Monday, June 27, 2011

Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier

Grade: Low A


Sixteen-year-old Gwen lives with her extended--and rather eccentric--family in an exclusive London neighborhood. In spite of her ancestor's peculiar history, she's had a relatively normal life so far. The time-traveling gene that runs like a secret thread through the female half of the family is supposed to have skipped over Gwen, so she hasn't been introduced to "the mysteries," and can spend her time hanging out with her best friend, Lesley, watching movies and talking about boys. It comes as an unwelcoming surprise then when she starts taking sudden, uncontrolled leaps into the past.

She's totally unprepared for time travel, not to mention all that comes with it: fancy clothes, archaic manners, a mysterious secret society, and Gideon, her time-traveling counterpart. He's obnoxious, a know-it-all, and possibly the best-looking guy she's seen in any century...


Character Development: 7/10
Originality: 7/10
Overall Enjoyment: 8/10
Ending: 7/10
Voice: 8/10
Plot: 7/10
Setting: 9/10
Total Score: 53/70

Obtained: Free finished copy provided by publisher (Henry Holt)

Age Appropriate? PG

Cursing: Some, very limited.
Alcohol, Drugs, etc: None.
Sexual Content: None.
Disturbing Images/Violence: Some murder and violence.


All things considered, this book was fairly charming. It wasn't nearly as juvenile as the trailer made it seem, but nor was it a masterpiece. Gwen is mildly annoying at times, but has her moments of being quite cool. Gideon is, well...a guy, and there is absolutely nothing disguising the fact that he's "the One". But the concept of the magic is quite interesting, and I am relieved that this book is a trilogy, because there's simply too much intrigue to fit into one book of this length.

Was it worth the read? Definitely. The story is fast-paced but easy to follow, and there are some truly lovable characters you meet along the way. Gier also managed to keep the reader as ignorant as Gwen as far as who to trust, with no dramatically ironic clues whatsoever, a trait of the book that keeps it interesting and unpredictable. I honestly have no idea where the next two books are going, but I will certainly look forward to finding out!


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