Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Ink and Shadows by Rhys Ford

Ink and Shadows by Rhys Ford

Review by Lauren

Source: copy for review; all opinions are my own

Official Summary: Kismet Andreas lives in fear of the shadows.

For the young tattoo artist, the shadows hold more than darkness. He is certain of his insanity because the dark holds creatures and crawling things only he can see—monsters who hunt out the weak to eat their minds and souls, leaving behind only empty husks and despair.

And if there’s one thing Kismet fears more than being hunted—it’s the madness left in its wake.
The shadowy Veil is Mal’s home. As Pestilence, he is the youngest—and most inexperienced—of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, immortal manifestations resurrected to serve—and cull—mankind. Invisible to all but the dead and insane, the Four exist between the Veil and the mortal world, bound to their nearly eternal fate. Feared by other immortals, the Horsemen live in near solitude but Mal longs to know more than Death, War and Famine.

Mal longs to be… more human. To interact with someone other than lunatics or the deceased.
When Kismet rescues Mal from a shadowy attack, Pestilence is suddenly thrust into a vicious war—where mankind is the prize, and the only one who has faith in Mal is the human the other Horsemen believe is destined to die.

Review: Ink and Shadows is published by DSP Publications, which releases LGBT fiction that is more than just the romance. In the case of this novel, it is a mystery/paranormal novel that focuses mostly on human Kismet who sees the danger within the shadows and Mal, or Pestilence, one of the Four Horsemen who eventually meets Kismet and immediately knows he must help him. There is a bit of romantic overlay to some of the characters, but honestly, it's not featured much. I think there is bound to be more in the sequel, and I am excited about that, but I like that Ink and Shadows helped set up the storyline and characters with a great, suspenseful storyline.

Kismet is hooked on heroin, but he's immediately likeable. You know that he's had a really difficult life, and the ghost of his younger brother follows him almost everywhere. He only takes drugs to keep the creatures he sees in the shadows at bay. Within the Veil is where the Four Horsemen, and other immortals, live. Normally, if a human can see things in the Veil, it means they are insane, but while he may feel like he is, Kismet is far from crazy.

As for Mal, he's the youngest Horsemen (Death, War, and Famine are the other three), and he's still having difficulties with his fighting skills and generally feeling a part of the group. He's a bit more human than the rest, so when he meets Kismet during a fight, he's immediately attracted to him in a way, but it's more about helping someone and feeling close to another person.

The big mystery in Ink and Shadows concerns Kismet and why he can see into the Veil, and yet is not crazy. Since this book is told in third person point of view, Ford follows various characters to give a full story. This way the reader knows more than some of the characters and it keeps you turning the pages to witness the outcome.

Ink and Shadows is an imaginative, enjoyable novel. Please come back Thursday for an interview with Rhys Ford!


Blogoratti said...

It must be an enjoyable read, nice review and thanks for sharing!

Books And Authors Spot said...

This book looks so intruiguing!! I think I'll enjoy it!! Amazing review!

Erika Sorocco said...

This sounds like such a unique storyline.


Tracy Terry said...

This sounds great, that bit different from the usual 'supernatural' books that seem to be flooding the market.

Melanie said...

Ooh okay so this publishing house sounds darn awesome! I've been really wanting to read more LGBTQ and increasingly I find it only limited to just contemporary romance novels which is kinda sad. I shall look into this one now!

Loved your review Lauren <33

Brandi Kosiner said...

Good to hear it was likable characters

Kindlemom said...

I love the originality to this and that it was way more than a romance! Great review!

Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings said...

This is definitely different in the LGBT genre.

Aylee said...

I'm all for speculative fiction that keeps romance in the background - be it LGBT or straight - because I'm just not a big romance girl, so this sounds pretty good to me!

Bidisha said...

This is so interesting.

Generally, I think stories about the Horsemen have been done to death, but I like this LGBT spin on this. I'm very intrigued.

Adriana Garcia said...

I've never heard of a book being remotely like this so I'm already really excited. I like that the foundation of mystery and suspense is laid down in Ink and Shadows. I'm interested to see the romance grow though because I love, love.

Alise said...

I'm really intrigued, it sounds like this one is unique in almost every way and I'm always down for an original story.

Sharons Book Nook! said...

This one sounds like an interesting read. Great review!

Krysten Quiles said...

The cover alone is pretty awesome!

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird

Krysten Quiles said...

The cover alone is pretty awesome!

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird

Krysten Quiles said...

The cover alone is pretty awesome!

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird

Marianne @ The Book Belles said...

I love the cover and the book actually sounds pretty good. Kismet means "destiny" so I'm curious how that played a part in the story (if it did!). Great review!

Marianne @ Boricuan Bookworms.

Jennifer Humphries said...

Oh wow this is a new and original storyline, free of vampires and the lot. I like the sound of it!

Lindy Gomez said...

I think a story about the Horsemen of the Apocalypse sounds so unique and interesting. Great Review Lauren :)

Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

Anna (herding cats-burning soup) said...

That's got some nice little bits of unique happening. Thanks for the intro!