Thursday, July 14, 2011

RUBY RED by Kerstin Gier

Dude, I have determined that the next book I write is going to have the word "red" in the title. I read BLOOD RED ROAD after RUBY RED and adored them both.

Up today is RUBY RED. I cannot adequately explain how much I loved this book. I started reading it, and immediately got a Cornelia Funke vibe. So I flipped to the back to find out more about the author, and what do you know? Kerstin is from Germany too!

I think I need to go there to figure out how to write in such a compelling manner.

First, a little bit about RUBY RED: 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 take: This book has it all. Great writing, a compelling heroine, and a unique premise. It's time travel in a sea of YA novels where surprisingly time travel is strangely absent. In fact, I stumbled upon this book's existence while in New York.

My agent and I went to Books of Wonder, a children's bookstore on 18th Street. I fell in love instantly, of course. But the true gem was a girl named Kayla. She asked me if I needed help finding something, and I said I wanted a YA time travel novel.

She said she couldn't think of anything, we chatted, and she left. A few minutes later, she came back with a card with Ruby Red written on it. At the time, the book wasn't out yet. No problem; it's not like I don't have enough to read.

But when I got home, Kayla had emailed me, saying she had an ARC of Ruby Red, and would I like to borrow it?

Uh, yeah.

RUBY RED is a fantastic novel with complex characters. Gwyneth is done masterfully, with enough of a hint at romance for a kissing-fanatic like me. She worries about the right things. She thinks through the consequences.

And the time travel is refreshing. (See, I'm a sucker for things time-related. I'm a bit obsessed with time.) Intriguing, with just enough information given to keep the reader going. Kerstin Gier is a master-writer. I think I'll book my ticket to Germany now.

Readers who like Cornelia Funke (and who doesn't??) will like Ruby Red.

Are you interested in time travel? What have you read that is a bit off the beaten path, but incredibly well-done?




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23 comments:

Natalie Aguirre said...

I love Cornelia Funke so I'll definitely check out Ruby Red. Thanks for letting me know.

Tiffany Schmidt said...

I really enjoyed Ruby Read too -- and after reading on the back that the next two are already out in Germany, I went online and searched to see if there were English copies available ANYWHERE. Alas, we really do have to wait a whole year to find out what happens next.

...or learn to read German.

Miranda Hardy said...

I just got this book and can't wait to read it.

Kimberly Krey said...

Two with 'Red' in the title; that IS kinda crazy, right? The book sounds super cool. The last YA time travel I read was The Hourglass Door, which I enjoyed. Glad to hear there's a hint of romance in it; I too am a kiss-loving fool!

Susanne Winnacker said...

I have the German version on my shelf! Kerstin Gier is quite popular in Germany.

Leigh Ann said...

I cannot WAIT to read this. My WIP is also about a girl who finds out that she's a time Traveler. (I thought I was being original - womp womp.) Naturally she's also cruising around history with a hottie.

Can't wait to read Kristen Gier's, once this sucker goes in the drawer, or up for e-pub, for good.

Thanks Elana!

Donna K. Weaver said...

I love Cornelia's writing. Another book to add to my list of to reads. Thanks Elana!

Marsha Sigman said...

Hmmmm time travel...could that be the next vampire?lol

This sounds great! Definitely want to read.

Crystal said...

That sounds like a great one! Thanks for all the recommendations and reviews! I'll definitely add Ruby Red to my list!

Lydia Sharp said...

Thanks for the rec! This books sounds right up my alley. :D

beth said...

I have this book on my shelf RIGHT NOW. I think I'll read it next after this rec :)

Also: more time travel novels = Myra's HOURGLASS and Julie Cross's TEMPEST. BOTH are brilliant.

LTM said...

Very cool! Thanks for the heads up... and guess what? The MS I have on submission is titled Red~ ;p hopefully a good omen. <3

Nisa said...

I'm sold. It sounds fantastic!

Matthew MacNish said...

This is a different kind of cover. We likes it.

Pam Torres said...

Time Travel!! Whoo hoo! I love it and there are not very many books out there. Thanks!

The Golden Eagle said...

I really like time travel; I've come across very few books centered around it. Pathfinder by Orson Scott Card was one I enjoyed.

Thanks for the review!

Theresa Milstein said...

I like Time Travel. There was a little of it in Hourglass. Thanks for the review. I'm putting this on my long, long list. But near the top.

Theresa Milstein said...

I thought this cover looked familiar. I saw this at my local bookstore the last time I was there. Striking cover, so hard to forget.

Leslie Rose said...

I go weak at the knees for a good time travel yarn. I just finished REVOLUTION by Jennifer Donnelly. There was a super cool snap back in time segment.

LynNerd said...

I love time travel books (and movies) for all ages, MG through adult. This weekend I'll start A Tear in Time by Chris Peterson. It's about a doctor who takes an elevator and exits in a civil war hospital. The civil war doc is suspicious of the strange doctor, until he teaches him new medical techniques and they become friends. It covers some famous battles, and I'm excited to read it. Not sure if it has any romance, but that would be nice!

Ruby Read sounds like a great read, too. That's so cool that you got to read the ARC.

Jessie Humphries said...

Why is it called ruby red if her name is gwyneth? Just wondering...

Susanne Drazic said...

My question is the same as Jessie's. Why is it called Ruby Red if the young girl's name is Gwyneth? Perhaps if you told us, that would be a spoiler? I'll add this one to my TBR book list.

Elle Strauss said...

As you might know, I LOVE Time Travel. I've heard great things about this book. I was actually thinking earlier today how I'd like to read it. And I'm reading Blood Red Road right now! :0

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