missed.

    Buddy read with the lovely

  • Melanie

    Bisexuals who are with boys are still bisexual. Bisexuals who are with girls are still bisexual. Bisexuals who are with people who identify as nonbinary are still bisexual. Bisexuals who have never been with anyone are still bisexual.

    And the fact that I still have to say this, in 2018, is why

    is now one of my favorite

    Bisexuals who are with boys are still bisexual. Bisexuals who are with girls are still bisexual. Bisexuals who are with people who identify as nonbinary are still bisexual. Bisexuals who have never been with anyone are still bisexual.

    And the fact that I still have to say this, in 2018, is why

    is now one of my favorite YA Fantasies of all time. We need books, of all genres, that normalize sexuality in every aspect. But you all might not realize how rare it is to read a book about a bisexual girl ending up with a boy and still seeing her bisexuality beautifully on display. This book moved me to tears. And I believe with my whole heart that this book is going to be one of my all-time favorites.

    follows one of my new favorite protagonists, Asra, who lives her life secluded away in the mountains. She lives her life in hiding, only traveling down to the village below when weather permits it, to help them with births and other medicinal needs. Yet, some people still view her as a witch. But what Asra really is is so much more powerful.

    Asra has the power to change the future, present, and past with her blood. Yet, at a cost. To be able to wield such power, it takes from her lifeforce and ages her. But we soon learn that there isn’t anything she wouldn’t do for a girl who has accepted her when no one else has.

    Also in this world, people come into adulthood when they are able to manifest, or bond with an animal by being blessed by the six gods that truly do control this world. Obviously, some animals are more powerful than others, but the most important thing is to just be able to manifest.

    Asra feels like she has no other choice but to grant the girl, who she loves more than anything in this world, her wish: to finally manifest. And manifest Ina does. Into something more powerful than Asra imaged. Unfortunately, it is not the happiest of celebrations, because Asra learns again that it is a very scary thing to wish for something, and there will always be consequences of shaping the future.

    From there we are sent on a journey and an adventure, where Asra is trying to do the right thing, while also trying to learn who and what she really is. And I promise, it is nothing short of amazing. And we get to meet so many wonderful side characters. Even though I’m very biased towards Hal, who is a PoC who stole my heart completely. I instantly loved him. And let me tell you, the Romance in this book is everything I’ve ever wanted in my life, seriously.

    This book has such an important discussion on unconditionally love, and how you are always worthy and deserving of it. We see unapologetic heartbreak in this book, and it’s not easy to read, but it’s so important to read. Very rarely is your first love your only love, and sometimes you figure that out in a very hurtful way. And just in general, nothing hurts worse than when someone you love hurts you, betrays you, or chooses to not love you anymore. Learning that it is okay to love again, and that you are worthy of love, is something that so many people struggle with, myself included. And in case you need a reminder, from a random book reviewer:

    And I see people saying this feels info-dumpy? But I honestly didn’t feel like that at all. Maybe it is because I read so much Adult High and Epic Fantasy? But I easily understood and fell in love with the world and the world building. I thought it was super easy to understand, yet I was completely mesmerized at every new development. Like, I truly think this world was close to perfect in my eyes.

    And this is completely irrelevant to my rating, but I still have to shout it from the rooftops:

    And you all know I’ve read a lot of books, and this was the first time I have ever seen it printed in a story. And I’m not that big of a tease to not tell you all; the name is

    , and I first fell in love with it back 2011 when I first installed

    . Well, it’s 2018 and it is still my all-time favorite, so I couldn’t resist gushing. Also, to further prove that the universe perfectly aligned to put this book into my hands.

    And this book is truly a blessing. It had everything I like to see in my Fantasy: Girls with hidden powers, blood magic, herbal healing, gods, tyrant kings, traveling from city to city, secret societies, swoon-worthy romance, friendship, motherhood, twists, turns, betrayals, and… dragons. Honestly, I know I’m not even near considered a teen anymore, but I feel like I was completely targeted by this book. And I think so many of my Adult Fantasy reader friends would love this one, too.

    The writing is beautiful, the journey and adventure were perfection, the messages are so important. I was living for the feministic themes, I was swooning over the romance, I was crying over the reveals. I will carry this story with me forever, I will recommend this story to every fantasy lover I ever meet, I will always consider myself blessed to have been privileged enough to open this book.

    The only negative thing I can even think of saying is that I’m kicking myself that I haven’t read

    yet. I feel like this book did such a wonderful job hinting at what is to come, and I am so excited. I am 100% obviously telling you that you can read this first and completely enjoy the story, but I bet you’d get a lot of enjoyment if you have read

    .

    Overall, this was everything to me. It means more to me than I can say, or any word combination my fingers could type for you. I loved this. I truly loved this with the sum of my being. And the more I think about it, the more I fall in love with it. I just hope you all give it a try and fall in love with it, too.

    |

    |

    |

    |

    |

    Buddy read with

    ! ❤

  • lov2laf

    I did really enjoy this story. Ultimately, "Inkmistress" ends up giving some world building insight into "Of Fire and Stars" though that isn't blatant until the final chapter. It left me with an, "Ohhh, that's why". As this is a 0.5 story, it can be read as a standalone, before or after "Of Fire and Stars". The order isn't important. This definitely fleshed out the world of this series, though.

    Azra is an orphaned demi-god with no real understanding of her family, roots, or magic. She's a healer

    I did really enjoy this story. Ultimately, "Inkmistress" ends up giving some world building insight into "Of Fire and Stars" though that isn't blatant until the final chapter. It left me with an, "Ohhh, that's why". As this is a 0.5 story, it can be read as a standalone, before or after "Of Fire and Stars". The order isn't important. This definitely fleshed out the world of this series, though.

    Azra is an orphaned demi-god with no real understanding of her family, roots, or magic. She's a healer at heart and a kind, gentle person despite her magic being so dark. She loves with everything she has and it sets off a series of tragic events that she spends the rest of the book trying to undo.

    Do know that this read is a very long and slow epic journey for our lead, Azra. So tuck in. The characters are distinct and interesting and the story itself is well-written and lush but you'll get nothing fast. The narrative also has a sinister and hand wringing undertone for the entire read so if you want a suspenseful fantasy adventure you've come to the right place.

    I did really enjoy Azra's character so staying with her so long wasn't a bad thing.

    We also get a ton of unexpected twists and I found very little to be predictable. I was truly wondering how Azra was going to get out of her ever building high-stakes conundrum because I couldn't see how she would do it. I was satisfied with the ending.

    For those that felt the adventure aspect was missing from "Of Fire and Stars" because that plot takes place within the walls of a castle and the town that surrounds it, this book has it in spades. Azra rarely stays in one spot and is on the road in her quest.

    Coulthurst likes to write with LGBTQ characters and you'll definitely see that here. Azra herself is bisexual and supporting characters are bi, lesbian, straight, and gay. As in "Of Fire and Stars", sexuality is not an issue itself, it just is.

    If you're lesbian looking for an f/f story, I think you'll be disappointed. Though there are f/f relationships in the book, and our lead starts off in one, I wouldn't say the f/f relationships here are the healthiest and that's not where Azra ends up. It's not a matter of one preference for a certain gender overriding the other, however, and Azra doesn't have a roving eye. Azra takes a long while to build her relationships and she loves the person, not the gender.

    For ethnic diversity, some of the supporting characters are non-white and Azra's main love interest is black.

    Whether this is YA or not? It only leans towards YA because there's no swearing and sex occurs off page. I think Azra is in her late teens but there's an ageless feeling about the story because it's so nuanced and deals with emotional and violent drama. It can easily be consumed by kids and adults alike.

    I listened to the audiobook version of the story and the narrator, Billie Fulford-Brown, did a fantastic job. All of the voices were distinct and her intonations added to the suspense of it all.

    I recommend this book but only if you're in for a slow burn of a fantasy adventure and don't care whether our lead heroine ends up in a romantic relationship with a woman or man. 4.4 stars

    P.S. For dragon lovers, this book has one and she plays a big role.

  • Emma Giordano

    was one of my favorite books of 2017, so naturally I was ELATED to find out there was a prequel story. While I did enjoy

    , it just didn't have the excitement I felt while reading the first installment of this series. That being said, I am still very happy I picked up this story.

    As a note, I listened to the audiobook of this story and did not enjoy the narration very much. For some reason, I cannot stand British audiobook narrators that sound significantly older than

    was one of my favorite books of 2017, so naturally I was ELATED to find out there was a prequel story. While I did enjoy

    , it just didn't have the excitement I felt while reading the first installment of this series. That being said, I am still very happy I picked up this story.

    As a note, I listened to the audiobook of this story and did not enjoy the narration very much. For some reason, I cannot stand British audiobook narrators that sound significantly older than the actual YA protagonist? (Even though the audiobook narrator is pretty young). The narration just was not my cup of tea so I would maybe recommend sticking with the physical/ebook version of this book.

    is a prequel to

    though the stories are completely separate and you do not need to read one to read the other. As much as I enjoyed both, I don't think I would ever connect the two had I not known

    is a prequel before starting. Both stories are great, but I can scarcely find anything similar about these stories. They take place in different times and different kingdoms (which is to be expected of prequels), but what really confused me was even the magic system did not seem consistent despite taking place in the same overall world. I think I probably would have enjoyed

    more had there been a stronger connection to

    . In my opinion, the two are great, but completely independent high fantasy stories.

    I love Audrey Colthurst's writing style. The prose is beautiful and descriptive, though I do feel it is not 100% engaging. I enjoyed the romance of this story (Yay for more bisexual m/f representation!) and all of the characters, even the antagonists, are fascinating and well-developed. This series consistently features characters from the LGBTQ+ community, and now a main character of color and main character with a disability. I sincerely appreciate the author's contributions to diversifying young adult high fantasy. I also noted significant improvements to world-building and developing a magic system compared to her debut (Far from flawless, but more finely executed!)

    Overall, there weren't many significant flaws I found in

    , I just didn't love this book as much as I wanted to. I wasn't as invested in the storyline. The events of the story just weren't all that interesting to me. Though I liked the characters and romance, it is nowhere near the love I felt for

    . Nonetheless, I am happy I read this book.

  • Crazy4Books

    In Inkmistress we follow Asra, a demigod with the power to change the past and the future at a severe price. In this world people can manifest into animals by bonding with one with the blessing of one of the 6 Gods. After trying to help her lover find her manifest things go horribly wrong and some hurtful truths are revealed. On a mission to right her mistake Asra leaves the only home shes ever known in the hopes of stoping the monster she's created. I really wanted to love this because Im alway

    In Inkmistress we follow Asra, a demigod with the power to change the past and the future at a severe price. In this world people can manifest into animals by bonding with one with the blessing of one of the 6 Gods. After trying to help her lover find her manifest things go horribly wrong and some hurtful truths are revealed. On a mission to right her mistake Asra leaves the only home shes ever known in the hopes of stoping the monster she's created. I really wanted to love this because Im always on the look out for fantasy books with good bi representation, but this fell a little short for me.

    Asra is pretty naive and spends a majority of the book feeling bad which isnt something I tend to enjoy in a main character. I didnt dislike her, but I also didnt care a whole lot about her. Her decisions and reasoning didnt always make sense to me. I did really appreciate the way the bi representation was done and that one of the love interest was a person of color. I loved Hal from the moment I met him. He had his faults but he was also was funny and considerate. He was definitely one of the better parts of the story.

    I could tell right away that Asras crush was manipulating her. I didnt understand why Asra loved Ina and since I personally didnt like Ina from the moment I met her I had a difficult time feeling sympathy for Asras broken heart. Good riddance if you ask me. I still dont understand why Ina spent an entire summer with Asra if she didnt care about her. I know she said Asra was suppose to help her become an elder, but she spent an entire summer with her and didnt get any closer to becoming an elder so that logic doesnt make sense to me. There was also a few other things that just didnt add up.

    The writing was alright, but not as gripping as I would have liked. I struggled to feel excited about picking this up and stay focused during the slower parts. Theres a lot of traveling and details that I just wasnt interested in. For the most part, I did enjoy the world and the addition of the dragon. The plot is set in motion due to a bad decision on the main characters part and thats my least preferred way of moving a plot along. Not to mention her goal throughout the whole book is to do the same thing that put her in this mess to start with. I was also able to predict most of the story.

    *received for review consideration*

  • Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)

    Despite what a certain review implies, there is

    This does not "undermine" her sexuality or make previous relationships any less valid.

    ... there IS something wrong with info-dumps though. Lots and lots of boring info-dumps that made it really hard to push through this story?

    soon, probably, maybe.

    ---------

    I didn't know this was a prequel when I requested it?? But I'm here for bisexuals and blood magic

  • Brittany (Brittany's Book Rambles)

    "Bisexuality, bloodshed, dragons, & doom"

    THIS SOUNDS AMAZING, I NEED THIS BOOK IN MY LIFE!

    But Winter 2018?!?! Noooooooo....

    *dies*

  • ☙ percy ❧

    YA characters: i have this amazing power to dictate the future using my blood but i must keep it secret and Never Use or Abuse it

    me as a character: *using Umbridge's Blood Quill* tomorrow eddie redmayne will come to my house and profess his undying love for me and we will get married and live happily ever af --

Best Free Books is in no way intended to support illegal activity. Use it at your risk. We uses Search API to find books/manuals but doesn´t host any files. All document files are the property of their respective owners. Please respect the publisher and the author for their copyrighted creations. If you find documents that should not be here please report them


©2018 Best Free Books - All rights reserved.