Saturday, April 9, 2011

"Waterfall," by Lisa T. Bergren--Time Travel, Intrigue, Hot Italian Guys

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What red-blooded American teen-aged girl wouldn't want to be transported to a time and place where she's surrounded by hot young Italian guys?

That's exactly what happens to Gabi Bettarini in Lisa T Bergren's Waterfall. Oh, but there's more. There are medieval feuds, violent battles and deadly intrigue. And the hottest young Italian guy, who has his eye on Gabi, has a fiancee who pretty much hates her.

Plus, she can't find her sister, who apparently transported to medieval Italy with Gabi but is nowhere to be found.

I was thrilled when I received this book, because I've loved anything I've ever read by Lisa T. Bergren, and I've always been fascinated with time travel.

Then I saw that it was aimed at young adults. But you know what? That didn't dampen my enjoyment of the book one bit.

If anyone is equipped to be transported to medieval Italy, it's Gabi and her sister Lia. Because their mother and their late father were archaelogists, they've spent a lot of time in Italy and have a solid knowledge and sense of its history.

Their dad made sure Gabi had fencing lessons, and Lia happens to be an expert at archery. Both very handy skills to have in the setting in which they find themselves.

And Gabi is what the British call a "plucky" girl--brave, even daring, never one to back down from a challenge or stay too discouraged about some of the more daunting realities of medieval life.

Oh, and conveniently, she finds herself speaking in the Italian vernacular of the day without even trying--a smart device on the author's part.

The story is written from Gabi's perspective, and she sounds like a teen-ager (albeit an intelligent and well-educated one.)

Bergren says her eldest daughter Olivia and her friends were the first to read the book: "They set me straight on things that would make other kids roll their eyes." With those kind of consultants, Gabi's voice is authentic and genuine.

There's plenty of danger and suspense (along with the gentle romance) to keep the pages turning. And just the novelty of a 21st century girl finding herself in this era has a very engaging fish-out-of-water appeal.

I've never met a Lisa T. Bergren book I didn't like, and this one is no exception. Although I'm closer to Gabi's mother's age than Gabi's age, I'll definitely be reading the next book in this series!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Wynn-Wynn Media. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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