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Ink [Kindle Edition]

Sabrina Vourvoulias , Bart Leib
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $13.95
Kindle Price: $5.99
You Save: $7.96 (57%)


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Book Description

Are you marked for disappearance?

What happens when rhetoric about immigrants escalates to an institutionalized population control system? The near-future, dark speculative novel INK opens as a biometric tattoo is approved for use to mark temporary workers, permanent residents and citizens with recent immigration history - collectively known as inks.

Set in a fictional city and small, rural town in the U.S. during a 10-year span, the novel is told in four voices: a journalist; an ink who works in a local population control office; an artist strongly tied to a specific piece of land; and a teenager whose mother runs an inkatorium (a sanitarium-internment center opened in response to public health concerns about inks).

The main characters grapple with ever-changing definitions of power, home and community; relationships that expand and complicate their lives; personal magicks they don’t fully understand; and perceptions of “otherness” based on ethnicity, language, class and inclusion. In this world, the protagonists’ magicks serve and fail, as do all other systems - government, gang, religious organization - until only two things alone stand: love and memory.

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Editorial Reviews


"Vourvoulias masterfully weaves an increasingly complex parallel universe at once fantastical and eerily familiar: a not-so-farfetched future world where myth and legend cohabit with population control schemes, media cover-ups, and subcutaneous GPS trackers. She takes us on a whirlwind, goose-bump-inducing exploration of the dualities of life and death, the light and darkness of the human spirit, the indelibility of ink as both marker and recorder of our lives and the shape-shifting, vile nature of colonialism and bigotry. By the time you reach the novel s bittersweet ending, you will know: this story is as immortal as the souls of the nahuales of our ancestors lore, and perhaps just as powerful" --~ Elianne Ramos, vice-chair of Latinos in Social Media (LATISM)

"Readers will be moved by this call for justice in the future and the present." --Publisher's Weekly

"A chilling tale of American apartheid, and the power of love, myth and community." --Reforma

About the Author

Sabrina Vourvoulias is a Latina newspaper editor, blogger and writer. An American citizen from birth, she grew up in Guatemala and first moved to the United States when she was 15. She studied writing and filmmaking at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, N.Y. In addition to numerous articles and editorial columns in several newspapers in Pennsylvania and New York state, her work has been published in Dappled Things, Graham House Review, La Bloga’s Floricanto, Poets Responding to SB 1070, Scheherezade’s Bequest at Cabinet des Fees, We’Moon, Crossed Genres #24, the anthologies Fat Girl in a Strange Land and Crossed Genres Year Two, and is slated to appear in upcoming issues of Bull Spec and GUD magazines. Her blog Following the Lede ( was nominated for a 2011 Latinos in Social Media (LATISM) award. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and daughter. Follow her antics on Twitter @followthelede.

Product Details

  • File Size: 447 KB
  • Print Length: 236 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0615657818
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Crossed Genres Publications (October 3, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009LL3YRU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #184,121 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Graceful Telling Of Difficult Truths March 10, 2013
Format:Paperback|Amazon Verified Purchase
I loved this book. It was troubling, funny, beautiful, exciting. The near-future dystopian crisis of immigration rings truer every day and the characters are alive. INK guides us through a broken, angry world through the POVs of various players in the coming culture wars. Each struggles through the emotional, political landscape of privilege, power and heartbreak as the carnage of xenophobia drives faultlines between families, friends and lovers. There are a few moments I wanted more from; at times we switch into someone else's mind just when I was warming to the character we'd been with. Ultimately, INK achieves that most-difficult balance between telling the hard truths about our troubled future and weaving an engaging, page-turning story.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, thought provoking book! April 9, 2014
By janeg
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this book, which tells a not-too distant future tale of America's immigration policy, told through the eyes of four characters. The story interweaves mystical elements throughout, which adds an interesting additional perspective. I couldn't put it down, definitely a great read!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great read. All too possible. November 18, 2013
By tld
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
I said while I was reading this book that there were many times I had to close the book (turn off the Kindle) and walk away because it was too possible. I can see the path that leads from the now I live in to the events of this book. I can see it clearly in the proposed laws about identification and education. I can see people and officials desiring a way to mark people permanently, so they and we can never mistake or forget who they are.

The inks in this book--those marked with tattoos denoting their immigration status--are, as they are in this world, Latinos. All Latinos. Even those who are citizens are tattooed, likely so that even they can some day be rounded up. (Notice, every Latino is tattooed. Not every immigrant, every Latino. No matter how many generations back their family came to the US, no matter their legal immigration status. Because it isn't immigration that's the true issue, it's race.)

Something that struck me in particular was a scene where a white man and a Latina woman were discussing proposed ink regulations. She was upset by it, because even though she was a citizen she could see how this harmed her. He commented something along the lines of it is what it is, easily accepting these laws because they didn't directly harm him. This is now. This is institutionalized racism.

I also said once during reading that a certain couple was making me grin like a fool while I was reading about their courtship. The characters in this book feel so real in themselves and in their various relationships. Some are lovers, some friends, some only acquaintances, but all are brought together by this process and all live their lives with it constantly in the background. And that's part of the message: that they keep living their lives, and the fight goes on.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent first novel July 3, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
One thing science fiction has always done well is use a futuristic or alternative universe to comment on today's political and social controversies. In her excellent first novel, Ink, Sabrina Vourvoulias takes some of today's hysteria about immigrants (illegal and otherwise) and pushes it a bit further. In her novel, all immigrants (included those who have become citizens) are identified by mandatory tattoos, leading eventually to forced incarceration, sterilization and deportation.

Sabrina tells her tale through the eyes of a variety of protagonists, both "tats" (as the tattoo'd are labeled) and not. And while this isn't a perfect novel -- it finishes a bit too abruptly for my taste, and the fantasy element occasionally felt a bit forced -- on the whole, it works beautifully, to the point where I found it hard to put it down until the end.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and Timely July 1, 2013
By Shannon
I could not put this book down. It is a peek into a dystopian future if we continue to allow hate and prejudice to cloud our hearts and minds as a society. Told from many different points of view, Ink is full of heroism, love, and the idea that we can make the world a better place. Read it, be inspired.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Latina Handmaid's Tale December 7, 2012
If Margaret Atwood were Latina, this eerily believable depiction of where U.S. immigration policy is heading is the novel she would have written instead of The Handmaid's Tale.
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More About the Author

Sabrina Vourvoulias was born in Bangkok, Thailand -- the daughter of a Mexican-Guatemalan visual artist and an American businessman. She grew up in Guatemala and moved to the United States when she was fifteen. Her poetry has appeared in Dappled Things, Graham House Review, Scheherezade's Bequest at Cabinet des Fées, La Bloga's Floricanto, Poets Responding to SB 1070, and upcoming in Bull Spec; her fiction in Crossed Genres Issue 24, and in the Crossed Genres Year Two and Fat Girl in a Strange Land anthologies, and upcoming in Strange Horizons, GUD magazine and the anthology Menial: Skilled Labor in SF. Her novel, Ink ( was released by Crossed Genres Publications October 15, 2012, and was named to Latinidad's "Best Books of 2012" list in December. Her blog Following the Lede ( was nominated for a Latinos in Social Media (LATISM) award in 2011. Follow her on twitter as followthelede.


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