Title: Tempest Rising
Author: Nicole Peeler
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Jane True (Book 1)
Publication Date: November 1, 2009
Format: Paperback, 359 Pages
ISBN-10: 0316056588 (Orbit)
ISBN-13: 978-0316056588 (Orbit)
Reviewed by: Sheila
Living in small town Rockabill, Maine, Jane True always knew she didn’t quite fit in with so-called normal society. During her nightly, clandestine swim in the freezing winter ocean, a grisly find leads Jane to startling revelations about her heritage: she is only half-human.
Now, Jane must enter a world filled with supernatural creatures alternatively terrifying, beautiful, and deadly- all of which perfectly describe her new “friend,” Ryu, a gorgeous and powerful vampire.
It is a world where nothing can be taken for granted: a dog can heal with a lick; spirits bag your groceries; and whatever you do, never-ever rub the genie’s lamp.
Quick & Dirty: A hilarious tale of a half-human’s introduction into the supernatural community, fraught with sex, danger, and one-liners.
Opening Sentence: I eyeballed the freezer, trying to decide what to cook for dinner that night.
Book series based upon mythological stories are a favorite of mine. That is why I was excited to start the Jane True series. Jane is a half-selkie that has been living as a human her whole life. After she discovers a body in the ocean, she is plunged into a world so unlike what she has ever known. Now she is helping a vampire investigate the deaths of other halflings like herself that are turning up dead. For someone as quiet and unassuming as Jane, she transitions quite well from ordinary to extraordinary.
Jane’s life in a small town is isolating and suffocating. She is considered a freak to the other townsfolk in Rockabill mostly based on the actions of the mother that abandoned her and her father so many years ago. After the death of her boyfriend and first love, her status went from avoidance to contaminated. With a few friends, and a non-existent social life, Jane is content to leave her dreams for something different to stay within the pages of one of her books. When she discovers her true heritage, her dreams are given a second chance. She is introduced to others that are, in their own way, just as different and diverse as herself. Not that her current friends are not colorful enough. But she does feel the grip of isolationism lessen with this new discovery. Finding a people that may consider her one of their own is heady for Jane. Throughout the book, Jane’s character tries to reconcile her new identity, including that of her new relationship status with handsome vampire, Ryu Baobhan Sith.
Ryu is hotness. Blowing into town and sweeping Jane off her feet makes him extra yummy in Jane’s eyes. He is her guide into this new world and becomes her lover in the process. It is hard to gage Ryu’s true feelings for Jane. On the one hand, he is enamored of her and her “special” blood. On the other, he is a man with a position of authority that carries responsibilities that may conflict with any relationship he has. Is this the type of man (er… vampire) that places duty over love? Though he expresses feelings for Jane, will they be able to work out all the details that being together entails? And of course, is there a chance that there is another person (or barghest) that may place Jane’s life and well being above his own?
The big conflict in this story is about halflings and their rights. Some in Ryu’s world look to them as less than citizens. Others, including some of the royal Alfar, see halflings as the answer to their fertility problems. I love these types of conflicts that bring attention to inequality and civil rights. The conclusion of this novel does not resolve the larger issues at hand and it leaves the reader wondering at the larger implications of this topic. Whether or not this becomes a larger issue in later books, we shall have to wait and see.
Overall, this book was funny, exciting, and well paced. I enjoyed reading all about Jane True and her trials. This is definitely a series I can fall into, maelstrom or not.
All in all, and except for Mister Crazy Eyes behind the throne, I think that went rather well, I thought, proud of myself for bearing up under the pressure of being introduced into this utterly foreign Court.
You’re gonna get through this, I thought, suddenly feeling a wash of calm settle over me. It’s going to be okay.
And so, of course, my feet chose that moment to get tangled on a little bump in the carpet. I tripped, hard, nearly wiping out. It was only the fact that Rye threw himself in front of me to catch me that I stayed upright. He was on one knee, steadying me, and I was almost aloft in his powerful arms.
If we’d gotten only a smattering of attention on our walk in, all eyes were upon us, now.
For a split second, I had the wild idea to tell Ryu to go ahead and hold me over his head, like Johnny does Baby in the climax of Dirty Dancing, but I managed to keep a lid on that suggestion.
The Jane True Series:
FTC Advisory: I purchased my own copy of Tempest Rising. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. The only payments I receive are hugs and kisses from my little boys.
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