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Ink Mage (A Fire Beneath the Skin Book 1) by [Gischler, Victor]
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Ink Mage (A Fire Beneath the Skin Book 1) Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 513 customer reviews

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Length: 402 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


"With Victor Gischler finally dipping his blood drenched quill in the pool of epic fantasy, a fresh horde of fans should be gathering just outside his castle gate anticipating each new installment of the series." —Amazing Stories

"A fantastic fantasy novel with plenty of action, physical and magical, romance, politics, and settings that will thrill...Overall grade: A." —

About the Author

Victor Gischler was born in Sanford, Florida. He is a world traveler and earned his Ph.D. in English from the University of Southern Mississippi. He received The Black Corsair Award for adventure literature and was nominated for both an Anthony Award and an Edgar Award for his mystery writing.

He currently lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and would grill every meal if his wife would let him.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2540 KB
  • Print Length: 402 pages
  • Publisher: 47North (October 22, 2013)
  • Publication Date: October 22, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,216 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By nope on October 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
If you want page after page describing familial relationships and clothing, then this is not the fantasy for you. The first paragraph had me laughing, the first chapter had me hooked, and the first installment has me wanting more. It was a very fast paced read with all the subtlety of an 80s action film. Swords go through heads. Fowl language, shmowl language. This is pulp. This is action packed fantasy. This is Ink Mage.
Devoured the 2nd episode in no time at all. Looking forward to the next installment. Third installment done and still hooked. I just want to reiterate, this book is not one of your long winded, slow moving fantasies. You know the ones I'm talking about. The story moves quickly from scene to scene, and never do I find myself wondering when something will actually happen.
Finished the book and keeping with my 4 star review. Great, fun story. As others have said, the ending does feel a bit rushed and abrupt, but not bad. I do hope the book gets a thorough editing before it goes into print. I think the typos and sloppy proofreading is more publisher's (47North) fault than the author's.
Seriously hoping the sequel comes along in the near future. Come on, it's a law that Fantasy novels come in trilogies, minimum.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If someone put the Encyclopedia of Fantasy Tropes and Stereotypes into novel form and then had a stoned college student transcribe it for maximum typos, this is about what I would expect to see come out the other side. (For example, "solider" and "soldier" are both words, but not interchangeable. Also, you cannot ever, ever say "here" when you mean "her"... and so on. There is a reason proofreaders get paid for their work, and it's to keep people like you, Mr. Gischler, from looking like a chump.)

Horrible cliches aside (oh, how cute! The princess--I mean duchess--is falling for the stable boy. Who could have predicted that?!) A lot of the novel just doesn't make sense or display any amount of research. For example, a bodyguard who teaches his charge (who he's been protecting and training since she was born) rapier first, hand-to-hand last, and apparently never even THINKS that she might need more practical weapons training in something other than a dueling weapon until there is literally an army on her doorstep. One who also, apparently, can take on an entire squad of elite fighters single-handedly, but it too stupid to stop at any point after said battle to wrap a simple bandage so he doesn't bleed out and leave his charge completely unprotected and on her own in a snowy wilderness with enemies all around her. This would also explain why he fell for the Evil Steward's "maybe you should check the garrison" ruse instead of being at his charge's side when she and her father were meeting with the enemy.

Why is there a rapier on a wall display of hunting weapons? Why does a stableboy (HEAD stableboy!) show absolutely no emotion about killing a guy (except to whine about how in the act of COMMITTING MURDER he may have bruised his ribs)?
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Victor Gischler confirms my long-held suspicion that he can master ANY genre he writes! I find his first installment of this serial sci-fi fantasy novel to be unique, extremely witty, and ultimately provocative.

The premise alone is fascinating and undeniably original: creating a world where a Mage can imbue a warrior-woman with magical and mystical powers by, wait for it, inked tattoos... cool-ass ones at that! Each new tattoo strengthening her to become MORE than she is naturally, more magical than others could even suspect.

Gischler's uncanny knack for writing superb, smart dialogue shines through every scene, and his well-developed characters are fantastical yet the reader can relate to them 100% ...thus, it is completely consistent with his earlier works.

By the end, I was overwhelmingly sad to leave this ink-imbued world in which I felt right at home, finding myself aching to return to her, her world, her powers, her ink (of course), and to what her ultimate cost will be.

I cannot wait to read the continued story and its outcome in the next installment! Bravo and ❝mad props❞ to Victor Gischler for wholly immersing me in this new fantastical adventure and thoroughly engaging my mind, as he so consistently and easily does with ALL of his writing regardless of what genre he decides to tackle! Again, BRAVO indeed!!
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Format: Kindle Edition
So this book started out very strong. I was totally on board for the first hundred pages or so. A cold and detached area on the map under the rule of a distant king (reminded me of the North from Game of Thrones with her father being Ned Stark). I liked that she was stubborn and had a strong personality. When the city got attacked, the action sequences were interesting and exciting. But soon enough, the author completely lost me.

This book was full of cliches and overused fantasy tropes. Most events in the story were corny and completely unbelievable. I didn't care about the characters at all. I mean, how could I when all I knew about every single female character was their breast size? I'm not even joking. Each female character was introduced by her breasts. Her level of "bone-ability" determined her importance in the story.

As for the writing, there were crazy amounts of typos and mistakes. Usually this doesn't bother me too much, but this was a little extreme. The pacing seemed to go extremely fast at times to extremely slow. And the ending was very anti-climatic with no solid conclusion.

This book was not good. It started out promising and really let me down with it's degrading comments towards women and overused cliches and tropes. It was a waste of my time.
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