Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier

Everyone thought Charlotte would be the time traveler in the family. Turns out everyone was wrong–Gwyneth included. Gwyneth thought seeing ghosts would be her only weird skill, but it looks like she’ll have one more to add to the list. Most of her family is unhappy about it and some of them even have the nerve to blame Gwyneth! Like Gwyneth wanted this to happen to her! Charlotte’s the one who’s had a lifetime of training–Gwyneth would gladly give her the time travelling gene even if she is starting to enjoy all of the time she’s spending with her companion, Gideon.
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I’ve gotten a little tired of the “my family has a generations old secret, but no one will tell me what it is because I’m not involved/not of age yet” trope. Luckily, this book isn’t exactly like that! Gwyneth had received some training/information about the family secret because she’s supposed to help Charlotte if she starts time travelling at school. So it’s not like this is completely new for Gwyneth even if she doesn’t know everything. I was annoyed that people seemed so resistant to give her additional information though. I mean, she’s obviously the one who can time travel–I feel that it would behoove everyone to get her up to speed as soon as possible.

The characters in general were just alright. Gwyneth seemed a little too…weak, frivolous, immature, etc. Not in an unbearable way, but more in a “come on, is this really how teenage girls act?” way. Aunt Glenda seemed pretty ridiculous to me and Charlotte seemed one-note and flat in comparison. I’m not sure how I feel about Gideon and his family yet, but I do like Gwyneth’s mom and appreciated that Lady Arista seemed to be taking things in stride. I almost expected her to freak out like Glenda did, but she’s actually taking things very calmly. Lastly, I think Lesley is awesome. Basically the best friend a character could ever have.

As far as the plot goes, time travelling is enough for me and I don’t like that there are some other magical elements to it. I’m also not sure what to think about the Gideon/Gwyneth relationship especially since Gideon seemed pretty in to Charlotte at first. Overall, I didn’t feel like much happened in this book. It almost seems like it exists solely to set up the rest of the series. That being said, I thought the book was enjoyable, and I couldn’t even tell that it was originally written in another language.

Overall Rating: 4
Language: None
Violence: Moderate
Sexual Content: None
Smoking/Drinking: None

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