Finding Ruby Starling by Karen Rivers

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Title: Finding Ruby Starling

Author: Karen Rivers

Published By: Arthur A. Levine Books (2014)


When Ruth, age 12, finds pictures of herself online—except her in different places, wearing different things—she begins to search and finds out that this person is a British girl named Ruby who has her same birthday and looks exactly like her. Translation? She’s found a long-lost twin!


  Finding Ruby Starling by Karen Rivers was overall a very interesting read. Being told completely by emails and other computer data gave a good grasp for the characters, but left me unable to truly connect or relate. I loved the writer’s creativity at making it an all-email-told story, but sometimes it just seemed unrealistic, such as when Ruth’s parents email her from downstairs, “Come down, honey. Your ice cream’s melting. We have something to talk about,” and she responds, “I’m coming down. Don’t let the dog eat my ice cream….” and goes on for seven more sentences. Or when she relates an entire conversation of her parents, word for word, from memory to Ruby in an email or vice versa. Still, it wasn’t badly done.

I really liked the way this storyline developed between Ruth and Ruby, trying to figure out the mystery behind the seperation. When Ruth mentions it to her parents, I felt their reaction was written perfectly, with worry for their daughter, who’s trying to locate, in a way, her birth family. Ruth did overdo it a lot, but it is all emails, and emails are going to have sentences in all caps, texting shorthand, and the such, so what else can you expect?

And it did captivate me—I had to keep reading to find out what happened. How did they get seperated? Why are they not together? Will they end up together?

On the other hand, I did not like the email idea in the sense that it skimmed over other important events, and I was annoyed that such crucial scenes got barely two emails, considering the rest of the events that happened got almost too many emails. Also, I was not very

satisified with the ending. I guess the answers were clear and sensible, but I did not like how the story itself ended, for reasons I’ll leave out so I don’t have any spoilers.

Negative Content/Notes:

There were references to Buddism—not that many, but there were some, as our main character’s dad was a Buddhist—and despite the fact it didn’t dive too deep, it did bother me.


I guess I’d say it was a pretty good read. I doubt I’ll read it again, but it was fun while it lasted.

Rating: 3.5 ★★★☆☆

Recommended to: Not recommended.


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