I had the pleasure of being a beta reader for Renee Duke's fourth entry in the YA fantasy Time Rose series. It's now available in ebook on Amazon (probably other stores as well).
See my review below the book cover and blurb.
THE TANGLED ROSE
by Renee Duke
The Time Rose Travellers know the Nazi regime will soon begin persecuting such ‘undesirables’, but keeping Hani and Nicko from becoming victims isn’t going to be easy.
Plagued by enemies from their own time, and not even sure who they’re supposed to be helping, they’re meeting with resistance from Nicko, and open hostility from Hani’s sister Marta, an ardent member of the Hitler Youth.
The time-traveling Rose series is one of my favorites in both time-travel and the YA genres. The series has taken us from the Tower of London, to the mudlarks on the Thames, to thousands of years in Canada's First Nation past. In each trip, the cousins, Paige, Dane, and Jack, travel back to become help history flow properly. Their task is to find the child in the past to which they're sent who possesses a match to the Rose amulet which expedites the time traveling.
The Tangled Rose takes us on a time trip to pre-war and Nazi Germany. This is a tough subject. How do you write for kids when you're setting them down in the midst of one of the most horrific times in history. How can the kids find the person who they are meant to help during those perilous times?
The first person they see who has a keeper piece (one of the Rose time travel devices) is a girl with Down Syndrome. She definitely needs help having slipped and hanging perilously off a cliff. A gypsy boy, Niko, helps them rescue Nani. The cousins figure their task may be complete. They've saved a kid in possession of a keeper piece. However, their own amulet doesn't give them the signal that their mission is over.
They discover the keeper piece doesn't belong to the girl they rescued, but to her older sister, Marta. What's worse, Marta has been taken up with the Nazi cause. She's not a pleasant person. She has been indoctrinated into the Nazi ideal. People like her own sister and the gypsy boy who helped rescue her are undesirables. The Third Reich will soon start to eliminate the non-Aryans.
Can the cousins figure out what they're supposed to do to help Marta? Maybe talk her out of being a Jungmädel (Hitler Youth). The cousins decide they need help from Uncle Gareth. Since he had been a piece keeper in his own youth, he can go along on their own time trip to help them figure it out.
Are the time travelers assigned to save Nani, the "defective", Niko, the gypsy, Marta, the obsessed Nazi, or is it somebody else?
I was totally caught up on the historical period in this book in the series. Renee Duke does an excellent job keeping up with both historical accuracy, the fantasy of the time-traveling children, and drawing the reader along into the next book. The hints are there. The kids will be facing their greatest challenge in the next book in the series. I can hardly wait for it to come out.