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Tempest Rising

Tempest Rising

4.1 86
by Tracy Deebs

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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.


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.

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Suanne Roush
Tempest has her life the way she wants it—surfing daily before school, a boyfriend and group of friends who share her interest in surfing, and plans to become a famous painter after studying art in college. She wants nothing to do with the "gifts" her absent mother told her would appear after her seventeenth birthday, when she would have three months to choose between staying human like her father or becoming a mermaid like her mother. Weeks before her birthday, changes begin: a fall off her surfboard results in a near drowning before Tempest realizes her legs have become a tail and that she has developed gills. Although the tail disappears as quickly as it appeared, the gills remain. As her emotions become more confused, the ocean and weather become more volatile, resulting in a serious injury to Kai, a mysterious surfer who can read Tempest's thoughts and emotions. On the morning of her birthday, Tempest awakes to find a tattoo covering her back and realizes that she is not going to have three months to make her decision. Tempest Rising reads like a paranormal retelling of The Little Mermaid, complete with a sea witch threatening the heroine. There are many loose ends, so it appears there will be a sequel. This may appeal to girls looking for the next paranormal creature after vampires, werewolves, and fallen angels, although it is doubtful that mermaids will have their popularity. Reviewer: Suanne Roush
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—Tempest has lived her first 16 years as a typical human. She loves her dad, her younger brothers, her gorgeous boyfriend, and her life as a surfer girl. The only flaw in her perfect existence is the hurt and resentment she feels toward her mother, a mermaid whose return to the ocean years before left the family shattered. However, the pull of the ocean increases as Tempest's 17th birthday approaches. Warned by her mother that she would have to choose between her life on land and an unknown underwater world, she vowed that she would never embrace her mermaid heritage and abandon her family. This resolution is tested by the sudden appearance of Kai, who is an amazing surfer, irresistible to Tempest (despite the gorgeous boyfriend), and can't be entirely human. He's not. He's a selkie sent to protect her from the evil Sea Witch trying to take over the Pacific and is after Tempest due to an ancient prophecy. Circumstances force her to follow Kai into the ocean (despite the vow) and she begins to understand her mother's decision. The world-building is underdeveloped and the climactic sea battle is rushed, but the descriptions of kisses are equal to the lurid prose in any paperback romance. The first-person narration gives the relationship immediacy and, overall, this paranormal romance will satisfy voracious readers of the genre.—Caroline Tesauro, Radford Public Library, VA
Kirkus Reviews

Among the recent spate of mermaid books this easily stands as the darkest, even though romance remains the main thrust of the story.

Tempest, aptly named, must choose between life on land or in the sea when she turns 17. As seems usual in these stories, her mother was a mermaid who has returned to the ocean. Tempest experiences stormy emotions and frequent sudden bursts of anger as she faces what may not be a choice after all. If it's a choice, why has she grown gills on her neck? Tempest is an excellent surfer with a wonderful boyfriend, Mark, but when she meets Kai, a strange new surfer, she feels an instant and strong attraction. Kai turns out to be a sea creature too. He's trying to protect Tempest from an evil sea witch when lightening nearly kills him. To save his life, Tempest drags him to the sea then plunges into the ocean to follow when other creatures swim away with him. She swims to a magical kingdom where she and Kai do battle with the witch and find her mother. Deebs dispenses with the suspenseful battle quickly and returns to the romance, described in an increasingly Harlequin-esque style, and adds an intriguing, possibly sequel-ready, ending.

An exciting-enough story, seriously overdone, which many young readers will love. (Fantasy romance. 12 & up)

Product Details

Walker & Company
Publication date:
Tempest Maguire Series , #1
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

Meet the Author

TRACY DEEBS collects books, English degrees, and lipsticks. She has been known to forget where—and sometimes who—she is when immersed in a great novel. She is a writing and literature professor at Austin Community College.


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Tempest Rising 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 86 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tempest Rising was a wonderful book that I devoured in less than a day... that's how good it was. The characters were original, the reading was fun and the plot was exciting. My only thing with this novel, well my only two things, was that I wished there had been a bit more to the novel. However I can reconcile myself to this... it was a really good book. The one thing that I cannot reconcile myself to is what happens with her mother (I won't spoil it) but it absolutely broke my heart and made me want to scream at the book. Other than that, it was great! Anyone reading... do not hesitate to buy. =)
katieb206 More than 1 year ago
I am not usually a fan of mermaid stories but every now and then I find one that I truly enjoy. Tempest Rising is one of those few. Tracy Deebs' young adult debut creates a wonderful underwater world that I hope to read more of in the future. Tempest Maguire has no desire to be a mermaid. Sure, she loves the water but that doesn't mean she wants to leave her friends, family, and boyfriend to live in it. Too bad she doesn't seem to have much of a choice. As her seventeenth birthday nears, strange things start to happen to Tempest. She knows what's wrong with her but she doesn't know how to stop it. Kai does though but he may not want to help her stop it and the more time Tempest spends around him, the more she realizes maybe life under the sea wouldn't be so bad if she had someone to share it with. Mermaids are not my favorite creatures. A lot of the time they are very hard to relate to and they are kind of mean. Tempest was not that way at all. She was just like every other teenage girl just with more problems than mere puberty. It was hard not to like her and be drawn into her story. Kai was also a wonderful character. He was not a merman but I won't tell you what he was. Let's just say that I never guessed. I loved him completely though. He was so sweet and sexy! I could understand why Tempest was torn between him and Mark though. Mark was a great guy, I just liked Kai more. The underwater world was amazing. Trccy Deebs made it so vivid. I felt like I was there with Tempest. All the animals and creatures were wonderfully detailed. I would have liked to have seen more of the merpeople though and learned more about them. That was probably my only complaint with the whole book. Overall, Tempest Rising is a wonderful new paranormal story without all the vampires and zombies. It's a sweet story and I hope you will take the time to check it out!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BooksWithBite More than 1 year ago
I loved mermaid books. This book is a great read. Very adventurous. As soon as I started it, I knew I was a goner. Everything in this book, the elements, story pacing, as well as the characters were perfect! The characters in this book is what got me hooked. We the reader are introduced to Tempest, a girl filled with hurt, anger, and no understanding as to what is happening to her. Her growth in this book is amazing. I love it when characters learn things and grow from it. Granted she had every right to be angry and turn away. Instead she took a chance on something she didn't know and learn something knew. The pacing of this story had me entertain all the way till the very last page. Nothing is left to the imagination. Ms. Deeb's did a great job on describing the ocean, sea life as well as the history back round to the story. I really enjoy it when authors can give the reader a full understanding without the confusion. She also did a fantastic job on letting the reader feel the emotions of the book. Anger, hurt, love, forgiveness, all great things to make the reader feel like their in the story their selves. The love interest is very good. I adore romance and it was right on! I loved seeing Tempest come of her shell and give a chance. She is so insecure about herself, with the way things happened in her life that she is always weary about things. I love the Tempest is able to love once she lets it all go. At the end she has a better understanding that make her heart glow. Tempest Rising is a great, magical read that you will want to dive into over and over again. There is nothing like the feel of the water, letting yourself swim freely in a great pool of writing. But I have to warn you, once you get in, you won't want to come out!
Lauren817 More than 1 year ago
t is no secret I have a love for all books mermaid related. Therefore, when Tempest Rising landed in my hands, I was nothing short of excited, and luckily, it managed to be everything I was expecting and even more, as this mermaid book is nothing short of marvelous! For Tempest Maguire, she has always been a bit out of the ordinary, as not only did her mermaid mother walk out of her lives into the arms of the sea several years ago, but also Tempest herself is half mermaid. If this was not enough, with the arrival of Tempest's seventeenth birthday comes the biggest decision Tempest will ever have to make- to stay on land with her family or friends or become one with the sea. To Tempest, this answer seems like a no brainer- stay with her family. However, in the next few weeks, arrives a dark, menacing force, a boy who makes her heart race in ways it has not before, and dire consequences. Will Tempest make it out alive? What will her final choice be- mermaid, human, or somewhere in between? Only time and more pages can tell in this seductive tale of mermaids, romance, and a girl like no other! With Tempest Rising, came many wonderful aspects I could not help but love. However, my absolute favorite would have to be the main characters- Tempest and Kai. Lively, unique, and mystifying, the two of them quickly won my favor over from the start. Tempest, for example, was someone I adored from the start. Her character contained the perfect mixture of strong, weak, and loyalty that kept me rooting her from the first page to the very last. I thought her confusion over being a mermaid and the consequences that came with it where done wonderfully, as it was easy to feel her feelings across the pages. Better yet, I loved her relationship with Kai. Kai was a bread all is own. Smart, savvy, and sweet, he was adorable from start to finish. I loved his deduction to Tempest as well as how together they became quite the pair. With any good book comes a great plot, as well, and with Tempest Rising, this was exactly the case. Filled with action, drama, and secrets, this book had no problem holding my attention throughout. In all seriousness, I loved every single moment of it.the characters, the swoon-worthy setting, and the twists and turns were nothing short of amazing. Lastly, when tied together with Tracy's fabulous storytelling, this book is nearly unstoppable. Romantic and mesmerizing, Tempest Rising is a promising debut. If this is any sign of what has to come with the mermaid trend, be sure to count me in, as I do not want to miss a minute of it. Grade: A+
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As I first delved into this book, I truly thought this was going to be just another hokey teen romance/drama. The beginning is a little slow, which I largely attribute to too much emphasis on Tempest's "mommy angst" before her character is really developed. Beyond the slow start, however, is a delightful book. You really feel frustrated alongside Tempest when nobody will tell her anything, and get wrapped up in the unfolding love story. The author creates a believable fantasy world that leaves room for the mind to explore.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like it so far
Merfairy613 More than 1 year ago
I did enjoy this book, but it was not my favorite. I did order the sequel though. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
.5 Stars This sounds exactly like the movie The Thirteenth Year. A fantastic movie but if said movie was a book this would be so close to copyright it's not even funny.
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acornucopiaoflove More than 1 year ago
It's no secret to Tempest that she's half-mermaid. Her mother was open about it, her father thinks it's a gift, but Tempest sees it as the thing that broke apart her family. So, when she begins to develop mermaid characteristic (i.e gills), she has a bit of a meltdown. It's justified, since the first time she begins to change she goes from surfing to almost drowning. She's attempting to live a normal human life, including a romance with Mark, despite knowing that she'll soon have to choose between her life on land, and a life in the water. When Kai shows up, it becomes clear who she's really meant to be with. There was a bit of a love triangle, but her relationship with Mark didn't really stand much of chance. She does try to cling to it, much like she does to her human life, but it was obvious that she shared something deeper with Kai. I won't spoil too much about who Kai really is, but I can say that it came as quite a surprise. Tempest played the role of mother to her younger brothers, so that made her attraction to the sea bittersweet. She still deals with the abandonment that she felt when her mother returned to the sea, and refuses to do the same thing to her brothers. Avoiding the water is painful, too. Especially since every time she tries to resist, it seems like a certain sea witch shows up to try to lure her in. I thought that all of these struggles combined to make Tempest an extremely well-developed character. The beginning of the book deals mostly with Tempest's human life, and relationships. Her relationships with her family, friends, and lingering resentment about her mother take center stage. While I really appreciated being able to get into her head, I think I was expecting more of her time to be spent in the water. The tension built up, but I was hoping that she would get to explore more of the undersea world. I'm looking forward to seeing more of the world that Deebs has created, so I'm crossing my fingers in hopes of a sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tempest rising is one of my favorite books! Once you start reading you cant stop and there is more action at every page turn. This is the perfect book for people who love romantic stories and mythical creatures. The ending could have been better, but besides that there is no reason you shouldnt get this incedible book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read a lot and this is one of my favorites! Next is Tempest Unleashed, so read it! ~Coral Mermaid~
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omgosh! Thats all i can say this is the best book ever. And that is saying alot since i read so much. I really really really really really really really really really enjoyed this book. It had a little bit of a slow start but once i got into it i could not put it down. I reccomend this to everyone ! BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!
Frenchiebella More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. I was hesitant at first, but it was a good read =)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am one for fairytales and romance stories And right at page 1 Chapter 1, I was hocked on to Tempest Rising. I could not place it down. I can not wait for Tempest Unleached to come out. I highly recommand this book. If you like Romance or fairytales, this is your book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;-)