Eye of the Tempest (Jane True)
by Nicole Peeler
Cover Artist: Sharon Tancredi
Review by Cathy Green
Orbit Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780316128087
Date: 01 August 2011 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
After the tumultuous and dramatic events of Tempest's Legacy, Jane True is happy to be home in sleepy Rockabill and looking forward to some downtime, although she's not looking forward to explaining to her father that her mother is never coming back due to having been killed by the faction of supernatural beings that Jane and her friends have been fighting. And she's looking forward to her new developing relationship with Anyan the Barghest and his absolutely fabulous Wolf Challenger Restaurant Range. Unfortunately, Jane's life never goes as planned. On their way to see Jane's father, they're attacked by a human team of assassins in full SWAT gear. Anyan is gunned down and Jane nearly kills herself protecting him and herself. And that's just the first two chapters of Eye Of The Tempest.
Jane wakes up a month later to find that the mysterious blond woman with the tattoos from the end of Tempest's Legacy has made herself at home and ingratiated herself with Jane's friends and family, that her father now knows everything and doesn't seem at all phased by the fact that Jane's doctor is a goblin. Of course, it helps that the goblin fixed her father's heart problems. Unfortunately, one of the reasons for bringing Jane's mortal father into the loop is that the war between the factions is heating up and a major battle is brewing in Rockabill of all places.
Some sort of mysterious force is possessing random Rockabill residents and causing them to utter cryptic warnings. It turns out some sort of legendary source of power is hidden somewhere in the Rockabill area and that there are four locks that need to be opened. Jane and her friends and Jarl and his faction are soon in a race to open the locks and find the clues that will let them have access to a very old power source possibly dating back to the time of the origins of the supernatural races.
As with the three previous books in the series, Peeler does a good job of balancing the serious and humorous scenes without the tone shift seeming at all jarring. So we get the running gag of Jane never being able to consummate her relationship with Anyan because of interruptions mixed with their first attempt to open a lock going disastrously wrong, resulting in Nell the Gnome being turned into a baby gnome with no power leaving Rockabill unprotected. Basically, Peeler has blended a funny sexy paranormal romance with a traditional fantasy quest novel in Eye Of The Tempest. All the elements are there, although the romance is mostly unconsummated due to Anyan being turned into a puppy at the same time Nell was turned into a baby gnome. The quest is a race against time and Jarl's faction, with his minion Phaedra repeatedly showing up to threaten Jane's life.
Eye Of The Tempest wraps up a number of ongoing threads in the series while setting up the next phase of Jane's life as she comes into her full powers and accepts her role in the supernatural realm. Jane's father now knows everything, so she does not have to lie to him and her friends do not have to glamour themselves around him, and the restoration of his health means that Jane is not tied to Rockabill by family obligations, although Rockabill will always be home, given that there is a seat of power in the Old Sow. Jane is also much more confident about what she wants from life and love and more accepting of her role as a major player in the supernatural arena.
While it is possible to read Eye Of The Tempest without having read the four previous books in the series, it really makes more sense for people to start at the beginning of the series with Tempest Rising, as each book builds on the next and the current book makes much more sense if you know everything that's happened involving intrigue amongst the Alfar and the major betrayal at the end of Tempest's Legacy. I'm very much looking forward to reading what happens next when Tempest's Fury comes out in 2012.