Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Tempest by Julie Cross

Title: Tempest
Author: Julie Cross
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (January 17, 2012)
Source: GoodReads Giveaway

From GoodReads: 

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.

I have been super excited to read Tempest by Julie Cross ever since I saw the cover. I dare you to look at it and tell me it's not amazing. Seriously. After the awesomeness of the cover, the summary completely drew me in. It sounded so cool. A good mix of fantasy and romance. The promise of an epic series. All good stuff in my book. I had to have entered every contest available trying to win an ARC. The problem with this is that it created a lot of hype and expectation in my mind. And there's nothing I hate more than picking up a book I'm excited about and being disappointed.

Good thing I wasn't. ;)

Tempest is a fantastic book. I enjoyed every minute of reading it. Jackson is an authentic guy voice and a lovable character. He's not the perfect boyfriend, but he's realistic and his sensitivity to his relationship and what he has changes with his experiences. The time-travel element is handled very well. We jump right into the story at the very beginning with no slow build-up. Yet, as a reader, I was able to keep up with what was going on. The complexity of time-travel grew as the story continued, but at a pace the readers could follow.  

What I really enjoyed about Tempest is how different it is from other fantasy romance novels. First, it's not a romance. There is a lot of romance in the book, but the story arc isn't a romance one. Jackson and Holly are a couple from the beginning, which is unusual in a YA romance-themed book. I like it. The romance is more about realizing what Jackson has rather than actually making it happen (though, through the magic of flashbacks and time-travel, those who like that kind of story should feel satisfied).  

Second, the characters are older. College age. This allows Cross to write more mature aspects of the book without trying to make it fit for younger characters. The characters are a little older, so no explanation for the more mature bits is needed. But, as the summary tells you, Jackson does go back in time and has some younger teen experiences. So, it's really the best of both worlds here.

Third, the story and characters are complex. It's a story that kept me thinking throughout. Some of the plot elements I was able to guess, others I got wrong. Either way, it wasn't predictable. Also, while I was reading I could tell there was so much more story to come. It makes perfect sense that this story would be a trilogy because there's so much more that can happen. I'm definitely not done with these characters, this universe, or this plot. I need more!

I really enjoyed reading Tempest and would recommend it for anyone who likes fantasy or romance. It's well-written, well-plotted, has great characters, and is unpredictable. Oh, and did I mention the amazingly beautiful cover? :D Great stuff.

Final thoughts:  Buy it. 

EDIT: Here's a preview of the audiobook:

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