Reading level: Young AdultOk, I'm going to admit that I didn't expect to love this book. I thought it would be ok, but I thought that since it wasn't a major publishing company, that it wouldn't be anything fantastic. I was really wrong. I feel so bad for even having preconceived notions!! I'm sorry book world!! I loved this one!
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook; New edition (February 1, 2011)
Buy the book: Amazon
Gabriella has never spent a summer in Italy like this one.
Remaining means giving up all she’s known and loved…
and leaving means forfeiting what she’s come to know…and love itself.
Most American teenagers want a vacation in Italy, but the Bentarrini sisters have spent every summer of their lives with their parents, famed Etruscan scholars, among the romantic hills. Stuck among the rubble of medieval castles in rural Tuscany on yet another hot, dusty archeological site, Gabi and Lia are bored out of their minds… until Gabi places her hand atop a handprint in an ancient tomb and finds herself in fourteenth-century Italy. And worse yet, in the middle of a fierce battle between knights of two opposing forces.
And thus does she come to be rescued by the knight-prince Marcello Falassi, who takes her back to his father’s castle—a castle Gabi has seen in ruins in another life. Suddenly Gabi’s summer in Italy is much, much more interesting. But what do you do when your knight in shining armor lives, literally, in a different world?
There was so much that was just awesome about this book. I loved the time travel element! And the fact that they were in Italy was fabulous. I loved traveling back to medieval times, reading about sword fights, (gorgeous) knights, battles, horses, and castles. And the great thing about the time travel element (one of them, anyway) was that the heroine was modern. She was strong and feisty, and not at all ready to act like a "proper lady" and let the boys do all the fighting. Gabi was a very strong character. Sometimes a little too strong, getting herself into all sorts of trouble....but that's what made it such an interesting read. But she was also kind, and compassionate, and thoughtful. I really enjoyed her as a character.
Even though this could be considered historical fiction, it didn't really have that feel to it. It wasn't bogged down with a lot of boring historical facts. It was fast-paced, and adventurous. And if all the fighting, adventure, mystery and time travel wasn't enough, Waterfall has a perfectly frustrating, but absolutely sigh-worthy romance. Talk about TENSION!! The tension between Gabi and Marcello was so thick you could swim in it! I think I was every bit as tormented as Gabi was.
One of the most impressive things about this book is that I feel like it transcends the ages. I feel like a thirteen year old could pick this up and love it, a sixty year old could do the same (and everyone in-between). I also feel like it transcends genres. If you don't like historical fiction, you'd probably still like this book. If you don't like time travel, you'll probably still like this book. Waterfall is just a really good story with fantastic characters, a beautiful setting, a whole lot of action, and a romance that keeps you wanting more.
Sexual Content: Mild*
Other Notables: None
For more details check out Waterfall on Parental Book Reviews.