Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Review: Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier

Title: Ruby Red
Series: Edelstein Trilogy #1
Author: Kerstin Gier
Available: Now
Reading Level: YA
Genre: Fantasy/Time-travel

Description from Goodreads:

Gwyneth Shepherd's sophisticated, beautiful cousin Charlotte has been prepared her entire life for traveling through time. But unexpectedly, it is Gwyneth, who in the middle of class takes a sudden spin to a different era!

Gwyneth must now unearth the mystery of why her mother would lie about her birth date to ward off suspicion about her ability, brush up on her history, and work with Gideon--the time traveler from a similarly gifted family that passes the gene through its male line, and whose presence becomes, in time, less insufferable and more essential. Together, Gwyneth and Gideon journey through time to discover who, in the 18th century and in contemporary London, they can trust.

My thoughts:

Ruby Red is the first translated novel I have ever read. I was a little nervous starting it, but after just a few chapters I found I had no reason to be. I loved the premise. Time travel is so cool, but I have found books that touch on this topic rarely work for me. Ruby Red definitely worked. Some of the dialogue did fall a bit flat, and I’ll assume this is a result of being translated from another language. Even with this flaw I still found Ruby Red thoroughly engaging.

Main character Gwyneth was quite awkward at times, and I couldn't help but to like her even more because of it. It was difficult not to feel pity for her especially when scenes involved her interacting with her "perfect" cousin, Charlotte or aunt (Charlotte’s mother). It didn't help that Gwyneth had spent most of her life excluded from the mysterious society her family is involved with because they thought Charlotte had inherited the gene required for time travel. Imagine the surprise when it turns out Gwyneth is actually the one who is able to do it. This is a family with some serious skeletons in their closets, residual anger over past events, and numerous secrets that are just begging to be unveiled. 

I enjoyed experiencing multiple time periods over the course of Ruby Red. It was also entertaining to discover how Gwyneth adapted to the situations she was thrown into and the people she met. A few scenes were actually quite humorous and there was also an apt amount of mystery and suspense. I did find the family tree somewhat confusing. Hopefully who is related to who will become more clear as I continue the trilogy.

Ruby Red is a solid read that I had difficulty putting down and hated to see end. I found myself thinking about it long after I finished reading. I wish I could read German, because I imagine this book is even better in its native tongue. It's a shame I didn’t pick up more of the language during the five years I lived there. If I had you better believe I’d have the next book in my hands right now. Needless to say I can't wait for the release of the next book in this trilogy. 

My Rating: