by Lisa T. Bergren
Series: River of Time #1
369 pages, Historical Fiction
Reviewed by Cheep-A-Reep

Irresistible book full of action-packed adventure, though with some questionable elements.


Gabi and Lia are sure they will be bored for yet another summer in Italy with their mother, a passionate archaeologist. But while they're exploring a tomb, happenstance brings them to a passage to a different time period - the Middle Ages.

Gabi and Lia are separated. Gabi finds herself in a battle and is rescued by Marcello Forelli, a handsome lord. She's taken to his castle where she is taken care of and where she ends up kindling a romance with Marcello. But she knows she can't get too attached to him, because once she finds her sister she's going back home. What Gabi does not know is that finding her sister will turn out to be a dangerous journey for a girl from modern times. It'll be a summer both sisters will never forget.


During the Medieval times, there were many barbaric men, just like some of the men portrayed in this book. They are cruel, vulgar, and disrespectful, but their attitudes and life styles are portrayed as wrong and they are punished for it. Gabi lies a little throughout the book, but mainly because people would not understand that she has traveled from a different world. Mainly, the morals are good.

Spiritual Content

Spirituality is not particularly strong in this book. Gabi and her sister are not religious, but being in the Medieval times has made Gabi question whether God really is real. So, she prays a couple times to Him, as do a couple of other characters. There are many references made to God by many characters, including Marcello. There is also a high priest in the castle.


There are several battles. Wounds, fights, and pain are described. Many men suffer from severe injuries and many die. One man's torture is described.

Drug and Alcohol Content

Characters in the book drink lots of wine because of the time period, although there are a couple of references to becoming drunk. Someone is poisoned with arsenic.

Sexual Content

Some of the cruel, vulgar, men portrayed in this book sometimes reference to sexual things. One man starts unbuttoning his trousers. Gabi refers to some of the knights and Lords as hot. She falls in love with Marcello and they kiss, although he is already betrothed. Gabi turns many men's eyes throughout the book, but not always on purpose.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

Gabi does use the word "freakin'" once, otherwise the language is good. There is a lot of reckless behavior done mostly by Gabi, some of which does put her in danger.


This book definitely doesn't disappoint. There is a lot of action and a sweet romance that keeps the reader anticipating what will happen next. It may seem somewhat violent to some readers, however, and the fact that Marcello falls in love with and kisses Gabi when he is already betrothed is not exactly commendable.

Fun Score: 5
Values Score: 4
Written for Age: 13+

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