Review: Ink and Bone

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Book Title: Ink and Bone
Author: Lisa Unger
Series: Standalone, but also correlates with The Hollows
Genres: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Paranormal Fiction, Horror

Date Read: 05/27/16
Pub Date: 06/07/16

Twenty-year-old Finley Montgomery is rarely alone. Visited by people whom others can’t see and haunted by prophetic dreams, she has never been able to control or understand the things that happen to her. When Finley’s abilities start to become too strong for her to handle – and even the roar of her motorcycle or another dazzling tattoo can’t drown out the voices – she turns to the only person she knows who can help her: her grandmother Eloise Montgomery, a renowned psychic living in The Hollows, New York.

Merri Gleason is a woman at the end of her tether after a ten-month-long search for her missing daughter, Abbey. With almost every hope exhausted, she resorts to hiring Jones Cooper, a detective who sometimes works with psychic Eloise Montgomery. Merri’s not a believer, but she’s just desperate enough to go down that road, praying that she’s not too late. Time, she knows, is running out.

As a harsh white winter moves into The Hollows, Finley and Eloise are drawn into the investigation, which proves to have much more at stake than even the fate of a missing girl. As Finley digs deeper into the town and its endless layers, she is forced to examine the past, even as she tries to look into the future. Only one thing is clear: The Hollows gets what it wants, no matter what.

Wow. Where to begin. For those of you who have followed all her series and other books involving “The Hollows”, this one is a BIG deal. No spoilers here, but there is major character and plot development. I’ve read almost all of Lisa Unger’s books; I was first hooked when I picked up a copy of Fragile in the B&N clearance section and she quickly became one of my top 10 authors to read after devouring Beautiful Lies, Sliver of Truth, Black Out, & Die For You. I’ve read all her other books as well, save for her Whispers novellas (which I now realize is a huge mistake that I must remedy immediately; it really could have made my experience with this book just that extra bit perfect).

“Millions of spiritual creatures walk the earth
Unseen, both when we wake and when we sleep.”
-John Milton, Paradise Lost

In this book (which some would consider Book 3 in The Hollows series) we are reunited with Jones Cooper (former detective with Hollows PD and now freelance private investigator) and Eloise Montgomery (psychic and assistant to Jones Cooper in solving multiple past cases in The Hollows), but we are also introduced to a new character, Finley Montgomery, who is Eloise’s granddaughter. She has come to live with Eloise in an attempt to learn how to control her own psychic powers if you will. In an attempt to not rehash the book’s plot blurb, Finley discovers an overwhelming sound (Squeak, Clink) that will not leave her alone. She discovers this one is calling her, not Eloise, to come and solve the mystery with Jones.

“The girl was of this place; she belonged here more than she knew… She was unpredictable and wild, powerful, foolish, stubborn, like many children The Hollows had known.”

I loved, loved, LOVED this character Finley! She was a spitfire; tatted and wild with a quiet streak that works in conjunction with her ultimate stubbornness. This girl isn’t going to be pushed into doing anything she doesn’t want to (at least in the physical world).  She has regular “guests” (as I like to call them) that she sees and hears daily, but also new ones that pop up along the way. I also loved the relationship between her and (boyfriend-ish?) Rainer. I could picture them easily in my mind as if watching a movie and was a little sad to leave them when the book ended.

“Our choices, even the small ones, all have consequences.”

This book was intense. It was what I would consider genre-bending; yes there are paranormal elements but it was just as solid as any book I would read in the crime/thriller genre. I don’t typically read supernatural books, but Lisa’s have always felt so real that I can’t help but get caught up in them.  I can see why some threw in the Horror element, as the content was a bit disturbing but in a very realistic way (think Karin Slaughter in some of her graphic content/violence).  Very little sexual content in this one, which I was very pleased with, as this book needed the continual flow of the story without that extra distraction.

“The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep.
And miles to go before I sleep.”
-Robert Frost, Miles to Go

I know I said no spoilers, and I won’t spoil, but I have to warn you there are some big shocks at the ending regarding the direction of the series. I was so engrossed that I stayed up well past midnight finishing and read 70% of the book in one sitting because I just couldn’t put it down. There are some seriously emotional moments, but I’m not mad; I felt they were for the bettering of the story and needed to happen.  Big twists and turns guys; this is one of those stories that all the clues are in front of you from well near the beginning and its fun trying to piece them together after the big revelation of whodunit. If you are a fan of the series, PLEASE don’t miss this book! Its extremely crucial and addictive. I’m assuming there will be a follow up of some sort (PLEASE LISA DON’T LET ME DOWN) from the ending; I think we are just getting to know Finley in what will turn into a long, exciting adventure.  Highly recommended! Go pre-order, buy it, request it at your library; get your hands on it! If you’re new to the series, go pick up Fragile and start there.

“You cannot hide in the snow
No matter where you go
You leave a trail behind
That anyone can find.”

Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; Who looks inside, awakes.”
-Carl Jung

* I received a copy via NetGalley in exchange for an honest and fair review. This did not influence my opinions and all thoughts are my own.

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