The Girl of Ink & Stars, by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

The Girl of Ink & Stars is called Isabella, who goes on an adventure to search for the murderer of her friend, Cata.  She also wants to explore the Forgotten Territories to rediscover and create maps of these lands. The story is set on a fictional island called Joya, with an uncaring Governor, whose daughter Loupe, is best friends with Isabella. When the Governor refuses to do anything about the murder of Cata, Isabella gets angry with Lupe, saying her father is wicked. Lupe, determined to show Isabella that she is different to her father, runs away to find out who has killed Cata. Isabella, full of regret, follows her.

The book is very powerful. It is written in the first person, in Isabella’s voice, so I got to know about how Isabella feels about everything. I liked the descriptions of the monsters, because they reminded me of how I fear creatures like sharks.

Near the end of the book, Isabella and Lupe are in a cave trying to get out because it is filling up with the sea, the author makes it sound very tense, my heart always beats fast here. The author describes the water rising, pressure roaring through the heads and ears of the characters with breath forced from their chests. Reading this I understood how it might feel, because it reminded me of when I am diving to the bottom of a swimming pool.

This is an amazing story, I found there was so much to take in with every sentence that I read. BJMN

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