Thursday, July 21, 2011
David C. Cook, 2011
YA; Historical; Time-travel; Romance
My review of Waterfall
I mostly enjoyed the first book Waterfall except for some qualms around the whole time travel thing. I mean, I spend a not insignificant amount of time contemplating time travel and the ramifications of interfering with anything. Those worries are not wholely alleviated by this book but I have hopes for the third.
First, I felt conflicted by the love across time, which is a. improper and b. very much interfering in the space/time continuum. Additionally Gabi worries that she might be disrupting stuff instead of realizing that she already has by keeping Fortino alive for longer (see Timeless Love for an example of why it might be bad to aid an asthmatic during your travels through time), in addition to her and Lia's aiding of the Sienese and creating the legend of the She-Wolfs of Siena. We see one consequence but not enough for my taste. In the beginning, I also thought Gabi's modern speak was sometimes a bit closer to what an adult thinks a teen speaks like but as I move further away from my teen years, I also lose sight of how real teenagers act and speak.
But then I fell headlong into the story, on the edge of my seat as the action and danger just kept increasing. Both sides mean serious business and that meant even more suspense as Gabi and Lia maneuver through the deadly intrigues and warfare. They also brought their mom back with them, adding to their danger. Every time they got caught up in some plot, I wondered how Bergren could possibly get them out of danger...and then she did it in a believable and enjoyable fashion. I'm still not a big fan of Marcello (I'll leave him for Small Review ;) but I am very intrigued by Lord Greco, of ambiguous loyalties; I would like to see more of him. Gabi continues to be pretty kick-butt and remarkably mature and thoughtful about her love for Marcello, even as she wants to just give in and attempt to live happily ever after. She knows there's more to consider than that.
I felt that this book had more of a Christian aspect than the first book but that is appropriate since the setting is 14th century Italy, where everyone's Catholic. I didn't find it preachy or evangelistic so rest assured if you were worried about that.
SPOILER-another problem I had:
I was very disappointed in Gabi, Lia, and their mother's decision to rescue the father from an early death. I completely understand their motivation but that was a bad decision and I can only hope that Torrent unleashes a world of consequences on them as punishment for all of their meddling in time.
Cover: I like the first cover more with the pop of red but this represents continuity with the first cover so I'm happy.