Inkheart: Review


Author: Cornelia Funke

Publisher: Chicken House

Summary: Twelve-year-old Meggie learns that her father, who repairs and binds books for a living, can “read” fictional characters to life when one of those characters abducts them and tries to force him into service.

Characters from books literally leap off the page in this engrossing fantasy. Meggie has had her father to herself since her mother went away when she was young. Mo taught her to read when she was five, and the two share a mutual love of books. He can “read” characters out of books. When she was three, he read aloud from a book called Inkheart and released characters into the real world. At the same time, Meggie’s mother disappeared into the story. This “story within a story” will delight not just fantasy fans, but all readers who like an exciting plot with larger-than-life characters. (Via Goodreads.)


This book should have been magical and it really wasn’t.

Inkheart is a strange book for me in that it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t good either. If I’m totally honest I feel quite indifferent to it. There is no real love or there is no real hate, there’s just a “meh” feeling.

For me the language in the book felt very stilted, maybe thats down to the fact that this book is translated from it’s original German, but you can tell by the choice of phrase that this book was supposed to leap from the page. It didn’t, not for me. It felt very flat and laboured. It just didn’t do anything for me. That being said there are some beautiful passages and quotes in this book, namely

“Books have to be heavy because the whole world’s inside them.”

But even that’s not enough to save it for me. It was just a difficult read.

The pacing too was not helpful. While Funke kept the plot moving well the book felt so very slow. Especially the first hundred pages, which I originally out down to the presence of Elinor who is without a doubt the most annoying character ever. I never thought I could hate a character that I know is played by Helen Mirren in a film but I did and I do. I mean, her nephew has just been kidnapped and she’s concerned over dust on her books? Seriously? The pacing of the book did pick up temporarily and I got very excited but once again it lulled and grew limp until it actually felt like a chore to keep reading.

The characters too didn’t appeal to me. They felt very flat, very dull, like they had no real emotions. It was all very blah.

I know a lot of people like this book, and will like this book but it just didn’t do anything for me. It should have been magical, it should have ensnared me, left me gagging for the next too books but it didn’t. It didn’t leave me feeling anything.

I didn’t hate this book, although it probably sounds like I did, I just didn’t feel anything for it.

2.5 Stars.


2 thoughts on “Inkheart: Review

  1. I’m sorry to hear you didn’t love this one. I read it way back when I was in elementary school and I really enjoyed it, but I was probably too young to notice some of what you mentioned. I never read the other books in the series, either. Great review, though! 🙂

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