For all the fans of the Inkheart series, by Cornelia Funke, the third book of the series is a "must-read"! While Inkspell left the Adderhead's life bound to the White Book, the story also left the blended family of the Inkworld re-united. Inkdeath begins with a village in peril and the Bluejay trying to set things right again.
The story continues with all the favorite characters of the Inkworld trying to protect the children from the cruel Adderhead. Although his life is now one of suffering, it only fuels his determination to seek revenge against the Bluejay and conquer the Castle of Ombra and all it's people. With the Adderhead's daughter, Violante, the newest heir to the throne, her father attempts to take it for himself. The characters are suffering at the hands of his soldiers and torn between their love for the Bluejay and their children's safety.
The last part of the book brings fascinating twists, originality beyond belief and redemption. A battle takes place, but not the kind with armies and combat. This is a battle of controlling the end of the story and taking one's rightful place in it. Funke includes a special treat after the battle, depicting the lives and future of the characters in the Inkworld. She leaves you imagining what might happen next, while satisfied of the current state of the characters at the same time. Although the book is about death, it was the ending of all endings, with the possiblility of a new character bringing about adventures in a different world.
I started Inkdeath in October, but found myself distracted by holidays and other must-reads because of the sadness of the state of the Inkworld. It was a bit depressing in the beginning and middle, with the characters disconnecting from each other as their world is falling apart around them. I found myself wishing Funke would share more of what Mortimer was feeling in this book. Funk's writing never promises a gooey-sweet happy ending so there's always the question of it ending in tragedy. Then there's the cover I couldn't stop looking at - what is that mysterious castle in the skull - it's not Ombra. This castle brings a refreshing change of scenery for the characters to interract in.
That said, the last third of the book was what did it for me - I couldn't put it down! The returning characters, the new characters and elements, and the question of whose death the book was about kept me enthralled to the very last page.
I give Inkdeath ****' 4 1/2 stars!
I can't wait to read Reckless - I can't help but wonder if it is inspired by the last character she hinted at in the end of Inkdeath......