Title: Tempest Rising
Author: Tracy Deebs
Release Date: May 10, 2011
Cover Designer: N/A
Age Audience: YA
Summary: 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.
Tempest Rising was an okay book. Better than The Mermaid’s Mirror, but that isn’t very high praise.
This doesn't really have anything to do with this particular book, but I wonder why most mermaid books have surfing. Maybe it's because it makes the protagonist seem close to the water.
Anyways, on to this book. Tempest, the protagonist, was a pretty typical character. I think her name was a little silly, but that’s just my personal opinion. I really hate it when authors give characters a passion that’s more told than shown, yet it happened it this book. Tempest says that she loves painting and wants to be an artist when she’s older. Then why didn’t we ever see her paint?
The romantic aspect included The Dreaded Love Triangle (yes, it is dreaded. I am so sick of love triangles), which was made up of Mark, Tempest’s on-and-off boyfriend, and Kai, a mysterious newcomer who doesn’t seem to be human. Kai sounds like a paranormal cliché already, doesn’t he? And while we’re talking about clichés, Tempest falls head-over-heels in love with Kai only about a week after they meet. But this time, Deebs couldn’t even use the “soul-mates” excuse. I don’t know whether that made it bearable or more pathetic.
The underwater world of Tempest Rising was so-so. Not terrible, not especially unique. However, some of the plot was unrealistic. You might be thinking, “This book is about mermaids, of course it’s unrealistic.” But sometimes it was unrealistic to the point of being ridiculous. I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but a couple scenes in this book made me think, “Whaaat?”
One of the only things I liked about this book was that Tempest’s choice to become a mermaid or not wasn’t the main focus. There was more conflict than that. Conflict created by an evil sea witch named Tiamut and a giant squid-like monster. It wasn’t nearly as exciting as it sounds, but it spiced up the story a little bit.
The writing was really repetitive. Every kissing scene was described with almost the same words, so it was like reading the same scene over and over again. Also, did we really need to read that Tempest’s dad looked “more like one of my friends than he did a man who was pushing middle age” every time he made an appearance? We don’t need constant reminding that he dresses like a young surfer.
The ending was vague. It’s never clear whether Tempest decides to stay on land or to live under the sea. Overall, Tempest Rising was a typical YA paranormal romance. If you’re looking for something new and fresh, I don’t recommend this book. Otherwise, go ahead.