Monday, March 5, 2012
Series: Tempest #1
Author: Julie Cross
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
More Info: Goodreads || Amazon || Book Depository
Source: Bought my own copy and got it signed at Books of Wonder
Challenge: 2012 Debut Author Challenge
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’m not normally a fan of science fiction, as I prefer fantasy and a good romance over it any day. Most science fiction novels were summarily missed as “boy novels” in my brain. And then I came across Tempest, read its synopsis and fell in love with the idea of it. And I’m very excited to declare that – yes, this book is AMAZING. It seriously blew me away since I wasn’t expecting to love it as much as I did! Julie Cross did an admirable job of weaving science fiction elements, romance, friendship and a hint of mystery into this fun debut!
Jackson Meyer is the star of the show in this novel, and not just because he can jump in time. While everything is started off by his attempt to keep his girlfriend Holly safe, the novel is about so much more than their relationship. If anything, the relationship is a clever tool used to keep parts of the book lighthearted and appealing – which balances out the darker, mysterious side of things.
Throughout the course of the novel, Jackson discovers the extent of his abilities, his history and also attempts to figure out what he will do and how that is going to affect his future. Even with all the pressure on him and the harrowing experiences he goes through, he manages to remain smart and determined and quite brave really.
Though, for the most part, Jackson seems like a typical nineteen-year-old male (though I have no idea what that’s like since I’m female through and through), I thought it was nice when his more vulnerable side came out. There are a couple of heartwarming scenes in there and moments where I felt sympathetic and understanding. His scenes with Holly were wonderfully written.
I’d love to go in depth about the other characters in the novel, but that may lead to a few spoilers, so I’m going to avoid long descriptions. Some other characters that deserve a highlight are: Holly (who is a surprisingly interesting girlfriend character, despite being mostly a damsel in distress), Adam (Holly & Jackson’s genius of a friend) and Jackson’s father (who is one of the most complex characters I’ve ever met in YA fiction). There are a couple more people I’d love to mention – but that would be spoilers and I promised I wouldn’t do that!
I was really blown away by this story. It’s mostly because I went into it not know what in the world to expect and came out of it reeling from new theories and information. With the deceptively simple concept of traveling through time, I was surprised by how complex a backstory Julie Cross has written for this novel. The possibility of this explanation for time travel had never occurred to me before, but now that I’ve read it, I feel like going, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Though there’s a lot more to learn about time travel and its origins and its consequences, I think Julie Cross did a remarkable job laying down the basics for us.
I think that the fact that the love story is woven in to the story and is not necessarily its major plot (which was what I thought before I actually read it) is pretty darn smart of Julie Cross today. It’s a great way to keep a common, steady event running throughout the novel - something for readers to go back to when the overwhelming information comes into play.
I don’t want to spoil the book for people who haven’t read it yet, so I guess I will have to leave off and just say that I thought what Julie Cross did and what she will continue to develop in the Tempest series is pretty darn cool. I never thought I’d be interested in a book like this, nor that I would find myself as invested as I did, but she’s definitely proved me wrong.
Personally, I say you should…
Read this story if you’re interest in YA with a science fiction twist. I haven’t read anything like it as of yet, but it’s got me interested in exploring the wealth of books with a sci-fi twist. Julie Cross writes an interesting, believable and exciting tale that I found extremely hard to put down – and I hope that you enjoy it as much as I did!