Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Review: Vortex by Julie Cross (Tempest #2)

Vortex (Tempest, #2)
Vortex by Julie Cross
Hardcover, 352 pages
Expected publication: January 15th 2013 by St. Martin's Griffin
 *Received an Advanced Copy from the publisher for a fair and honest review*
Warning: Contains some spoilers from Tempest for those who haven't read it yet.
Julie Cross's Vortex is the thrilling second installment of the Tempest series, in which the world hangs in the balance as a lovelorn Jackson must choose who to save.

Jackson Meyer has thrown himself into his role as an agent for Tempest, the shadowy division of the CIA that handles all time-travel-related threats. Despite his heartbreak at losing the love of his life, Jackson has proved himself to be an excellent agent. However, after an accidental run in with Holly—the girl he altered history to save—Jackson is once again reminded of what he's lost. And when Eyewall, an opposing division of the CIA, emerges, Jackson and his fellow agents not only find themselves under attack, but Jackson begins to discover that the world around him has changed and someone knows about his erased relationship with Holly, putting both their lives at risk all over again.

My Thoughts/Review

I now know why this book was named Vortex. It took me on a backwards and forwards journey through time that is still making my head spin. Vortex starts off right where Tempest left off and the whirlwind adventure continues to even more towering heights. I can’t believe that Julie Cross has added even more twists and turns to this already face-paced story. If you guys remember at the end of the first book Jackson completely alters the events that happened to him and Holly by going back in time and changing the day they met. After that he decides to jump right into Tempest to get away from everything he is feeling. Then the story gets more complex and things get more and more disastrous for Jackson and the new and old people in his life.

I loved how this sequel starts and how it dives right into the story. Jackson’s whole world has turned upside down and now he needs something to occupy himself. Of course he would jump right into tempest agent training. I really liked the Tempest Agent Training Diary that Jackson writes to Adam and it was the perfect way to get the book started. It really adds to how Jackson had to grow over time and deal with his feelings and how he decided to cope with them. Learning to be an agent with Jackson was one of my favorite parts of the story. I loved learning about the different divisions of Tempest and how all of the skills they were learning would come into play later in the book. His adventure from beginning to end had me wanting for a happy ending but knowing that anything could happen at any time. Jackson’s life as an agent is definitely different from the first book and in the end you don’t know if Jackson will survive everything he has had to go through.

Jackson is one of my all time favorite male character points of view. You don’t really see that many male perspectives in YA and I appreciate Julie Cross for creating this amazing universe through his perception. I really feel a connection to Jackson, that in some ways we are a lot alike, and that is one of the main reasons I have loved this series so far. All of his mental struggles with his abilities, friendships, and love interest are relatable in so many ways. You can really tell that his love for Holly will be forever, no matter how many times he changes things and that is something to draw you in to this story.

The introduction to some new characters in this book was something I really enjoyed getting to read about. Lily Kendrick, who is Jackson’s partner, is one of my favorite characters from this series. She was so relatable to me and was one of the realest characters I have ever read about. I loved her genius and how she cared about other people, but could really kick ass at the same time. All of the agents in Tempest have horrible pasts and I really liked getting to know some of them, to really get a sense of the background to all of their characters.  

Overall, I really loved reading Vortex and all of the new elements and twists and turn that added to the complexity of the story. I have no idea what is going to happen next in the third book of this story because that ending was definitely a wicked cliffhanger. Julie Cross put all of the characters in a real sticky situation that I really hope everything turns out all right for everyone in the end, but who knows, anything can happen with time travel.

Even though I thoroughly enjoyed the book there were still some flaws I can’t help but mentioning. I did get confused sometimes during the book because you really have to remember a lot of the details of the story to pay attention to the plot and some of the places Jackson time travels to. That is why I recommend rereading Tempest before you read Vortex. When the third book comes out I plan on rereading all three together to complete the story for me. Also this book is very fast-paced that for some readers they might not be able to keep up with it. I like my books somewhat fast paced and I was able to understand for the most part everything that happened. So really it is your discretion if you think you can handle this amazingly adventurous book.  
I recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of fast paced thrilling reads who can handle some science fiction thrown there way. If you read Tempest then you have got to get this book and read it immediately, your head will spin at the amount of things that are contained within its pages. Julie Cross is an amazing writer who has an amazing talent at spinning up an adventure filled book at every turn of the page. She puts another thank you paragraph to her fans and readers in her acknoledgements and I just love that she does that. So I want to take the time now to thank her for writing such an amazing book series so far. Definitley check this book series out, you don't know what your missing. =]
Overall, I give this book:
"An adventure filled thrilling vortex of a read that will keep your head spinning, in a good way." =]
5 out of 5 Stars
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Happy Reading. =]

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