Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Review: Sapphire Blue - Kerstin Gier

Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier
Series: Ruby Red Trilogy #2
Genre: YA, time travel, romance
Published on October 30, 2012
Published by Henry Holt
Pages: 362
Read From: 11.7.12 - 11.11.12

Gwen's life has been a roller coaster since she discovered she was the Ruby, the final member of the time-traveling Circle of Twelve. When not searching through history for the other time travelers and asking for a bit of their blood (gross!), she's been trying to figure out what all the mysteries and prophecies surrounding the Circle really mean. 
It's not easy when a secret society, a dangerous Count, and her own time-traveling partner, Gideon, are determined to keep her from the truth. Especially since Gwen can't decide whether Gideon really believes she's a traitor to the Circle or might actually be on her side - and creeping into her heart.


Cover Blurb: Yes or No? Yes. The “character impersonator” is easy to ignore, and anyway, you can’t see her face - not really. I love the color and the silver filigree. So pretty!

Characters: Gwen, the protagonist, still remains a pretty good character. Her sense of humor is funny, she doesn’t have The Attitude, and she has an appreciation for historical dress, which almost makes up for her lack of interest in actual history, literature, social graces, and pastimes. Though I really must beg the question of why does the snotty girl have to be the historically-savvy one? I forgot how horrible Gwen’s aunts and her cousin Charlotte are; they’re still immensely fun to hate, especially Charlotte. My opinion of Gideon hasn’t changed all that much: his frustration is with the whole situation rather than with Gwen herself. However, Gideon’s mood swings do get old very quickly, and I began to understand Gwen’s irritation more. I was sorry that James the ghost wasn’t in this one more - I really like him, - but Xemerius the gargoyle is equally acceptable, and downright adorable.

The Romance: The love triangle between Charlotte, Gideon, and Gwen is getting old. He needs to make up his mind already, and considering what Charlotte is like, it shouldn’t be all that difficult of a decision. I am tired of both Gwen and Gideon not communicating clearly to each other about their feelings. One minute Gideon is making out with Gwen, and the next he’s Mr. Ice, and Gwen just pretends that she doesn’t care, but then explodes at him in the next moment.

Plot: Considering the book’s title, I figured it would have more to do with Lucy, but she’s hardly in it at all. Essentially what happens is: Gideon and Gwen fight, the Order continues to keep secrets from Gwen, Gwen travels back in time several times to keep herself from phasing uncontrollably, meets her grandfather when he was younger, has a couple of unhelpful discussions with him, more questions arise and none are answered, Gideon and Gwen fight some more, Gwen goes back in time to a soiree, where she gets stone drunk and sings a song from Cats, and no one reacts, and then Gwen has a discussion with the obviously-evil Count that leaves her hating Gideon, even though she won’t give him a chance to explain. Let’s go back to the soiree for a moment. This is supposed to be big moment in the story - it’s hugely important, and Gwen must not mess it up. About as soon as she gets there, Gwen gets herself drunk, and almost ruins everything. I don’t really know what the whole point behind this episode was. If it was an attempt at humor, it fell completely flat, and I started to totally agree with all of the members of the Order who thought Gwen was incompetent. She certainly doesn’t do herself favors. Being the second book in a trilogy, Sapphire Blue ought to have answered a lot more questions than it did, and a lot more ought to have happened. But it didn’t, and that left me feeling pretty disappointed.

Believability: Apart from the fact that no one reacted to Gwen singing a song from Cats in an era long before such music existed, nothing.

Writing Style: The Author’s style is very modern, but considering this is a modern-based story, it works perfectly well. She has a gift for humor and characters, and her dialogue has improved. In Ruby Red, I complained about some of the historic dialogue sounding too much like a swashbuckling movie. It wasn’t that bad in this one.

Content: 5 s-words.

Conclusion: Just like Ruby Red, the climax for this book is very abrupt. So abrupt, in fact, that I sat there for several minutes blinking rapidly, the blank page before me not quite registering. Gideon and Gwen are once more at odds with each other, and I was left with hardly any questions answered. It was frustrating. As a whole, the book was interesting - while I read it. When I think back on it, I realize just how little really happened, and it was the anticipation of something happening which kept me going. I really hope Emerald Green finally has things happen.

Recommended Audience: Girl-read, teens, fans of this trilogy and Alexandra Monir’s Timeless.

Others in This Trilogy:
1)Ruby Red
2)Sapphire Blue
3)Emerald Green

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