Girl About Time Ruby Red | Kerstin Gier

Apparently this is a German trilogy recently translated into English…I couldn’t tell at all, especially as most of it was set in London.

The story raced along smoothly, with lots of action and funny dialogue. I found the time travel parts more interesting than the time spent at school. But the early school scenes obviously helped introduce the characters and established their relationships with each other.

I’m not quite sure what age group this book is aimed for.

The writing is quite light and easy to read so that any mature 11+ reader could manage it. However all the kids are in the mid teens with some light romance thrown in so that older teens could also enjoy this story.
I’ve also noticed a lot of (good) reviews on YA blogs, so this trilogy could be described as a great all ages read.

If you’re a fan of the Ivory Tower then I think you’ll love this too. It has a similar mix of mystery, historical fiction, adventure and romance.

I’m certainly looking forward to the next 2 books, Sapphire Blue and Emerald Green.

After writing the above, I spent some time checking out the covers from other countries – they have all been of a consistently high standard. But it is curious to note how they also reflect each countries opinion on what age group is reading this type of book.

The Australian cover with the younger girl featured on it, echoes my indecision about which age group this is written for. Whereas the US cover with its sumptuous ruby gown & very mature looking young woman is definitely YA material. However my particular favourite is the fairytale styled cover from Germany. First published in 2009; English translation 2012. The translator is Anthea Bell.

Sixteen-year-old Gwen lives with her extended – and rather eccentric – family in an exclusive London neighborhood. In spite of her ancestors’ 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. It comes as an unwelcome surprise 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…

4 thoughts on “Girl About Time Ruby Red | Kerstin Gier

  1. I loved the character of Gwen. Told in first person narration, I really enjoyed her voice. She thinks, talks and acts like your normal sixteen year old. Often in young adult fiction we get the cynical, broody, weight-of-the-world-on-my-shoulders main characters but not Gwen. She was happy and silly as teens her age should be but without being dumb. I loved her movie references throughout the book. I found her character very refreshing. Besides Gwen, there were a lot of great secondary characters like her friend Lesley (she is the kind of friend you want by your side), Gideon (the love interest who was the right mix of nice guy-ness and obnoxiousness), the present day Guardians especially Madame Rossini (who dresses Gwen and Gideon in stylish period-appropriate clothes when they time travel) and the mysterious Paul and Lucy (they intrigue me and I can't wait to read more about them).I'm not usually a fan of time-traveling stories but I am a fan of secret societies and piecing a mystery as secrets and information are revealed. The plot was exciting and I really liked that we learn about the secret world of the Guardians and their mission and the intricacies of time traveling along with Gwen. The time-traveling concept here it was very well done as well and believable. It was just a really fun book to read, perfect for light summer reading. It ends in a satisfying cliffhanger and I cannot wait to read the next book in the series, Sapphire Blue.

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