Monday, November 11, 2013

Review: Waterfall by Lisa T. Bergren

by Lisa T. Bergren
Series: River of Time, #1
David C. Cook (February 2011)
Source: I purchased my copy
Amazon | Goodreads

What do you do when your knight in shining armor lives, literally, in a different world?

Most American teenagers want a vacation in Italy, but the Betarrini sisters have spent every summer of their lives among the romantic hills with their archaelogist parents. Stuck among the rubble of the medieval castles in rural Tuscany, on yet another hot, dusty archaeological 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.

Suddenly Gabi's summer in Italy is much, much more interesting.
I'm just going to start off by saying I loved this book so, SO much. From the start I knew I was going to love it, a couple pages in and I was hooked. Lisa knows how to get you in a place where you're so immersed in the story that you feel like you're right there experiencing it all for yourself. I felt like this book sucked me into the same time portal Gabi and Lia went through and plopped me right into the fourteenth-century! I love that!

Waterfall starts out with Gabi and Lia spending yet another summer at an archaeological site in Italy. Their mother and late father were archaeologists so they've spent every summer like this. When Gabi decides she no longer wants to sit around and do nothing, she talks her sister into joining her to explore ancient tombs among all the rubble. The two become curious about a pair of handprints inside one of the tombs that match their hands perfectly. How could they resist touching them?! After placing their hands on them, Gabi and Lia find themselves going through some sort of time portal. Once she releases her hand from the print Gabi soon realizes that she arrived alone. This is where her adventure in 14th century Italy begins as she searches for her sister. And boy is it a wild journey!

Oh my goodness what a fantastic story this is! It's told from Gabi's perspective, I absolutely love her voice, humor, and everything about her personality. Her character growth is something I enjoyed seeing throughout the novel. By the end she had become one of my favorite heroins. She's so strong and brave, not because that's how she always is, but because the situations she finds herself in require her to be. I thought it was so cool that she could wield a sword. How awesome is that?! I also love the relationship between her and Lia. You can see how much stronger they became when they were together.

Marcello is a noble knight Gabi meets when she comes out of the tomb. Right off the bat she notices how attractive he is, and by the way Lisa described him, he sounds like one handsome fella :) From there we can see what great chemistry the two have, the only problem is Marcello is betrothed to the daughter of a powerful man. And, oh yeah, how could they ever be together when Gabi is from almost 700 years in the future. Way to pick'em Gabi! Anywho, the blossoming romance between the two is so sweet, I couldn't help but root for them to end up together.

We don't see a whole lot of Lia in this book, but something we quickly learn about her is that she knows her stuff when it comes to using a bow and arrow. That skill sure does come in handy in this time period. I could tell she was just as brave as her sister in times of trouble and the scenes where she needed to use her mad archery skills were some of my favorite.

Luca is Marcello's cousin and right-hand-man. He's hands down my favorite male character at this point. He's so funny, charming, sweet, and apparently another good looking guy. I was constantly smiling while reading the scenes he was in. He just does that to a girl, you know? ;)

There is so much to like about this book, let's just name a few shall we? Strong female characters, swoon-worthy knights, non-stop action and adventure, and characters who say things like 'on the morrow' and 'fortnight.' Oh my goodness I love the way they talk! I would crack my family up when I'd randomly start speaking to them in this medieval language. They'd say I was reading a bit much, but you and I know that isn't even possible! Pssh! They're crazy :D

This book has a lot of history in it but it was never boring. Lisa weaved it all so nicely into the story and it was always interesting to read. It was so neat to read about how they did things before there was any kind of technology, or even toilets and indoor plumbing!

There were parts in the story that literally had me laughing out loud. I found this scene in particular to be hilarious. And it's even funnier to me because Gabi isn't in the best circumstance to begin with!

"I looked over my shoulder to Lia. There had to be an antidote. I'd taken it too long ago to throw it up. There had to be another option. If only we could Google it..."

Haha! I guess I find that so funny because of how much we rely on google to get information these days. When was the last time you googled something? Exactly.

This was such a fun, addictive book and I absolutely loved everything about it. All the action had me at the edge of my seat unable to stop reading. Waterfall is at the top of my 'Favorites' list' and I don't see myself getting tired of re-reading it anytime soon. Definitely check it out if you haven't already!

About Lisa T. Bergren
Lisa Tawn Bergren is the best-selling, award-winning author of over 40 books, with
more than 2.5 million copies sold. Her most recent works includes a YA series called River of Time (Waterfall, Cascade, Torrent, Bourne & Tributary), God Gave Us Easter, a devotional called Upside-Down Prayers for Parents and the Grand Tour Series (Glamorous Illusions, Grave Consequences, and Glittering Promises). She’s currently at work on a new YA series called Remnants, coming out in 2014.

Lisa’s time is split between managing home base, writing, and working on ducks with her husband, Tim ( Tim’s a worship leader, graphic designer and duck-sculptor. They have three kids–Olivia (18), Emma (15) and Jack (10).

The Bergrens make their home in Colorado Springs, Colorado.


  1. Great review, Crystal! Luca is definitely my favorite male character from this series. :D

    1. Thank you, Melanie! I'm having a hard time choosing between Luca and Greco ;) It's pretty close, but I'll just call it a tie :D

  2. I absolutely loved this series! I read it last winter and couldn't put the entire series down! So wish it never ended :)

    1. This is one of the best series I've read. Ever. I'm hoping Lisa is still planning on writing Deluge. I can't say goodbye just yet! :)

      Thanks for stopping by, Jaime!

  3. Great review! Waterfall is one of my favorite books of all time. :)

    1. Thank you!! It really is a fantastic book and one of my favorites, too :)


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