Ruby Blue is the first in a four-book series by Julie Cassar. It was an okay book in my opinion. While it kept me interested from start to finish, there were a few things that I thought could’ve been done a bit better…
Meet Ruby. She’s your average (somewhat dorky) ice-cream eating, garden-loving teenager, who is constantly being annoyed by her little brother, is best friends with possibly the only Goth kid in town and, oh yeah…she sees fairies.
After Nick Martino (possibly the hottest guy she’s ever known) finally asks her out, she can barely manage a two-word sentence when a bizarre incident strikes their lakeside town. Stumbling bare-foot through some interesting dates, will she ever find love? And what does Ruby do when more strange events continue to occur? Will she keep her gift of Fairy Sight a secret?
As an ancient myth unfolds and new mystic fairy tales come to life, Ruby and her menagerie of friends tackle some extraordinary circumstances with her very ordinary abilities in this modern day fairy tale.
As you can tell by the synopsis, the main character in this book is Ruby. Ruby is kind of a tomboy. She doesn’t like to wear dresses if at all possible, enjoys gardening, and has Chucks in every color imaginable. Oh, and she can see fairies. She’s been able to see them since she was five years old and met two fairy siblings named Anya and Brennan in her mother’s garden. They’ve been inseparable ever since.
Ruby also has a gay best friend named Jeremy. Jeremy dresses like a goth kid by wearing black clothes every day. He sure doesn’t act like a goth, though! In fact, one of his first lines was “What’s up, Buttercup?” I mean, that doesn’t sound very goth-like to me. And he is basically a walking trope of the gay best friend. He is overdramatic, flirts with every guy he meets, says things like, “Honey” and “Sweetie,” obsesses over nail polish and clothes, etc. It was just annoying.
The writing style is kind of odd. It’s written in 1st person past tense. The first few chapters were a bit rough for me to get into because the main character, Ruby, addresses the reader as if she’s having a conversation with them. I don’t think I’ve read any other books that have done this before, so it was pretty unique, if jarring. Unfortunately, (or should I say fortunately?) Ruby quits addressing the reader after the first couple of chapters.
The formatting was also a bit weird. It looks like there is an extra space between each paragraph. And occasionally, two characters would speak in the same paragraph, which isn’t supposed to happen. They should have been separated into two paragraphs. These things threw me off when I first started reading, but I acclimated pretty quickly.
The final thing I want to talk about before I get to the spoiler-y things is the ending. It kind of felt abrupt. When I read the last sentence, I thought to myself, That’s it? I’m not sure what was missing from the ending to make me feel this way, though. Maybe the author could have set up some threads for the beginning of the next book? That’s the only thing I can think of to add.
Looking back at my review, I notice I didn’t say much about the things I did like. I couldn’t pinpoint anything specific I thought was done well, as awful as that sounds. Ruby Blue was entertaining and kept me reading, but I don’t think it is going to stick in my memory for long. It’s just too much like a generic YA Paranormal book. Not to say it isn’t a good book. Just generic. I give this book 3 stars out of 5.
There were a few plot twists in this book, but one was too easy to figure out. I guessed that Anya and Brennan were fairy royalty about 10 pages in, and I was right!
The ending seemed a little too simple. I mean, the page from Da Vinci’s notebook was written in Italian, which Nick’s father just happens to speak. And Ruby just planted Moon Flower plants and lo and behold, that’s what kind of flower they need? It was a little too convenient, in my opinion.
There was a huge plot hole near the end, too. Early on in the book, Ruby explains that the Moon Flower only blooms after dark. Yet, once she figures out that they need to use those flowers, she starts gathering them around 5:30 P.M. The book takes place in Michigan in the summer, so I don’t think it’d be dark by then. How were the flowers blooming already if it wasn’t even dark yet?