publisher: Henry Holt & Co
released: May 10, 2011
hardcover, 324 pages
intended audience: Young adult
source: from publisher for honest review
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.
Review: I really ended up enjoying this one, although it took a few chapters for me to really settle into it. The story is fantastic, the twists are good, historical fashion galore (which I completely loved) and the pacing of the relationship that grew between Gwyneth and Gideon was perfect. I often wondered if they would ever even become friends!
The few hitches here are these: the dialogue style took a little getting used to. At times, it seems a little awkward, seemed to run on---kind of like when you're watching subtitles in a foreign movie and the dialogue doesn't quite flow right in english. I was willing to overlook this, though. Once I got into the story, and kept in mind that it was, in fact, translated from German, it wasn't distracting. Secondly, there were some parts where Gwen and her friend, Lesley, seemed younger than their seventeen years of age. That may have been in part, because of the dialogue as well.
Other than that, this was really fun read! Most of the characters are complex and interesting. It was easy to feel for Gwen, being thrust into this uncontrollable situation with no warning or training, all the training having been wasted on her spoiled, self-entitled cousin, Charlotte, secrets coming out the woodwork, and blame being thrown on her shoulders from her cruel aunt. The best friend, Lesley was smart and resourceful and a rock for Gwen to lean on. I loved Mr. George and the seamstress, Madam Rossini (she was brilliant and I wish there had been drawings of the wonderful fashions she was creating!). I hope there are no surprising twists further on the make a bad guy of Mr. George, he is such a sweet man---I think it would break my heart. :) I can't wait for the next books to hear more about Lucy and Paul's part in the story.
The ending is a bit torturous...extreme cliffhanger warning!! The very last pages included the beginning of the next book, which helped a bit, but still. Pretty abrupt and left me dying for more. Sapphire Blue comes out Spring 2012!!
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