Leora is reeling: questioning everything she has ever known about her family and herself.
As half-Marked and half-Blank, can she ever wholly belong in either fractured community? Mayor Longsight wants to use her as a weapon: to infiltrate Featherstone, home of the Blanks, and deliver them to him for obliteration. Leora longs for answers about her mysterious birth mother, and Featherstone may reveal them.
But will she find solace and safety there or a viper’s nest of suspicion and secrets?
I honestly almost didn’t pick this up. I found Ink very odd and a little off putting – I couldn’t get over the concept really (though in retrospect, I now feel I liked the story more than I rated it at the time). And the frustration of Leora constantly being lied to.
While some of that is true here, I actually really enjoyed Spark – by going to the Blank village, and learning the “other side” of the origins story, you get an interesting commentary on both religion and seeing an event from both sides. There’s a truly brilliant quote about that about a blanket that I am going to try and always keep in mind.
There is definitely the us and them mentality on both sides, and it’s pretty uncomfortable in places if I’m honest. But it’s also well written – Leora’s uncomfy response really comes across, as does her gradual realisation that her world view could be wrong.
I also found that, once away from the marks and the skin books (they still creep me out!), Broadway’s storytelling shines through. The tales she wove throughout the story were perfect – short but powerful. And there were twists a plenty, and politics on both sides.
I also really liked the ending, and am now really looking forward to book 3! Glad I picked this up, 3.5 stars.
Buy Spark from Amazon UK.