After the epic events of Inkheart, Meggie is drawn into the world of Inkheart and all its dangers. The author Fengolio, now inside the world he invented needs Meggie help to regain control over his story as the dark characters in the Inkworld plan to cause more death. Inkspell is a novel about complex characters and their individual stories in the Inkworld.
Inkspell is an interesting book because it explores the idea of a book re-writing itself. Fengolio imagined a world that is simple, beautiful but full of death and murderers. The story behind Dustfinger was also interesting to read about as you begin to understand why Dustfinger was desperate in the first book to return to the world in Inkheart.
The introduction of new characters, like the Black Prince, helps shape Inkspell into a classic young adult fantasy novel very much similar to C.S Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia. However, Inkspell is far darker than Narnia, but still is overall an enjoyable read.
Also, as a passionate reader I do have a soft spot for books which show why books are magical and important in modern society. Elinor, Meggie’s Great Aunt, is disappointed that she was left behind in the real world. Reality can be cruel so an escape from reality is useful in creating a more positive mindset. Meggie is 13 years old and growing up whilst Elinor wishes to be child like again. The author is clearly sending a message, that you are never too old for fairy tales.
My main issue with Inkspell was the first half of the novel. To me it felt like a book that was not originally planned when Inkheart was written. There is a lot of world building going on, more than usual for a second book in a fantasy novel. Moreover, I felt that Roxanne, Dustfinger’s wife, was slightly underdeveloped as a character. Although, this should be changing in the third and final book in the trilogy.
Overall Inkheart is a good fantasy novel, despite the slow start. A fun and dark fantasy novel that reads like a traditional fairy tale. Meggie’s maturing character is well done in contrast to the other characters who are in danger of losing everything. The novel is largely about death, but is worth reading, especially if you are a fan of fantasy and fairy tales.
Rating: 4.4/5 stars