This was a well-written story by a seasoned author who knows how to weave a compelling story. The premise is intriguing and not something done ad nauseam in the YA genre. The basic concept of the story is that Marguerite, the young daughter of physicist parents, is able to travel between different dimensions by using a device called a Firebird and, once there, can take residence in the body of her alternate self. The possible existence of multiverses is explained very well to enlighten even those not familiar with the concept—although I will say some might feel it’s dumb-down and perhaps, at times, important points are brushed off by the characters saying things like “but I don’t really care how that works,” which is done one too many times.
What I enjoyed most was Gray’s ability to seamlessly put together 6 different universes and take us back and forth from futuristic settings to historical ones with hardly a glitch. She does a good job explaining the world’s technology or lack of it, and makes you appreciate the research that must have gone in the effort.
The romance element was very good on one side of the triangle—yes, I am sorry to say a love triangle exists—and would have been perfect if not for how the tender story between Marguerite and one of her beaus is belittled by the presence of the second one.
My least favorite part about the story is how the author conveniently breaks her own rules about how traveling between these multiverses works, and how some of the rules apply to everyone except Marguerite (Sorry, a bit too convenient!) The silliest instance was the fact that Marguerite could perfectly recall all the languages her host spoke, but could not remember how to waltz. The thing is, Marguerite needed a romantic moment with a gallant Russian officer, so the rule was tossed out of the window so he could get cozy with her.
In spite of these few faults, I enjoyed the book, enough to give book two a try in the future.