Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Review: Tempest by Julie Cross

From the Back Cover:

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.

My Thoughts:

This book pulled me in so many different directions, I'm not sure how I feel about it. The plot is so complicated and convoluted that I won't even try to summarize it, but here's the crux: College freshman Jackson has recently discovered that he has the ability to jump back and forth in time. He and his genius friend Adam are experimenting with it and documenting their findings. Jackson thinks he's just having some innocent fun and doesn't realize he's been attracting attention. When two thugs break into his dorm room and try to force him to go with them, his girlfriend Holly comes to his aid, a scuffle ensues, and Holly is shot and killed. In a moment of panic, Jackson jumps back in time two years to 2007 and gets stuck there. For the rest of the book Jackson tries to get back to 2009 to save Holly, all the while being chased by other time travelers and the CIA--some of these people want to help him and some of them don't, and Jackson has no one to trust as he tries to figure out what is happening. And because he misses Holly so much, he strikes up a friendship with her past self and falls in love with her all over again. And this causes a whole other set of problems.

I think it's so interesting how people can read the same book and come away with so many interpretations. I've seen quite a few reviewers state that they didn't feel the characters were developed or that the love story was believable. Well for me, the love story was the best part, and I thought Jackson was a great character! He's not conventional and at times he borders on being unlikeable, but Cross does a great job of showing how he came to be the way he is and how Holly completes him. Holly understands him and doesn't try to change him. Jackson doesn't put much stock into emotions or relationships, even though he cares for Holly very much, but when he loses her he realizes how important she was to him. I thought the story was incredibly romantic and I got rather emotional at times. If I were to base my review solely on my emotional reactions and my investment in the characters, it would get five stars. BUT--

Here's what I didn't like about the story: there was so much back and forth time jumping that I think I got whiplash, and the mechanics, explanations, and rules for the time jumping made no sense to me. I could not grasp what was really going on and I got really confused at times. All this stuff about "tagging home base" and "alternate timelines" and "full jumps and half jumps"'s so complicated and it took away from the enjoyment of the story for me because I couldn't fully buy into the concept or figure out what the heck was going on. I think the premise has a few holes in it and I don't think it had to be nearly as convoluted as it was. So, you can see why I'm torn. This is the first in a trilogy and the ending caught me off guard and upset me, but the jury's still out on whether I'll be lining up to read the next installment.

My Rating:  3.5 Stars out of 5

*Please Note: This review references an advance copy received from the publisher through the Amazon Vine program. These are my unbiased opinions and I was not compensated in any other way for reviewing this book.


  1. This one has been on my wish list since I first heard about, but the reviews have been very mixed. Based on yours I think it's still worth trying, but I won't rush out for it.

  2. I love the premise of the book - too bad it wasn't executed a little bit better.

  3. I'm not really a fan of time travel books. I'm a little hestiant to read this one. I've read a lot of mixed reviews.

  4. I'm glad I have this book on my bookshelf, Jenny. Lovely review! I'll try to read it sooner rather than later now :)


I love comments! Getting feedback on my posts makes my day! Thanks for being here!