Monday, April 27, 2015

More Riddles and More Ghosts and More Time Travel! Oh My!

A great sequel!

From Goodreads:
Gwen’s life has been a rollercoaster since she discovered she was the Ruby, the final member of the secret time-traveling Circle of Twelve. In between 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.

At least Gwen has plenty of help. Her best friend Lesley follows every lead diligently on the Internet. James the ghost teaches Gwen how to fit in at an eighteenth century party. And Xemerius, the gargoyle demon who has been following Gwen since he caught her kissing Gideon in a church, offers advice on everything. Oh, yes. And of course there is Gideon, the Diamond. One minute he’s very warm indeed; the next he’s freezing cold. Gwen’s not sure what’s going on there, but she’s pretty much destined to find out.

Rating: 5 Stars
Sapphire Blue is the second book in the Ruby Red Trilogy, also known as the Precious Stone Trilogy. Just like I did with the first book in the trilogy, Ruby Red, I would like to start the review by addressing the beautiful covers. Both the paperback and hardcover are designed beautifully, however, I prefer the hardcover. The colors are again very vibrant and deep, and the intricate design around the front cover is very elegant.  The blue marks in the design are raised and they are made to look and feel like sapphires. 
As always, I will try to keep the review spoiler free, so some of my statements will be very vague. Book two starts exactly where Ruby Red left off and the story was easy to follow. With this book, we do get a few questions answered; however, it also seems that for every answer we get, there are more questions that arise. There are new riddles introduced that will have your head spinning theories and second guessing every character. Besides Gwen, I never know who I can trust in this series.
Gwen as a character develops even more in book two. She handles herself quite well, she is considerably grounded given the situation she finds herself in. One of the most frustrating things for her (and for me as I was reading) is the secrecy.  She is expected to fulfill a mission, but no one trusts her enough to provide her with information needed to successfully complete the mission. She is always given bits and pieces of information while all the adults around her, who are supposed to help her, are keeping vital information back. She still has her best friend Lesley, who as always is great at research and digging up things for Gwen. The bond and trust between the two friends is written so beautifully. The friendship between them is so powerful and trusting. Lesley never doubts what Gwen is saying, even when she talks about ghosts and gargoyles that no one else can see. In addition to James, the very charming ghost we were introduced to in Ruby Red, in Sapphire Blue we meet Xemerius; a gargoyle demon, which again no one except Gwen can see. Lesley soon finds a way to use him for their cause.  With so many secrets being kept from Gwen, Lesley suggests they use Xemerius to their advantage. He not only proves to be very useful in listening in on meetings and conversations that Gwen is left out of and then conveying that information back to the girls, he also helps Gwen with things she must learn about different time periods. I absolutely adored Xemerius in this book; he provided a lot of comedic relief to some of the most intense situations throughout the book.
One thing that I wasn’t expecting was the frustration I felt towards Gideon in this book.  I believe the author is really trying to show character growth in him.  In my opinion most of his faults can be attributed to the way he was raised. I think the ideas of his uncle in regards to women, in particular the Montrose women, have influenced him.  I truly believe that out of all the characters in the trilogy we will get the most character growth in him by the conclusion of the trilogy.  He has a long way to go and lots of readers to win over; still I believe in him. I think a lesson to be learned in this series is that while children are heavily influenced by the beliefs and attitudes instilled in them by the people raising them, they can overcome that and decide on their own what is right and what is wrong. I had to constantly remind myself that he is only 18 and thus still maturing. As I said, I believe in him and I am looking forward to his journey.
Just like with Ruby Red, one piece of advice I have is to make sure as you read along, to bookmark the family trees, because they are complex and you will want to refer back to them as additional clues are revealed. 
I am looking forward to reading Emerald Green, the final book in the trilogy!

1 comment:

  1. Yes being in her place I would go bonkers! Everyone treating you like your just some silly girl but making you take part in their missions even though they don't explain it...she is stronger than me. I would have told them in book one to shove it where the sun don't shine I wasn't helping until they treat me like a real person with feelings lol.

    I adore Lesley and Xemerius they are my favorite characters honestly! He was just so darn funny in the most random of times bringing much needed comedy into darker scenes.

    I agree that his behavior is influenced by the way he was raised, clearly around those with low opinions of women and their places. Still I don't believe that excuses him and I'm non to happy with him at the end of this as you well know.

    Great review as always! One more left in this series!