Light Riders and the Fleur-de-lis Murder
by Ann Goldfarb
Long Before the Eiffel Tower stood the Bastille….
When 15 year old Ryn and his younger sister, Aeden, find themselves in Paris, France due to the murder of a distant relative, they cannot resist the temptation to travel back in time to find the killer. Although they think they have mastered Snell’s Law of Refraction and a way to use light for time travel, something goes terribly wrong. The pair finds themselves in 18th century Paris a day before the storming of the Bastille and the start of the French Revolution.
To make matters worse, they are lost in the underground sewers and their only hope of survival rests with a member of a secret society of revolutionaries who is bent on killing the aristocracy. When Ryn and Aeden learn that his next victim is their ancestor, who has sought refuge in the Bastille, they are forced to conceal their identities and find a way into that fortress to rescue the gentleman.
With a bloodthirsty mob of angry citizens only hours away, Ryn and Aeden must rely on their instincts and skill to escape a frightening fate. Will time be their ally or their enemy?
First off, I have to say…I LOVE this book! Want to hear more about it? 🙂
Light Riders and the Fleur-de-lis-Murder is one of a series. It’s not the first book in the series (which I haven’t yet read) but they can definitely be read out of order. There was enough information within the story to hint at what happened in the previous book but not too much backstory. This book would be perfect for the 6th-9th grade age group, but as an adult I really enjoyed it. I read the Magic Tree House books with my second grader and this reminded me of a similar style but designed for much older kids.
As a former language arts teacher, this is a book that I would have recommended to my students. It’s completely fictional and fantasy but it has a lot of historical facts tied in with the French Revolution. The author has obviously done a lot of research and I love how at the end of the book there are actually questions that the reader can answer. The book was designed perfectly to be used within a classroom for small group or whole class reading.
I adore time travel books, so that’s what first drew me in to want to read the story. The details in the setting were so descriptive I felt as though I were actually in the past with the characters. Ann Goldfarb uses rich descriptive language to make the reader feel as though they can see, hear, and smell exactly what the character’s are experiencing.
Along with the fun fantasy adventure, the accurate historical facts make it seem as though the story could actually be plausible. The author also tied in a lot French language throughout the story to make it seem realistic. As I read, I kept thinking that my French teacher in middle school and high school would have recommended this book to my class.
Any downfalls to the story? Each chapter switched back and forth between the two main characters. I think this is perfectly fine because it helps to provide a wider viewpoint of the story. Even though each chapter clearly labels which character is featured, for some reason I kept having a hard time keeping track and I would have to glance back to the beginning of the chapter to see which POV I was reading. I think this is just my own attention issue and even though it did distract me a little, the story is still very much a 5 star book in my opinion. The characters and setting stayed with me long after I finished the story and I really want to read more books in this series.
For any middle school/high school teachers out there or parents, I would HIGHLY recommend this book!!! Entertaining and educational. 5 enthusiastic stars *****