Emerald Green is written by Kerstin Gier. It was first published in 2010 in Germany and then in 2013 by Henry Holt, translated by Anthea Bell. It is the third and final book in a trilogy, of which the first two books I reviewed here and here. Gier’s website can be found here.
“Gwen has a destiny to fulfill, but no one will tell her what it is.
She’s only recently learned that she is the Ruby, the final member of the time-traveling Circle of Twelve, and since then nothing has been going right. She suspects the founder of the Circle, Count Saint-Germain, is up to something nefarious, but nobody believes her. And she’s just learned that her charming time-traveling partner, Gideon, has probably been using her all along.”
What I Liked:
Okay, so remember all those doubts I discussed in my review of Sapphire Blue? I am happy to say that none of them came true, and that this book is an amazing finish to the trilogy. Tons of things happen (including, yes, Gwen delivering the note, helping to conk Gideon over the head, and stopping herself from being discovered), the romance is cute, there are some truly hilarious moments (check the second quote below for one of my favorites) and the ending reveal was pretty surprising!
So, first things first. The time travel was so well-executed here, and really has been throughout the trilogy. I loved the “crossing the streams”/Back to the Future aspect and all the little plot advances made. It’s so interesting to have Gwen’s second visit to Lady Tilney happen four years before her first visit to Lady Tilney, so really she’s meeting Lady Tilney for the first time in her second trip rather than her first. Also, it’s never explicitly mentioned, but I have to mention it because I thought Lucy/Paul/Gideon/Gwen’s plan with the chronograph was brilliant—the reason Lady Tilney gave Gideon her blood was obviously because however many years before they had come up with the plan and she had to give her blood to complete it. It’s mind-boggling stuff, and it’s great!
I was hesitant about the romance in the first two books because I was afraid it was overshadowing the plot, but Gideon’s “Gwenny’s” won me over. Also, it wasn’t overshadowing the plot, after all. And they’re cute.
As I said, the end reveal was pretty surprising; I was definitely not expecting it. I like the unexpected!
It was also super cute to see a different side of Lady Arista when Lucas was still alive.
What I Didn’t Like:
Um, so, what’s up with that immortality thing? That was random. And a little cliché and convenient.
Recommended Age Range: 14+
Warnings: Violence, swearing.
Genre: Realistic, Science Fiction, Supernatural, Historical Fiction, Young Adult
My grandfather wiped the palms of his hands on his trousers. “I’m beginning to feel too old for these adventures,” he said.
My eyes went to the chronograph. To me, it looked exactly like the one that had sent me here, a complicated device full of flaps, levers, little drawers, cogwheels, and knobs, covered all over with miniature drawings.
“I don’t object if you contradict me,” said Lucas, sounding slightly injured. “Something along the lines of but you’re much too young to feel old!”
“Oh. Yes, of course you are. Although that moustache makes you look decades older.”
“Arista says it makes me look serious and statesmanlike.”
“Don’t be scared,” said a voice behind me.
Those must certainly fall into the category of Famous Last Words, the sort that are the last thing you hear before your death. (Along with “it isn’t loaded” and “he only wants to play.”) Of course I was terribly scared.
Emerald Green ends the time-traveling trilogy with all the twists, time-traveling shenanigans, and cunning plots you could want. Gideon and Gwen are really cute, and Gwen proves she’s not just a clumsy, mediocre girl. The immortality was strange and felt a little cliché and out of place, but otherwise, a fun trilogy.
You can buy this here: Emerald Green (Ruby Red)