16 year old Gwyneth Shepherd comes from a long line of time travellers, but luckily, her cousin is the one who carries the pesky gene that travels through the female line. Gwyneth is free to spend all her free time talking about boys, movies, and school with her best friend, without worrying about travelling back in time randomly.
But then Gwyneth discovers that it isn’t Charlotte who has the pesky gene, but her! Within a day of being transported to the past, Gwyneth now has to take lessons on fencing, comportment, and family genealogy, especially if she doesn’t want to blow her cover when she travels to the past.
But as she joins the super secret society of time travellers, which have existed throughout the ages, Gwyneth discovers that the people around her don’t always have the best of intentions, and may be spurred on by events- or people- who lived long ago. Add on top of it a handsome time travelling companion, and Gwyneth barely has enough time to finish her homework. What’s a girl to do?!
I absolutely LOVED this book! So much so that halfway through I put the second one Sapphire Blue on hold immediately, and was lucky enough to receive it the day after I finished this. If I could describe this book in one word, it would be: cute.
The concept of time travelling is obviously not that original, but Gier breathed a lot of fresh air into it, and I had a lot of fun following Gwyneth into the past and then back into the present. When she joins the Temple, which is a secret society which revolves around both the male and female time travellers through the ages, she is happy to discover that her life won’t be interrupted by random bouts of travelling to the past. Instead a fancy contraption can make it so that she can fulfill her daily time travelling quota easily.
When first reading the reviews about this book, I noticed that a lot of people complained about Gwyneth’s immaturity. She’s almost 17, but instead sounds like she’s 14 at times. I did notice this at time, but it didn’t ruin my enjoyment of the book. Yes, Gwyneth can be silly and whiny and slightly immature sounding at times, but I actually enjoyed reading about a girl who wasn’t overly emotional or dramatic all the time. She’s had a pretty normal upbringing so far, and so when she finds out that it isn’t her annoying cousin who can time travel, but her, she deals with it in the only way she knows how: by being silly.
Gwyneth’s relationships with her family and friends also made this an enjoyable read. Unlike so many other YA books out there, the plot didn’t center around her forbidden romance with Gideon, her male time travelling companion, but instead featured a whole host of interesting characters. This included her wacky family, her super-supportive best friend, who naturally believes everything she tells her, the extremely mysterious Adepts at the Temple, and also well-rounded Gideon, who she can’t help but fall for.
The romance wasn’t all-consuming or overly dramatic; Gwyneth doesn’t take well to Gideon’s bullying in the beginning, and lets him know exactly what she thinks of him. Gideon, himself, isn’t completely a typical YA hero either, and his conversations and interactions with Gwyneth just made me giggle and smile.
In fact, this whole book made me giggle and smile. The plot moved rather quickly, despite the fact that it only takes place over a few days, and there are new revelations that make you keep turning pages rather quickly. Granted, there isn’t a lot of emotional depth, or depth in general, but it’s a lot of fun, especially if you’re looking for something light and quick.
So for that: 4.5/5.
Thanks for reading,