Chelsea's Reviews > Crossing to Paradise

Crossing to Paradise by Kevin Crossley-Holland
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May 18, 08

bookshelves: 2008, advance, historicalfiction, own, youngadult
Read in May, 2008

A solid but not amazing book. (Reading the author's bio, it turns out that this is connected to an earlier Arthur trilogy he wrote, which makes me wonder if prior knowledge of the characters would have made it a better read. More on that in a minute.)

Gatty's voice is fabulous. I mentioned in a review the other day that I dislike tongue in cheek historical fiction, where the author gives their characters knowledge they would not have had at the time, and Crossley-Holland completely avoids that. Gatty is bright but completely uneducated, young and naive, sweet but bullheaded, and a great character.

The overall plot was very slow to begin and then flew through the last third of the book - the characters were traveling so fast I had to keep rereading to make sure I knew where they were.

I found her romance with Arthur very odd, because we as readers don't meet him until the last 15 or so pages. Gatty thinks and talks about him frequently, and there are other connections throughout the book, but it struck me as a very odd way to write a romance, even if it was a side plot. (Explained, I think, by the fact that Arthur has his very own trilogy by the author, presumably giving more background between the two characters.)

I could have done without the hints of dues ex machina at the end, but overall a very interesting look at a time period I don't often read about.
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