Imprisoned in Time by Laura Gay has the intriguing storyline of a young woman who slips through a portal from modern day Italy into the treacherous and opulent 1400s Italy of the Borgias. The young women, Elisa, initially seeks to return to her modern Italian life, but soon gets drawn into the Borgia's household as maid to Giovanni Borgia's wife. She also encounters Cesare Borgia and finds herself attracted to the handsome and charismatic pope's son.
The best aspect of the novel is the descriptions of the various members of the Borgia household. Infamous characters from history such as Cesare and Lucrezia Borgia are brought convincingly to life and, rather than just forming a backdrop to the story, actually play key roles and interact with Elisa on almost every page. When Elisa finds herself falling in love with Cesare, her life in 15th century Italy becomes complicated and dangerous as she finds herself caught up in the Borgia's webs of intrigue.
The novel moves with a quick pace and keeps the reader turning the page, eager to find out whether Elisa can find her way back to 21st century or whether she finds love and contentment in 15th century Italy. The only drawback of the story is the awkward language usage and syntax. The title pages indicate that the book has been translated and that translation has resulted in many misspellings and strange turns of phrase. This can be jarring while reading the story, particularly when one has finally gotten as lost in the 15th century as Elisa. However, despite the language difficulties, the positives of the story remain: an interesting premise, a gutsy heroine, and great characterization of fascinating historical figures. In the end, Imprisoned in Time, is a satisfying and worthwhile time-travel novel.
Elisa is a high school student, with all the usual concerns of all girls of her age: family, boyfriends, school. One day, though, she finds herself in an entirely different time: the Rome of the Borgias, and she has to learn how to survive in a world which is completely different from her own. While desperately seeking a solution to go back to her time, two young men fight for her love: the charming but wicked Cesare Borgia and Cristiano, honest and loyal. The former is ready to kill to have her, while the latter would give his own life for her. Who will conquer her heart? In a crescendo of action this story will charm you from the first page to the last.