The Girl with the Red Balloon (The Balloonmakers, #1) by Katherine Locke

The Girl with the Red Balloon (The Balloonmakers, #1)

When sixteen-year-old Ellie Baum accidentally time-travels via red balloon to 1988 East Berlin, she’s caught up in a conspiracy of history and magic. She meets members of an underground guild in East Berlin who use balloons and magic to help people escape over the Wall—but even to the balloon makers, Ellie’s time travel is a mystery. When it becomes clear that someone is using dark magic to change history, Ellie must risk everything—inclu...

Details The Girl with the Red Balloon (The Balloonmakers, #1)

TitleThe Girl with the Red Balloon (The Balloonmakers, #1)
Release DateSep 1st, 2017
PublisherAlbert Whitman Company
GenreHistorical, Historical Fiction, Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Time Travel

Reviews The Girl with the Red Balloon (The Balloonmakers, #1)

  • Cam (abookeater)
    A copy was provided by the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review"All the facts in history books couldn’t prepare someone for standing in a place where history was present tense".It's going to be easier for me to just jot down what I loved about this book that try and elaborate an essay so here we go: This book definitely falls on the heavier, darker side of YA. In a way, that makes it even more relevant and important to t...
  • Nenia ✨ Queen of Literary Trash, Protector of Out-of-Print Gems, Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Mother of Smut, the Unrepentant, Breaker of Convention ✨ Campbell
    Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest09/27/17: This book is currently $1.99 for Kindle. I adored this author's District Ballet Company series, so when I found out she was writing a book about magic realism and time travel about WWII, the Berlin Wall, and romance, the question wasn't so much, "Do I want this?" as "How badly do I want this, and when will the book be out?" The story itself seems to be paying homage to Nena's 99 Luf...
  • Stacee
    I had only heard good things about this book and several people I trust couldn't stop gushing about it. Sadly I was disappointed. l liked Ellie well enough. She was sort of bland and I struggled to connect to her. I didn't see any of the extraordinary, amazing, and brave traits that everyone else saw. Kai and Mitzi were both intriguing, but also sort of meh. There is a third POV and once I figured out who it was and how it tied together, I skippe...
  • Kate (beautifulbookland)
    Guys, do yourselves a favour; either go and request this book on NetGalley, or take note of when it is released (or do both, like I am) because it is seriously one of the most beautiful, magical, heartbreaking stories I've read. It made me cry on numerous occasions. This review is going to be all over the place because my emotions are all over the place. The ending is so perfect, but so sad and it just...gah. I'm crying again."What could change i...
  • Ava
    Four stars, maybe more. Wow.It's the next day now (I finished this at 11 last night) and I'm still shocked by how much I enjoyed this book. Do you like:-Jewish main characters-multiple points of view-time travelling stories-diversity (Jewish mc, Romani mc, queer mc)-historical fiction-learning more about the Holocaust and the Berlin Wall?Then you'll love this book. I most definitely did. My very small quibbles:-I wasn't a *huge* fan of the writin...
  • alice (arctic books)
    Overall, I liked this one! I'm looking forward to Locke's future works. I thought the time traveling aspect was incredibly fun, especially because I'm not a huge time-traveling person despite loving science-fiction. I liked the idea of the red balloon, serving as a way to save lives and as a huge symbol during this time period. I also enjoyed the shifting POVs between Benno, Kai, and Ellie, as I felt as if it gave me more development as to the im...
  • Arielle ⭐ Cursebreaker ⭐
    *Reposting because this beauty is actually out now. Do yourselves a favor and get you hands on it ASAP*If you gave a girl a magic balloon, she’ll become something else.OKAY. Can I just say that if this isn’t the best book I’ve read all year (I don’t think I can take that position away from ACOL) then it’s the one that’s left the biggest impact on me. And it still takes the cake as second best book. I requested this after having read O...
  • MsArdychan
    Please Note: I received an advance reader's copy of this book from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence the opinions of my review in any way.East Berlin in the 1980's was a seriously messed up society. One could look out their window and see the freedoms of the West, yet their city was on lock-down. Neighbors were rewarded for spying on each other, and the Stasi (secret police) bugged people's homes. I visited a coun...
  • Amy Leigh
    This book was amazing! I love the way time travel worked with the rich emotional and historical journey the author takes you on. The world building was great and the author definitely did her research. The character building was done really well especially for the time period the book is set in. I felt like I was there to witness history. I highly recommend!Jewish American high school student Ellie Baum has left Pittsburgh and arrived in Germany ...
  • Kay
    Thank you Netgalley and the publisher for approving my request for a free digital copy in exchange for a review. The Girl with the Red Balloon is a welcome addition to YA literature, and it worthy of being in the same category as "The Book Thief" and "Shades of Grey." However, unlike the former, the Girl with the Red Balloon blends history and fantasy in order to tell a story that is indeed well-needed. The book has three main characters, Ellie, ...
  • Shelly
    I'm not usually a fan of historical fiction but The Girl with the Red Balloon totally blew me away. It's definitely a unique premise with characters that you'd want to meet and talk to in the real world. I can't wait for the next book in this series.
  • Heidi Heilig
    Read and loved an early version of this magical devastation. Up, up and away!
  • Shae McDaniel
    My heart is full. This book ticks all the boxes in the list of "Things Shae Needs":1) A time travel element that I could pretty much follow (pretty much, which is not damning with faint praise--there's only one time travel book I've solidly followed ever, so time travel books join the ranks of horseshoes and hand grenades here.)2) Historical fiction that WORKS. This story actually taught me something about the era(s) it was set in, as the Cold Wa...
  • Liv (Stories For Coffee)
  • charlotte
    Galley provided by publisherI loved this book. Everything about it was so so good, and it was really enjoyable, even if I did take longer to finish it than I might have (reading slumps come at the worst time).The Girl with the Red Balloon tells the story of Ellie Baum, who is accidentally transported back in time to 1988 East Germany when she takes hold of a red balloon. She finds out there is a group of people who work to help those stuck in Eas...
  • Jeanmarie Anaya
    This one hit me so hard. What an emotional, utterly compelling book. Katherine Locke is an absolutely brilliant writer and a plot weaver like none other. Time travel stories always kind of leave me scratching my head, but not here. It's expertly crafted; I never felt disoriented. I'm still shook by all the threads (forwards, backwards, and sideways) in the timeline and the characters' relationships. This is the sort of book that makes you immedia...
  • Nita
    Full disclaimer: I'm Katherine's critique partner and friend, so. BUT. But. I read this book in its early stages and what a lush, beautiful, magical world Katie has created. There's so much to love in this book—the romance, the magic, the Jewish heroine and historical setting, Katie's prose—all of it is magical and wonderful, and you'd better be picking up this book when it comes out.
  • Ashley Poston
    This. Book.
  • Jessie (Ageless Pages Reviews)
    4.5Moving and lovely and timely. I found the villain's reveal/reason to be a bit underwhelming and unexplained, which is the only reason this is not a full five-star book.
  • Michelle
    Me, a self-proclaimed history devourer & wannabe SPONGE (Red Balloon reference, anybody?), travelling to Berlin in her summer holidays, OF COURSE requested this on NetGalley - not really expecting too much... boy, was I was blown away (gettit, like a balloon is blown away? Looool)SO, FOR YOU HISTORY NERDS OUT THERE, we have: - (fictional) first hand accounts of being a Jew in 1942 in Berlin, in Łódź ghetto AND in Chełmno concentration camp-th...
  • Atlas
    We are strange, sometimes, in the ways we choose to bear witness* * * *4 / 5 I wouldn't call myself a history nerd, but I would like to think that I have a reasonable understanding of a good chunk of European history. The Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall, however, have drifted under my radar - possibly because I've never been to Berlin but also perhaps because it's so recent, more recent than I had thought, such that it is less likely to become a...
  • Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
    You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight Oh, how I adored this book! Fun fact: The first, say, fifteen to twenty pages were not the strongest start to a book. In fact, I was downright wary of it. BUT. Things changed, and they changed quickly. As soon as Ellie pops (get it? Like a balloon?) back in time, into 1988 East Berlin, the whole tone of the book shifts. It goes from feeli...
  • Angelica
    I don’t know what I expected when I picked this book up a few months ago. If I'm honest, I had barely paid attention to the synopsis. All I knew was that it was a novel about Germany, time travel, and red balloons. All I knew was that I wanted to read it.What I did not expect was for it to hit me the way that it did, or to be nearly as good as it was.This novel is fairly short, the hardcover is set to have only 256 pages, and yet it is so full ...
  • Abi (The Knights Who Say Book)
    *I received an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*In 1942, a boy escapes from Chelmno concentration camp holding onto a red balloon.In 2017, the granddaughter of that boy grabs the string of a red balloon and is transported back to Berlin, Germany, 1988.I'm not a big fan of time travel books in general, and I wasn't really impressed by The Girl With the Red Balloon's take on it in particular. I found the plot a litt...
  • Brooke
    The premise of this story was actually beautiful, it just lacked “something special”. The writing was a bit all over the place and was there really a need for the f bomb so many times? The romance too was typical. However, though the magic in this book was a bit far stretched I did think it was a great concept; “a labor of love”, Locke says.
  • Chiara
    A copy of this novel was provided by Albert Whitman Company for review via Edelweiss.I got to 9% of The Girl with the Red Balloon and wanted to DNF. The first few chapters weren’t engaging me, and I just didn’t feel any pull to keep reading. I thought that ditching at 9% felt a little unfair, especially since there were only about two chapters in that time, so I decided to keep reading. I didn’t end up loving The Girl with the Red Balloon, ...
  • Samantha (WLABB)
    The Girl with the Red Balloon tells the tale of Ellie Baum, a teen who inadvertently time travels back to 1988 East Berlin via a magical red balloon. While there, she learns that there is an entire network of balloonmakers, who are using their magic to fight oppression by giving the gift of freedom to selected passengers.Well, that was a magical adventure, but that ending!!!! There I was, some tears escaping my eyes, and then that's all Locke gav...