Release Date: 17th January, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
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 he jumps, there's no space-time continuum 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 not like his previous time jumps. Now he's struck 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.
Piercing 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.
Julie Cross's debut novel TEMPEST was on everyone's lips. With so many high praises floating around the blogsphere - from my favourite authors to my fellow bloggers - and even with the film rights now being bought for this new trilogy, I thought it was going to be minding blowing since I love myself some time travel if it's written right. However, despite those glowing reviews there were still some mixed ones that I've come across before the book's release and I completely understand where they were coming from. On a whole, TEMEPST was a decent read with enough elements to satisfy its readers and I can see its appeal, but if you're looking into the inner core of the book and seeing what it has to offer, I sadly found myself disappointed. Though I already prepared myself for this disappointment.
The story was fresh edgy and certainly had potential, and the author Julie Cross definitely takes the time travel genre to a whole new level. After all, it's a very different type of time travel so forget what you know about it. But for some reason . . . I don't know . . . it wasn't exactly the storyline itself that made me feel bleh it was the characters and the rushed situations they'd constantly found themselves in. Even parts of the dialogue had put me off. But first off, let's talk about Jackson - the main heroine of this tale.
Jackson was a very likeable main character. He was easy to get to know and relate to because he was good at being such a boy if you know what I mean, even though at times he didn't feel like a boy to me (I did question his sexuality at times with the things he says. Haha). But the main problem for me was how Jackson didn't exhibit normal teenage behaviour and it was a little strange for me to read. Maybe it was just me feeling this way, but when it came to love in particular, he was the boy who shoved those mushy feelings away and while that's completely understandable cause love is scary for a guy to experience, but then the next moment, without any warning, he was all like, "Okay bring on the love. Let's be with each other even though I don't want a serious relationship and have intimacy issues." I don't know if I'm asking for a little too much here, but I kind of wanted more development with his character and be more real and honest with his feelings . . . it just seemed unrealistic and forced at times. But never you fear readers because I still liked him and his relationship with his twin sister, who'd suffered frm cancer and died a few years back, and I admit, that was a pretty sweet relationship and probably one of the reasons why I connected again and again with Jackson.
Then of course there's his girlfriend, Holly, the one who gets "hurt" in the beginning of the novel and the sole purpose of why Jackson suddenly jumps back a few years into the past 'accidently'. Holly for me is difficult to describe with my feelings. I mean, am I the only one who didn't like her? She's pretty, she's popular, she's understanding, she's supportive and I get she cares about Jackson and all that . . . but seriously? I didn't like her one bit and didn't really care what would happen to her by the time I finished the book. I'm a meanie here, so I'm sorry about that. I think the main problem about her was that there was a lack of life and personality that I wanted so, so much from her character considering I, as a reader, wanted to feel what Jackson was feeling about the possibility of losing her. I honestly wanted to know why she was worth saving . . . so if she's indeed present in the sequel then I hope there's more to her than meets the eye because I didn't see the special side of her. She annoyed me, sadly.
Apart from her and Jackson, I did enjoy Jackson's friend Adam (he was pretty hilarious for the majority of the novel) and even Jackson's creepy Dad (yes I found him creepy for always finding an excuse to interrupt sexy-times between his son and his girlfriend and I found him pretty peevy haha). However, having a science geek for a friend and (slight spoiler here) a CIA-sort-of Dad was a little too convienent for the plot. But nonetheless they were a great addition to the supporting cast and I'll be looking forward to seeing more of them in the next book.
Now let's talk about the story itself. The storyline was a great, fun read but I was - now and then - confused by the events of time travel. First you're here and then you're there, and at times I questioned who's who and where the hell I was. Especially when it came to 009 and 007 Holly. I sometimes forgot which one was which. So it definitely does your head in this book, but in a good way I suppose because it get's you thinking and staying focused with each chapter that passes you by. But I found the events of the storyline too rushed and all over the place . . . but that still did not distract me from the book. It certainly had its fun moments, its sexy-times, its heartbreaking lines, and its cool action fighting sequences . . . so it get's bonus points from me for that. But unfortunately it doesn't go down that road of all fantastic-ness because I did skim through pages and got bored through scenes so I tended to put the book down and not have that feeling of excitement about it which is a shame.
Overall I didn't love it but I didn't hate it either. The bottom line is: If you're desperate for a teenage version of The Time Travellers Wife with plenty of adventure, lies, deceit, and mysteries, then TEMPEST is definitely your kind of read. However, when you do dive into this book, don't go into it with a lot of high expectations (which I did for myself) because it can go in either direction for you of loving and not loving it.
The Rating3/5 stars