YRCA 2014 Review: Ruby Red

Yay! My first review for the new list! And I’m talking about Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier!

Gwen comes from a long line of women who carry a gene that allows them to travel through time. Gwen has lived a relatively normal life up until she’s sixteen because her cousin Charlotte, who was born on a special day, is supposed to be the one with the gene and their whole family is waiting with baited breath for her to have her first time-travel incident. Apparently, she will just randomly disappear for anywhere from minutes to hours into anytime in the past before coming back and doing it all again at some undetermined time. Charlotte has been trained for this her whole life, sacrificing a normal life so, of course, it turns out that Gwen was born a day earlier than everyone thought and that she has the gene instead. And she is completely unprepared. And of course, there is a boy who can also time-travel and there is a device that helps control the time-travel and there is mysterious secret society that possibly has an ulterior motive.

So, as I said in my last post, it was coincidence that I offered up Ruby Red to the teens in my Teen Book Club and that they picked it for the month that the new YRCA list came out and that it just happened to be on the list. What’s more awesome is that this also happened two years ago with The Hunchback Assignments.

I really liked Ruby Red.  Interestingly, I learned after reading it that it was translated from German, so that’s cool. The dialogue was fun and the concept of spontaneous time-travel was intriguing. I know for certain that this is not the first time that a book has represented time-travel this way. One really awesome book in particular comes to mind but I won’t name it because it would totally be a spoiler for that book but if you’ve read it, you’ll know what I’m talking about.  There were plenty of plot twists and mysteries that kept me interested. The only kind of odd thing for me was that it didn’t feel like a complete book, but rather, the first third of a book. The climax was not really climax-y and the romance was very early stages. In fact, most of the plot was Gwen learning about the world of the time-travellers and setting up future mysteries. Despite a prologue and epilogue, it felt like someone had taken a story and divided it up. Not that I really minded, though, because the story definitely kept me engaged and the way it ended had me wanting to know more. I actually put the next book on hold a couple of minutes after I finished it.

Will this book win the Senior Division? Um, well, Divergent is also in this category so… probably not. But, hey, you never know.

What I’m reading now: Inferno by Dan Brown, Going Postal audiobook by Terry Pratchett.


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