Another summer of ancient ruins in Italy? Teen sisters Gabi and Lia risk sneaking into the latest find, only to be whirled away when their hands touch the handprints near the warrior mural!
Gabriella emerges from the old tomb into the middle of a battle, with horsemen with swords, archers firing arrows through the woods! Where’s Lia? Now the ruined castle on the hill is a bustling fortress. Rescued from the leering soldiers in red by a handsome knight under the gold flag, Gabi is soon convinced that she’s truly landed in the past.
The knight Marcello explains that her hiding place sits on land that the red bannered Paratores are trying to seize for a rival ruler. Her modern jeans exchanged for a suitable gown, Gabi says she’s from faraway Normandy to explain her unfamiliarity with local customs at the Castle Forelli and asks her rescuers to help search for her sister.
When the castle is attacked, Gabi is thankful for her late father’s fencing lessons, but learns that the evil Paratores have Lia! Soon she is known as the warrior Lady Gabriella, as she fights to protect the people who saved her.
Oh, no - the sisters have landed in Toscana just years before the Black Plague sweeps the land! Can Gabi rescue Lia? Is there a reason that they’ve been brought back into the past? Is there a way to reverse the time trip? Can Gabi leave Marcello behind if they go back to the future?
This thrilling first book in The River of Time series sweeps you into the daily life, perils, and people of the medieval Italy that Gabi is growing to love (or is it Marcello?) - followed by Cascade (#2) and Torrent (#3).
Recommended by: Katy Manck, Librarian-at-Large (retired academic/corporate/school librarian), Gilmer, Texas, USA
When most American teenagers would love to spend their summer vacation in Italy, Gabi and her sister Lia have spent every summer there with their parents – famous Etruscan scholars. They would just like to have a normal summer vacation.
While on site where their mother has just found an ancient Etruscan tomb. Gabi and Lia are bored and go inside the tomb even though they have been told not to. While inside they find a set of handprints that fit their own hands perfectly. Each sister places one hand on a print turning the stone warm and before they know what has happened they have been transported to medieval Italy in the 14th century.
Gabi finds herself alone and right in the middle of a fierce battle between knights of two opposing forces. She is rescued by Prince Marcello Falassi who takes her back to his father’s castle and they take her in and take care of her. Gabi has seen the ruins of this castle in her other life. She knows where they are.
Even though Gabi is shocked by everything she sees she knows that surviving will be the most important thing for her to do. Gabi finds that surviving and fitting in involves more than she could have imagined, even killing people. As she struggles to find her way she also has to search for her sister, but staying alive long enough to look for her could prove very hard.
This book is Christian fiction. It is a very clean book but at the same time there is so much tension and a strong romantic thread that you can’t help but keep reading.
369 p. 978-1434764331 Ages 13 and up
Recommended by: Joleen Waltman, Librarian, Idaho USA