Gemma Hart is a Time Spirit, along with the rest of her family. That means her father can whisk her and her family back in time, and Gemma will have only seconds' warning. Secrecy is vital to her family and, not wanting to betray her family or lie to potential friends, Gemma has isolated herself from her classmates, living the life of a recluse. She admires Harrison Granger from afar, knowing they can never be together. When it looks like Harrison might actually return her feelings, the walls Gemma put up come crashing down as she tries to balance family duty with the whims of her heart. By falling in love, has Gemma put Harrison, herself, and her whole family in danger?
As you can tell from my 4-star rating, I really liked this book! Time travel is not necessarily an original topic in young adult fiction, but Melissa Pearl had an original take on it. Her third-person narration is excellent. She goes back and forth between the thoughts of Gemma and Harrison seamlessly.
Gemma is a very easy to relate to. I could see myself being friends with her (if she was the type of person to have friends, that is). It was sad to read about her loneliness, but then I understand why she had to live such an isolated life. Her relationship with the various members of her family were very well developed. I especially loved her twin siblings. They were always looking out for her, and their occasional disagreements and arguments made them seem realistic.
Harrison could be a little cheesy sometimes, but that was pretty realistic, too. Guys aren't always the best at showing their feelings, so you have to love Harrison for giving it a valiant effort! He and Gemma were adorable together. Cheesy or not, I am definitely one of those girls who loves reading YA just so she can go "Aww!" at a cute relationship.
I loved all the time travel segments of the book. I think Melissa Pearl did a very good job with capturing the different historical eras. I really liked it when, upon returning to the present, Gemma could see the effects of her actions in the past. That was neat! Also, the way her family time travels, and the fact that Gemma had no control, was a very cool twist on time travel stories. The mythology behind it was also very interesting . . . I hope to learn more about that in the next two books.
One small criticism I have is about some minor grammatical errors. As an indie author myself, though, I know it's hard to catch them all! So I won't spend anymore time on that. The story was strong, and the errors weren't so big as to take away from that, so I really can't complain too much.
Golden Blood is the first book in the Time Spirits Trilogy.