It feels like it's been a while since I read an action packed, adventure book and then Girl of Ink and Stars comes along and immediately fills that gap. Before I get onto the story though, I must show some book cover appreciation. It is stunning and if you do manage to pick up a copy then the inside is just as gorgeous and also comes with a map- currently one of my favourite things for a book to contain.
This was such a beautifully crafted, well put together story, full of magic, friendship and bravery. Upon opening, my imagination was immediately whisked away to the island of Joya. It felt fairytale like in its storytelling and its setting and I got completely lost in amongst the pages.
The writing for this just beautiful, it describes everything so perfectly without going over the top like some books do. It was vivid, lyrical and just stunning to read. It also brings a brilliant mix of characters with a believable young heroine that is Isabella and a villain that lives up to his name. I was particularly impressed with theme of friendship running throughout the story with Isabella and her best friend knowing no bounds when it comes to looking out for one another. Isabella is an impressive protagonist who isn't afraid to speak her own mind and do what is right. She is definitely someone who I think middle grade children will look up to.
What made this a unique story for me was the idea of maps and cartography and what has clearly inspired the small illustrations running throughout the book. I loved this idea of drawing maps and following the stars to pinpoint where you are. I think it heightened the sense of mystery and intrigue and really made you feel that you were on an adventure with Isabella.
The Girl of Ink and Stars was a fantastic debut and for me it has filled the long gap in adventure books for me. I felt utterly enraptured whilst reading and I know that children of middle grade age will adore this wonderful book.