Saturday, November 5, 2011

Tempest Review

Tempest by Julie Cross
Series: Tempest #1
Expected Publication Date: January 17, 2012 - St. Martin's Griffin 
Rating: ♥♥♥♥

*I received this ARC through a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway

The year is 2009.  Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a normal guy… he’s in college, has a girlfriend… and he can travel back through time. But it’s not like the movies – nothing changes in the present after his jumps, there’s no space-time continuum issues or broken flux capacitors – it’s just harmless fun.

That is… until the day strangers burst in on Jackson and his girlfriend, Holly, and during a struggle with Jackson, Holly is fatally shot. In his panic, Jackson jumps back two years to 2007, but this is not like his previous time jumps. Now he’s stuck in 2007 and can’t get back to the future.

Desperate to somehow return to 2009 to save Holly but unable to return to his rightful year, Jackson settles into 2007 and learns what he can about his abilities.

But it’s not long before the people who shot Holly in 2009 come looking for Jackson in the past, and these “Enemies of Time” will stop at nothing to recruit this powerful young time-traveler.  Recruit… or kill him.

Piecing together the clues about his father, the Enemies of Time, and himself, Jackson must decide how far he’s willing to go to save Holly… and possibly the entire world.

When I first began Tempest I thought "Oh, this is like Jumper" (the movie with Hayden Christenson) then I thought "Wait, no it's definitely not!".  Trust me the only thing remotely similar is that Jackson calls time-traveling "jumping" other than that there really is no similarity. Jackson is moving through time not just from location to location. Tempest is like a YA version of The Time-Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (which I highly recommend). There is so much more to this book than the love story between Jackson and Holly. There is a struggle between Jackson and his father as well as Jackson coming to terms with his sister Courtney's death. Jackson having to come to terms with his own abilities and what those abilities mean for him and the people around him. There are underlying issues of morality and ethics; war and the significance of human life.

If you thought Tempest would be just another YA book with some supernatural aspect, then you were wrong. Although the supernatural aspect is at the forefront of the book (a huge element of the plot) it is not the only thing that defines the main character. Jackson is a very compassionate boy and we go through a large series of emotions with him. Even though this is the beginning of a Trilogy Jackson is already growing within the first book, and I find that amazing and a sign of a great author. Usually the beginning of a character's growth starts at the end of the first book within a series, but with Jackson it is through out the first book and the start of a significant change at the end (I really hope that makes sense).

I cried and laughed (out loud) and my heart really went out to Jackson for everything he has to go through. I'm not sure I would be able to handle the same choices that he has to make, because he has to consider more than just how he will be affected by his decisions. Tempest truly stands alone in the sea of YA books on the market right now. I haven't experienced anything like it, and I believe readers will appreciate something different. 

The only fault in Tempest is that we are thrown into the middle of chaos (small chaos) at the beginning of the book and it was very confusing as to what was going on. Plus, I was let down that we didn't have a real description of what Jackson looks like. We know what the other characters look like because Jackson describes them, and we have small hints of what he looks like but I had trouble trying to imagine him in the way the author wanted me to. Although, maybe it's better that we get to imagine him in the way we want to.

Overall, I can see why this book is creating such buzz, and why Summit Entertainment would buy the book even though it hasn't been released yet. It will be interesting to see what a film adaptation will bring to this book. 

Will you read Tempest?

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