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The Black Tattoo

3.48  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,382 Ratings  ·  278 Reviews
Jack's best friend, Charlie, is in serious trouble, possessed by an ancient demon called the Scourge who plans to use Charlie to bring about its evil ends-which, unfortunately, involve the destruction of the entire universe. Now Jack and the butt-kicking, sword-wielding Esme must contend with floating sharks, intelligent jelly, oversized centipedes, gladiator pits, and vom ...more
ebook, 528 pages
Published January 10th 2008 by Razorbill (first published January 1st 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Tapestrymlp
Jack's best friend Charlie has been sucked into a demon-fighting secret brotherhood and Jack's just along for the ride. Charlie suddenly has super-powers and an attitude to match, while Jack is just the same 14-year-old boy he was yesterday. As the brotherhood begins to disintegrate, a powerful demon named the scourge begins to take over and Jack and Charlie are forced to venture into Hell.

The book began with promise but quickly nose-dived after that. The main bad-guy, The Scourge, (sound's like
...more
Jessica
Aug 05, 2008 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: youngadult
Really different. Different from what I was expecting, and different from anything I've read. Wow. It's getting a lot of negative reviews, many of them whining that the protagonist is a self-centered jerk. Um, good morning, readers! That wasn't the protagonist.

This is the story of a sidekick who realizes it's up to him to save the world. This is the story of a hero, trained all her life for one specific task, and how she deals with her world when it all falls apart around her. This is also, mar
...more
Lowed
Dec 03, 2010 Lowed rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
With all the werewolves and vampire books flooding the bookstores nowadays, I guess YA lit is really going down to hell (pardon my language). I know there are still YA lit with good quality and are worth the effort, but it's becoming harder to come by.

Luckily we do not have any Filipino authors who jumped into the bandwagon in creating "paranormal romance". Else we would be reading TIKBALANGS (humanoid in form but with head and feet of a horse), MANANANGGALS (the old, beautiful woman capable of
...more
Rachel
There will be readers who will enjoy this energetic, enthusiastically written book, but I am not among that company. This young adult novel reads like the half conscious fantasy of a teenage science fiction-comics-video game fan, complete with gladitorial battles, emotionally agonized women with superhuman fighting skills, old, powerful swords, immature tyrants, legacies from dying mentors, terrible tapeworms, and the fate of the world hanging in balance. And, of course, a demon made tattoo magi ...more
Lolly's Library (Dork Kettle)
First off, I'd like to break down my rating: I give the book 4 stars for its creative concept, but only 2 stars for execution, which averages out to that 3 stars. Okay, I feel better now.

From what I can gather, despite the book's unusual plot, this is basically a coming-of-age book, concerning teenage growing pains (mental and physical) and the point at which one learns to take responsibility for one's choices. The story essentially centers around two friends, Jack and Charlie, who seem to be yo
...more
Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!*
I had somewhat high expectations for this book that … well, it didn't reach. The plot sounded intriguing to me, and I thought the first few chapters were great. I mean, Hell, a powerful demon on the loose, what could be more exciting than that? Unfortunately, this book dragged out for far to long, to the point where I just wanted it to end. Turned out this book was trying a little too hard to be funny rather than exciting. Don't get me wrong, I love some dark humor, but I felt like the constant ...more
Kavita Ramesh
I desperately wanted to like this book. It sounds like an interesting premise and the universe the author builds sounds promising. But the plot loses steam midway and meanders badly. Neither is the conclusion very interesting. The entire book could have used a bit of trimming.
Alisa
Sep 07, 2008 Alisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So fun, so readable, and sort of cinematic at times...I don't know why, but it just seemed that way to me, but in a good, effective way.
Krista, Ambassador of Shimmy
To be fair, this review is for the audio version. John Lee, the narrator performed beautifully, giving a unique voice and life to each character. I'm not sure I would have the same affinity for the book had I elected to read in a traditional manner.

Sam Enthoven packs a bit of everything into this novel and, for me, it presented fresh idea, after fresh idea, after fresh idea. It tips the concepts of hell and humanity on their heads and casts daemons as gladiators.

The story also brings together co
...more
Sharon Tyler
Black Tattoo by Sam Enthoven is a young adult novel that is about friendship, dreams, life and finding ones true goals and worth in the context of the possible end of the world. This is a fast-paced novel, high in action and with a very interesting premise. However, the execution of the idea and the characterization of the major players seemed to be a little lacking.

Black Tattoo is a fantasy novel is a “teens need to save the universe’ story, with the premise being that a demon is released from
...more
Kimberly Bower (gladeslibrarian)
You could say that The Black Tattoo is another of the countless good vs. evil tales where a trio of characters battle to save planet Earth from the forces of darkness. You could say that. Until you read this book.

The author's cast of characters could be any of the teenagers attending your nearby school. Charlie, the misfit, is bored with school, doesn't do homework, can't get a girlfriend, hates his life and desperately wants to be like his ultra-cool, good-looking, smart and ever-popular frien
...more
Sarah
Mar 09, 2009 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I first picked up this book because I was (as always) sucked in by John Jude Palencar's cover art. I didn't begin reading it immediately but once I started, I couldn't stop and ended up finishing it within a day.

Enthoven creates his own quirky world and compliments it with a quirky and humorous plot line that takes many surprising twists and turns. The book follows the much used teenage-boy-thinks-he's-nothing-special-and-ends-up-saving-the-world routine but still manages to remain its own stor
...more
Emily
Dec 15, 2008 Emily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Looking over the other reviews for this book, I can identify with both sides. Part of me really wants to like this book and there are parts of the book that are really likeable. The other part of me was ssooooo bored with the whole thing. The characters were poorly developed. Who was Jack? Why would he follow his best friend to Hell? What about Esme? Why should any reader care about someone she knows nothing about? The plot dragged on and on - 500+ pages. Really? But then there were the Chinj wh ...more
Steven
Oct 10, 2009 Steven rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sam Enthoven has written a fun, magical adventure in The Black Tattoo. It seems original in its plot twists and turns while at the same time being very derivative. Jack is the most interesting character in his Sam from The Lord of the Rings way.

The story as a whole is a save-the-universe adventure along with some interesting philosophy and theology all wrapped up in lots of action. There are often three sides to the same plot line going. At times it is slightly past Enthoven’s capacity. There is
...more
Rebecca
I was really looking forward to this book. I had read Crawlers by this author earlier in the year and it was great, so much better than I expected and highly enjoyable. So, when I found this book by the same author I had high hopes for another good book.

What a disappointment! I quit at page 141 at the end of section 1 as I just could not bring myself to read anymore! This was just bad, boring and so overly long! The thought of another 300 pages of this was so not good.

If I had read this first I
...more
Chappell
Nov 18, 2015 Chappell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves:
BLACK TATTOO by Sam Enthoven; penguin; pub and copyrighted. 2006

"LONDON. The west end. A little after for n the morning. At the base of the skyscraper known as center point tower, in the dark ness at the end of dank concrete walkway, something stirred. the shadows there began to ripple and coalesce." In the begging of this book gets your attention within the first couple sentences; these few pages shows you a conflict between a girl and a demon. That conflict showed you a lot of how the people
...more
Conan Tigard
Nov 13, 2015 Conan Tigard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Black Tattoo is an interesting story that mixes fantasy with demons from Hell. The Scourge is in the form of a tattoo that Charlie wears and it manipulates him to no end. Charlie, of course, has no idea this is happening. He is just a pawn of the Scourge, who only wants back the power it once held.

Charlie's friend, Jack, was my favorite character. I really could empathize with him as he struggles to save his best friend, who isn't the nice guy he used to be. Esme, on the other hand, is a ver
...more
Sleepless
Apr 25, 2015 Sleepless rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
More like 3.5 but I'll round it up.

I liked the idea behind this book. I liked how the sidekick suddenly is forced to step up. I also enjoyed the humor in this book.

The beginning was so slow though, I nearly gave up on it. I opened this book a year and a bit ago, read a few pages, got bored, and stopped reading. Yesterday I decided to give it another shot. It's worth reading past that boring beginning.

I loved Esme. She was so badass and cool. I was cheering for her so much. I liked how low key
...more
Jo-Jo
There really isn't much I can say about this book. I liked it okay, but it was far from my favorite. A boy named Jack and his friend Charlie inexplicably run into a man named Nick while walking down the street one night. Nick then takes them to introduce them to a girl named Esme and a man named Raymond, who are part of a secret and ancient order of Brotherhood who is sworn to keep a demon named "The Scourge" locked up for eternity in order to protect the universe. Only problem is, The Scourge h ...more
Deborah Ideiosepius
What to say, what to say...?

I didn't hate this book, though I was quite disappointed in it. A decent part of that disappointment was probably to do with the fact that I didn't twig to the fact that it is a 'young adult' book until fairly far in. While I read YA quite often and enjoy them, they are not the same as adult books and you need to log in and check up to figure out that this is 'not-quite-adult"reading.

Despite the many good concepts in this book it really does not cut it as a total pack
...more
Agitated_alphabet
Jan 09, 2014 Agitated_alphabet rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
Shelves: stay-away
I happened upon this book back in 2008 while stuck in a mountain timeshare with my then 79 year-old grandfather, 74 year-old grandmother, mother, and older sister. My grandfather's only interest was in playing golf and watching the stock market on TV, my grandmother and mother contented themselves with investigating attractions and potential activities, and my older sister had commandeered the laptop we brought with us. Needless to say, I was bored out of my mind. When my mother agreed to buy me ...more
Sharon
Mar 03, 2014 Sharon rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is like looking at the framework of a house. It's kind of boring, it's kind of ugly and it's just there. It's also a bit pretentious and the way the protag saves the day is just kind of eyerolling and I've seen it.

I feel this could have been an interesting story if it were better developed, if characters were more complex and had natural voices and aspirations--especially the kids. If there wasn't so much explaining the thing that is going on, grandstanding, and villain speeches, it w
...more
Shawnee Bowlin
Jan 14, 2014 Shawnee Bowlin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sam Enthoven kept me enthralled with 'The Black Tattoo'. It was interesting from start to finish and even made me seriously think about hell and Heaven, good and bad, earth and whatever exists outside of it. I was impressed with his writing style and wanted more when I was done with the book!
Charlie was perfect for his role in the story. I was enchanted by Esme, rooting for Jack, confused by the Scourge, and sad about Raymond. The characters were lively, and I'm only naming a few who kept me re
...more
Yesenia
This was a nice short read for me, only stopping because I had to go to work. In reality I think this story deserves 3.5 stars.
The story was nice, so was the world building. The idea of hell, demons and different planets and gods was interesting. Yet, I felt like the friendship between Jack and Charlie was not very convincing to me. Not enough for me to belive that Jack would willingly go to hell for his 'hotheaded, arrogant, bossy' friend. I feel like I'm missing more story, more information a
...more
Rorie Pagnozzi
This book was really unique, and though the writing seemed to drag on and on with details and more details and little showing the unique perspectives and creatures and world in which the author created were what kept it going for me. I had trouble relating to the main characters and more often than not wished I didn't have to read Esme's side of the story. She had no emotions to attach myself to, and quite finely a perfect life. The man who raised her and she'd known to be her dad the whole time ...more
Alvina
Judul : The Black Tattoo
Penulis : Sam Enthoven
Penerjemah : Lulu Fitri Rahman
Editor : Heni Setiani
Penerbit : LiniKata
Cetakan Pertama : Februari 2011
Tebal : 526 Halaman, HardCover

Awas, hati-hati ketika Anda tidak sengaja bertabrakan dengan seseorang yang tidak Anda kenal. Jack Farrell dan Charlie Farnsworth akhirnya harus berhadapan dengan Sang Laknat, Iblis yang terusir dari neraka karena awalnya bertabrakan dengan seorang laki-laki misterius yang diketahui bernama Nick.

Nick rupanya sedang menca
...more
Alex Matte
Nov 15, 2009 Alex Matte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book would definitely be classified as fantasy as one of the main characters finds out that he himself has magical powers. What he doesn’t know is that he is not the one with these powers. That what started out as a blessing, would very soon become a strong curse. The reason why I chose to read this book was, and I’m not going to lie, the title and cover of the book intrigued me. When a teenage boy sees a book with the title “The Black Tattoo” and a guy with a cool looking tattoo on the co ...more
Ryan
Oct 05, 2015 Ryan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I made it to the end of the second book before giving up. I like a lot of the elements of this and wish I'd liked the result more. A group formed for the sole purpose of containing a demon was betrayed and now the demon is out and taking the form of a telltale black tattoo on whoever he possesses? And said demon talks someone into letting him continue possessing them all with a faintly foreboding air that he's playing nicely now and will probably enjoy disposing of said vessel later? Sounds like ...more
Katie
Oct 16, 2010 Katie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While this is certainly not the worst YA fantasy novel I've ever read, it also wasn't my favorite. Although the pacing was good, the twists weren't too hard to see coming. The plot was pretty standard: boy inherits magic abilities, boy must decide to use his powers for good or evil, etc., etc. Really not much more to it than that.

I will give Enthoven some credit, though: one notable aspect of this novel that I enjoyed is that, for the first third of the novel or so, the action happens to a chara
...more
Rute Canhoto
CRÍTICA
Terminei a leitura deste livro a 21 de agosto de 2012. Dou-lhe três estrelas.
Comprei este livro numa promoção, principalmente porque li a sinopse e julguei que talvez me ajudasse na escrita de uma parte em concreto do meu livro, a qual ainda não quero revelar. No entanto, a história acabou por ser muito diferente do que esperava.
A ideia é engraçada, contudo não é o meu género preferido. Lê-se bem e tem muita ação, mas para quem gosta de um bocadinho romance, é melhor esquecê-lo, porque aq
...more
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What's The Name o...: The scourge, hell is on a dragons back- fantasy [s] 4 26 Jan 08, 2014 09:28PM  
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25551
My name is Sam Enthoven. I live in London, England, and I write fantastical action thrillers for 11-15 year-olds. If you're reading this, you've reached the 'portal page' of my sinister, ever-evolving internet empire – bwah-ha, bwah-HA-HA-HA! Er, sorry.

With his rollicking 2006 debut THE BLACK TATTOO Sam Enthoven fulfilled his dream to become an internationally published author of fantastical actio
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“Ooh, a plan," echoed Jack, with utter cotempt. "Wellhooray for that.” 9 likes
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