Ink

Ink

5.0 1
by Damien Walters Grintalis
     
 

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A tattoo can be a work of art…or a curse. The devil is in the details.

The fearsome griffin inked on Jason’s arm looks real enough to climb off and take flight. Jason thinks his new tattoo is perfect. Until he wakes up one night to find his arm temporarily ink free. Until he finds a brick wall where the tattoo shop should be.

Overview

A tattoo can be a work of art…or a curse. The devil is in the details.

The fearsome griffin inked on Jason’s arm looks real enough to climb off and take flight. Jason thinks his new tattoo is perfect. Until he wakes up one night to find his arm temporarily ink free. Until he finds a brick wall where the tattoo shop should be.

As Jason’s world spins out of control, he comes to realize a truth as sharp as the griffin’s talons. The tattoo is alive, it’s hungry, and if Jason tries to kill it, he’ll die. The artist will remove it for a price, but he’s not interested in money or Jason’s soul. He wants something far worse…

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Distraught after his domineering wife, Shelley, leaves him for her best friend, Jason Harford meets an unnerving stranger in a bar who offers to ink him a tattoo. Only after a long, bloody ordeal does Jason realize what the reader knew from the beginning: that the griffin tattooed on his arm is terrifyingly alive and getting rid of it could prove utterly hellish. Until then, the hero of Grintalis’s disappointing debut remains, all too conveniently for the plot, passive and oblivious to his problems. The stock characters otherwise populating the novel include, in addition to the shrewish Shelley, Jason’s sexist best friend, Brian; his strong, kind father; and his beautiful, understanding new girlfriend, Mitch. The pace picks up near the end, only for Jason’s long-delayed transformation into alpha male to occur in unintentionally hilarious fashion, undermining any sense of gravitas before the gruesome, lurid climax. Agent: Mark McVeigh, the McVeigh Agency. (Dec.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781619210790
Publisher:
Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
Publication date:
12/04/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
357
File size:
2 MB

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Ink 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Talekyn More than 1 year ago
Damien Walters Grintalis' first novel builds on the promise shown in her published short stories: characterization, solid pacing and a very good sense of when and when not to show us the monster/evil/gore. With the exception of a few key cut-away scenes, Grintalis keeps us firmly in Jason's point of view throughout the book. Thanks to this, we understand why he reaches the (false) conclusions about what's going on that he reaches. In Jason, we're not given just another horror novel lead who is oblivious despite the signs -- we're given someone who sees logical explanations for what's going on around him, until he reaches a point where he realizes what we've known all along: nothing is as it seems. Jason is a character who starts out an emotional wreck, finds a new inner-strength, and then comes to doubt/lose that strength as the real world falls away and he has to make a choice to be the wreck or the strong one. This character arc for Jason is the heart of the book and what makes it not just another gory book about tattoos-gone-bad. In fact, there isn't a lot of on-screen gore throughout most of the novel. We're given hints about what happens off-screen, but Jason largely sees only the aftermath of these events. This is key not only in allowing him to continue to be slightly oblivious to the truth, but also to the pacing of the novel and the ratcheting up of suspense that Grintalis does so well, and makes the use of gore later in the story that much more effective. Several supporting characters are well-drawn (pun intended) as well: Jason's ex-wife Shelley, his mother and father, and his new girlfriend Mitch all add flavor to the story. if I have any complaint about the supporting cast, it's that so many of them are so well-crafted that it becomes extremely noticeable when a character is lacking in characterization: Alex, the gum-chewing kid from up the block, feels like a macguffin at the most, a place-holder at the least. For a character mentioned so often and who is a focus of Jason's rationalizations for what's going on, he feels the most "stock" of the supporting cast. And then there's the tattoo artist Jason calls "Sailor," who goes by the name John S. Iblis. "Sailor" creeped me out from the first scene he appears in, and continued to be no less creepy (and in fact, far more so) as the book goes on. Most astute horror readers will recognize right away who "Sailor" actually is, but that doesn't take away from the story itself; who he is isn't the central mystery, after all. What he wants, and whether he'll get it or not, is the question. A question Grintalis answers solidly in a climactic scene that is a bloody, intense, tidal-shifting ride even though it never leaves one room.