Sadie Hawkins Sunday Review #36: Ruby Red

Sadie Hawkins Sunday Review #36: Ruby RedRuby Red by Kerstin Gier
Series: Ruby Red Trilogy #1
Published by Henry Holt BFYR on May 10, 2011
Genres: Fantasy, Historical, Romance, Time Travel
Pages: 322
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library
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three-half-stars

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.

Recommended by: Debby (Snuggly Oranges)

Ruby Red has been on my to-read list for simply ages, and, in an effort to force myself to make time, I requested the final book in the trilogy for review, even though I know that’s always a highly stressful thing to do. Anyway, Debby was super helpful by forcing me to read it immediately. I am so glad that I ended up really liking this one, since I have two more to read. Ruby Red is a really fast-paced, light, humorous read and I was flipping pages like a mad woman to find out what would happen next.

Generally, time travel stories make me crazy, because they end up being super complex or just off the wall impossible with contradictions. With Ruby Red, though, Gier handles everything in a way I deem acceptable. The time travel stuff is really fun and not intensely scientific. This definitely falls more on the fantasy end of the spectrum than science fiction.

Like several people in her lineage, Gwyneth discovers that she has the time traveling gene, much to the disappointment of her aunt and cousin, who were convinced Charlotte had it. Poor Charlotte! Gwyneth reads a bit young and naive, but it worked. She feels like a real teenager, youthful and a bit snarky. I love the way she’s always making fun of the people bossing around in her head. I look forward to watching her grow as the series progresses.

The prologue and epilogue are really interesting, because they’re an unnamed couple that can time travel. The guy is unnamed and he calls the girl Princess. Is it Gwyneth and Gabriel grown up? Another set of time travelers? My curiosity runs rampant. Usually I find such framing devices annoying and pointless, but this one is a delight.

Then there’s this romance that promises to be super flaily down the road, since it starts with Gwyneth witnessing another version of herself kissing Gideon. Later, though, they meet and he’s all “she’s not handsome enough to tempt me.” Okay, fine, he didn’t say THAT, but the spirit’s the same. Obviously, these two crazy kids are meant to be, but I didn’t quite get the swoony feelings yet, but I am definitely keeping an eye open for when they dress in those costumes from that first kissy scene.

Ruby Red was seriously a lot of fun and I don’t have any real complaints, but I don’t feel like I’ve gotten enough yet. I need more world building, more feelings, more intensity and more character development. For now, this is a super cute, page-turningly fun read, but I’m hoping for a bit more depth in the next two books.

Favorite Quote:

“Oh, it is not particularly difficult to beguile women and subdue them to your will, my dear sir. They’re all the same. If my mind were not on higher things, I would long ago have written a manual for gentlemen, advising them on the right way to handle women.”
I bet he would. I could think of a good title for it straight off. Successful Strangulation, or How to Talk a Woman to Death


Up Next:

Sapphire Blue - Kerstin Gier

Next week, I’ll be working through the rest of the trilogy. Expect a review for Sapphire Blue at midnight next Sunday. Hopefully I’ll also get Emerald Green read too, but I’ve got a busy reading schedule, so we’ll see about that.

Want to tell me what to read? Either tweet me the book title and author or fill out the following form:

10 responses to “Sadie Hawkins Sunday Review #36: Ruby Red”

  1. roro says:

    This trilogy has beeen on my wish lust haha. Tnx 4the review

  2. Morgan says:

    Ooh I’m glad this was a fun one! I love time travel books; I got it as a bargain book and have to admit… half of the reason I picked it up was the paperback cover haha. Beautiful dress and London background? Yes please!

  3. I totallyyyyyyyyyyy agree that I loved this book but there just WASN’T ENOUGH OF IT. Like, it was way too short. And Sapphire Blue was sadly the same. I really feel like this trilogy should have been one book instead of three, because even then it wouldn’t be too long for a YA book. But yeah. I’m jealous you will know how the story ends before me ;_____________;

    And YES to Gwen being young and naive but it WORKING and YES YES to the romance hihihihihi

    (Also I can’t get over the Gwyneth thing, her name is freaking Gwendolyn -.-)

    WHEN YOU FINISH READING THE SERIES I’m going to force you to watch the movie and YOU WILL HAVE ALL THE FLAILS ALL OF THEM and I will enjoy watching you suffer xD asdfjkl;
    Debby (Snuggly Oranges) recently posted…Book Review: Coraline by Neil GaimanMy Profile

  4. Shelly says:

    I’ve heard so many great things about this series so I’m happy to see you enjoyed it! I definitely need to read it too, I feel so behind in so many books. I can’t wait to see your opinion of the next one. Great review 🙂
    Shelly recently posted…Weekly Recap: September 23rd to 29thMy Profile

  5. Kayla Beck says:

    I have the first two books at the house and Emerald Green preordered, but I keep forgetting to read them when I have time! Gah! Maybe I’ll push for it over the holidays, which I’m keeping clear for MY reads. 😀
    Kayla Beck recently posted…Review: The Bone Season by Samantha ShannonMy Profile

  6. Alessandra says:

    I can’t understand why they changed the name from Gwendolyn to Gwyneth. Bah. After all, the book in set in England, even if the original is in German. I love the covers for the US edition; they’re super pretty. The Italian covers only have girls in pretty dresses, which is boring.

    Also – the couple from the prologue and the epilogue is not Gwen and Gideon.

    I saw the movie; it was fun and sweet, even though they followed the book only up to a certain point, then the plot changes.
    Alessandra recently posted…Nerd Blast: Eternal Starling by Angela CorbettMy Profile

  7. DanaSquare says:

    I love light fun exciting reads definitely what I am looking for in books!

  8. This book has been on my TBR for so long, too! I know my library has the books and that really should motivate me to read them, but for some reason I just haven’t gotten around to it. Hearing that they’re more on the lighter side and very cute makes me want to even more though, especially because those are kind of the books I’m in the mood for – and really the only books I have the patience for – during this whole college application process. Great review, as usual! 🙂
    Stephanie @ The Novlist recently posted…Cover Reveal: The One by Kiera CassMy Profile

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