Be warned that, although we ended up liking this book a lot, this review is going to be full of spoilers, including the ultimate twist.
This book is actually really frustrating until the very end. Mostly because everybody is an asshole and you expect Leslie to have to choose between two relationships that are very unhealthy. But she doesn't, and therein lies the brilliance of Ink Exchange.
Okay, to start this off we are going to talk about Aislinn, who is supposed to be Leslie's best friend. However, in the few months between Wicked Lovely and Ink Exchange, their relationship has deteriorated so that they no longer confide in one another, despite hugely traumatic events and changes happening to both of them. As the new Summer Queen, Aislinn is distant and doesn't want to share her new world with her friends. Leslie is coping with the aftermath of a rape instigated by her brother and isn't ready to confide in anyone. The relationship is tense, but things get worse when Irial, the Dark King, begins to take an interest in Leslie.
We understand that Aislinn wants to protect the people she loves from the fae, but she disappointed us the most because of her stubborn refusal to just tell Leslie what was going on. She could have prevented everything if she hadn't taken it upon her self to take away her friend's choices. Even if she didn't know what Irial was doing, she did know he was showing interest in Leslie, and she had a right to know what could happen. Aislinn should have warned her. It seems like common sense, but Aislinn's fear put her friend in danger.
Aislinn also knew about the rape, but never talked to Leslie about it. We understand wanting to allow Leslie to bring it up when she was ready, but Aislinn didn't even make herself available to a friend going through such a horrible ordeal. Then, in the middle of an argument between the two, she had the audacity to imply that Leslie was a slut. That's so fucked up, even more so because Leslie consoles herself with the belief that Aislinn doesn't know about her rape.
And then there's Keenan. We may not have liked him in Wicked Lovely, but we sympathized and we understood where he was coming from. In Ink Exchange he runs that all into the ground...
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