Book Review: Nicole Peeler’s Tempest Rising

Posted February 4, 2012 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Nicole Peeler’s Tempest Rising

Tempest Rising


Nicole Peeler

urban fantasy that was published by Orbit on November 1, 2009 and has 357 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Tracking the Tempest, Tempest's Legacy, Tempest's Fury, Eye of the Tempest, Tempest Reborn, Jinn and Juice

First in the Jane True urban fantasy series set in Rockabill, Maine and starring a book clerk suddenly thrown into the deep end of the supernatural community.

My Take

This was just too much fun! I loved how Peeler gave Jane two consciences: the slut and miss-prim-and-proper. She has created a very realistic Jane who knows intellectually that she is probably being used but emotionally she figures she should simply take advantage of a rare moment that will leave lots of memories.

Peeler provides a lot of background in this story and she does it so well that it is simply part of the story including the stringing out she does to torture the reader as to why it is that most everyone in the village seems to hate Jane. It’s bad. I know people are capable of this, but it always amazes me that they are so cruel.

One of the best things that happens in the story is how Jane’s experiences affect her outlook — I’m looking forward to seeing how she handles her life in Tracking the Tempest.

The way in which Peeler describes the goblins is quite different although, goblin preferences in Jane True could be pretty horrific for most of us…eek! The paperwork!!

The Story

Peeler sets us up with Jane and her life before she introduces the event which changes Jane’s life forever when she comes across a murder victim. It’s Jane’s interference that causes the others who live in Rockabill to come after Jane.

Then a supernatural investigator arrives in town and requires Jane’s assistance. An assistance that seems to require dinner, dancing, and picnics. Outings that enable Jane to discover the other side of life in Rockabill and a greater measure of support than she had realized existed for her. At least, until a third murder occurs and Jane has to attend the elven court outside Quebec.

The Alfar court of King Orin and Queen Morrigan appears exciting and new until Jane is exposed to its brutal underbelly. And learns how poorly half-breeds are regarded. And discover more murders. And the trophies.

It’s a determined Jane who returns to Rockabill. Determined to learn to protect herself.

The Characters

Jane True is half-human, half-selky, but she doesn’t find it out until well into adulthood; although she does have a desperate, passionate need to swim in all seasons. There’s something about the ocean that’s soothes. Her father is a fisherman forced into retirement due to a heart condition. Her mother disappeared when she was six and Jane and her dad work very hard at avoiding the topic. Jane works for Tracy in her bookstore, Read It and Weep. Jason was Jane’s best friend and eventually lover, until the tragedy.

Ryu is a supernatural investigator (vampire) for the supernaturals. He’s gorgeous, drives a Porsche Boxster, and becomes rather passionate about Jane. There is a tension between Ryu and Anyan that seems to escalate with Ryu’s attentions to Jane.

Tracy Gregory is the owner of Read It and Weep, the daughter of an old fishing family. She and her partner, Grizelda, love Jane and worry about her social life. Grizelda “Grizzie” pops off every once in awhile to film another porn video [as Dusty Nethers] and always comes back with exotic toys. Mr. Flutie is a retired fireman who walks with his dachshund Russ [he’s a nahual who has retired to be Mr. Flutie’s pet] every day. Sheriff Varga is in charge of the Rockabill police department. Louis Finch is one of Jane’s dad’s poker buddies and he and his wife Gracie run the Trough, a diner in the village. Amy Bellow is one of their waitresses and a nahual. Sarah and Marcus Vernon [both nahuals] run the Pig Sty, the local bar. All five are friends of Jane’s. Gus Little who bags groceries at the local store is a rock. Miss Carol is a young gnome and Nell’s niece. Iris is a succubus who runs a very elite clothing boutique. She has a lovely time outfitting Jane while Rhy questions her.

Anyan is a barghest, a BIG black dog — although he claims that Roald Dahl has it all wrong in his Witches! — and has watched over Jane all her life; he has some amazing healing skills, if you don’t mind some tongue action. Nell is a gnome and Rockabill is part of her territory. Trill is a kelpie, a sea pony — with seaweed pubes!!

Jane’s particular nemeses in town include Linda Allen and Stuart. Both hate Jane passionately and use a tragic incident in her past to make her life as miserable as possible.

Peter Jakes was thought to be a writer staying in Rockabill for its peace and quiet. Martin Manx is a goblin who gets killed which results in bringing Gretchen Kirschner, another goblin, into the investigation. King Orin and Queen Morrigan rule the Alfar court in this part of North America. Nyx is Ryu’s cousin and a nasty piece of work; Ryu prefers to feed on blood infused with lust while Nyx prefers hers with fear. Elspeth is the dryad maid assigned to help Jane while she’s at the elven Compound. Chester is an ifrit…a flaming one! Wally is a genie and a friend of Ryu. Jarl is Orin’s brother and his second-in-command at the Compound with some nasty servants. Nagas. Jimmu and his eight nestmates.

The Cover and Title

Don’t let the cover fool ya. I was expecting something manga-ish, but it’s more of a “comic hormance” as Peeler puts it with a nude Jane rising up from the water with her lovely big eyes and straight black hair as Anyan keeps watch from the shore and a full moon shines overhead with its cloudy wisps. The whole is framed in purples with a filled heart at the top, purple and red nagas threatening along the upper sides, sea branches on the lower sides, a coffin in the lower left while a selky representing Jane’s mom is in the lower right as large lilac bubbles float up the sides.

The title gives rise to the Tempest Rising within the supernatural community as lines are drawn in the sand.