A very thrilling read indeed, just like I was promised by a good number of readers when I was searching for a good read.
With Waterfall, Bergren unlocks a door to ancient Italy and invites readers not just to peak in but to step in and see, and experience it for themselves. The research was clearly well done - she even provided a bibliography at the end of the novel, wouldn't you know- and this read engrossed me so much, I just kept flipping pages! One minute, I'm on page 80 the next, p. 200. And I just could not stop smiling while reading.
I like a heroine with spunk, tenacity... that 'try-me-and-you'll-see' vibe and Gabriella is all that and more. (She gives them soldiers a gooood run for their money.) Marcello is a gentleman and a knight in shining armor through and through and I think every romantic will find the romance in this book quite enjoyable. (Watch out for the kissing scene, ladies!!)
That being said, what I liked less: (* COULD CONTAIN MINOR SPOILERS!*)
- Didn't understand why at one point, Marcello told Romana that Gabriella confessed having feelings for him, when at that moment, it was unnecessary for Romana to know that and what he said wasn't entirely the truth.
- LUCA! Dear Luca. I so dearly hoped that he might end up finding a lover in this book... Gabi's sister maybe. But as it turned out, Evangelia can be quite selfish many times.
- While reading, I kept on hoping that Gabriella would reveal her secret because the more she kept it to herself, the more confused Marcello became and I found that unfair. (When you truly love someone you don't do that to them.)
And lastly, just a side note, I found the pace slower toward the end of the novel. I want to keep on reading this series though, I sense that there are more good things to come. And one thing is for sure:
So help us, Lisa T. Bergren is able to write very, VERY well
Time travel has almost intrigued me! How I would give anything to see past cultures, societies, eras! The thrill of the unknown!
In Waterfall, the story is about these young sisters, Gabrielle and Lia who join their archeological Mother for a vacation in Italy. Only to find this vacation will be unlike any they have ever experienced! They get transported back 700 years back to pre-Ancient Italy! Lia get's separated and captured by the enemy through most of the book, so this novel is basically told through Gabi's view. She is rescued by a legit Knight in Shining Armour, (no pun intended), Marcello. Forbidden feelings start to bloom against the pair, as he is betrothed to another. In the beginning Gabi finds herself begging to leave this century, but in the end longing to stay, until a major fight leaves her at the brink of death, she must choose! *I WON'T SPOIL IT*
I love how Gabi makes Marcello reconsider his choices, and open his eyes to unlimited possibilities in life! Gabi and Lia are the most unlikely, likely heroines you'll meet! Typical teens one minute, smart, brave and cultural the next! A mix of Bella Swan and Katniss Everdeen!
*I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest, non-profit, unbiased review*
I didn't like two things about this book: it has a fairly slow, jumpy start, and some scenes seem to be included only for the purpose of manipulating the reader's emotions and not to move the plot along.
That said, it's still a thrilling story, the heroine is delightfully strong, and the quality of the research is amazing - the author truly brings this historical setting to life. I definitely recommend it to any history buffs who appreciate strong female protagonists.
As a middle school teacher, I am always looking for books that will interest teen readers, teach a lesson, and span the interest level to their parents as well. This book was fantastic. It was a quick read with well developed characters and a truly fun plot. All 3 of the books in the series were fantastic.