Title: Ruby Red
Author: Kerstin Gier
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co., 2011
Translator: Anthea Bell
Gwyneth is in a fine mess. Her perfect, know-it-all cousin Charlotte was supposed to have the time travel gene in her family and has been preparing for time travel since childhood. But as luck would have it, turns out some secrets are revealed when Gwyneth is the one to jump back in time, completely unexpectedly, instead. Sure, she could talk to ghosts, but time travel? So with no training whatsoever and only a quick run-down of what's going on and what their mission is, Gwyneth is thrust into the role of the ruby, last of the time travelers and the one to complete the circle. But is everything what the Guardians say true? Why did her cousin Lucy and Paul de Villiers run off 16 years earlier? Who can she trust?
To be honest, I was not expecting much from Ruby Red when I picked it up. I thought it would be a fun, light read, but I underestimated it. Not only is the text funny, engaging and full of British slang (win), it is a fast-paced adventure bundled up in mysteries. I loved Gwyneth's reactions to pretty much everything. She's funny, and she has a backbone, willing to listen to others when no one else will. She doesn't really take anything lying down, which is good since everyone around her is trying to control what she does.
Anthea Bell, the translator, does a wonderful job. I couldn't tell it was translated at all—it's like it was written in English by a Brit, the language is so spot-on.
Unfortunately I'm not a huge fan of the cover. It's pretty boring, and doesn't really reflect the spunkiness of the main character or the plot very well. It's very plain.
I'm very intrigued by where this is going. I certainly will want to read the sequels, the next of which is Sapphire Blue, out next spring.
Disclosure: This book was sent to me by Zeitghost Media in exchange for an honest review.