Publication Date: May 10, 2011
Acquisition: received ARC for review
Tempest Maguire wants nothing more than to surf the killer waves near her California home; continue her steady relationship with her boyfriend, Mark; and take care of her brothers and surfer dad. But Tempest is half mermaid, and as her seventeenth birthday approaches, she will have to decide whether to remain on land or give herself to the ocean like her mother. The pull of the water becomes as insistent as her attraction to Kai, a gorgeous surfer whose uncanny abilities hint at an otherworldly identity as well. And when Tempest does finally give in to the water's temptation and enters a fantastical underwater world, she finds that a larger destiny awaits her—and that the entire ocean's future hangs in the balance. (from Goodreads)
It's been a little hard for me to write this review. Mostly because I know this book just wasn't for me. Tempest Rising is not, by any means, a badly written book and the story is actually very interesting. In the end, there were just too many elements that rubbed me the wrong way.
First off - there is a love triangle. I don't like them - and that's just my opinion. You might be the type that enjoy this type of 'love' in your readings. I also have to put 'love' in quotes because really? Everyone in this story seemed pretty selfish to me. Especially Tempest. She says she cares for her family and her friends and her boyfriend but really? I didn't see it. Even when she was trying to help everything was still all about her. I never warmed up to her and I didn't like the choices she made.
Also, and again, this is just a pet peeve of mine. A 200+ year old paranormal / magical being 'loving' and hooking up with a 17 year old? Even if that 17 year old is also not quite human? It grosses me out. It's the main reason I couldn't stomach the Twilight Saga. A 200 year age difference - no matter how young someone looks or acts is very unappealing to me. So, there was that.
Otherwise? I actually really enjoyed the storyline. The fact that Tempest knew about her mother's past and knew what she herself was from the very start of the book was refreshing. The underwater world that Tempest's mother comes from was fascinating to read about.
But in the end, the love triangle and outrageous age difference between the complete stranger Tempest finds herself draw to for no reason did it for me.
I've been reading other reviews of Tempest Rising so I know I'm in the minority as most people loved this book. You might too. If you like mermaids, you'll like it. If you like what has (to me at least) become the norm for YA romance plots, you'll like it. If you're looking for refreshing newish paranormal elements, you'll like it.
As for me? I'm filing this one in the 'not for me but probably for you' file :)
2.5 / 5 Stars
*Tracy Deebs is a pseudonym of Romance novelist Tracy Wolff. Tempest Rising is her YA debut.