The delightful Jane True is back again in this third installment of Nicole Peeler’s urban fantasy series, and if you enjoyed the last two books then you won’t be disappointed with this one.
Jane is back at home in Rockbill, trying to recover from the dramatic events of the last couple months, as well as sort out her feeling about her vampire boyfriend, Ryu, and her sexy Barghest friend, Anyan. But Jane’s respite is short-lived when she discovers that her mother has been kidnapped and is suspected to be in the hands of a dangerous “scientist” who specializes in horrific experiments on halflings. Devastated by the news, Jane is determined to take part in the search for her mother and bring to justice the person responsible for the kidnapping.
Tempest’s Legacy takes a much more sinister turn than the previous books, introducing a Doctor Mengele-like character who performs cruel experiments on halfling women. I was a bit surprised that Peeler had taken the book in the direction that she did since the series has been pretty light-hearted so far, mainly do the fun-loving personality of it’s protagonist, Jane. But this seems to be a popular trend with urban fantasy authors and all the UF authors that I regularly read seem to have done something similar (Patricia Briggs, Charlaine Harris, Ilona Andrews). Perhaps the authors hope to add some depth to their characters by increasing the level of danger and trauma that they subject them to, but unfortunately this plan backfires when the protagonists don’t respond in a believable manner, as often seems to be the case.
My main problem here is that in the course of the book Jane continues to behave in the same manner as she always has despite how unbelievable it might seem given the situations she encounters. When she should have been blind with terror and gibbering in fear (as I know I would be in a similar situation) she just gets a little nauseous. Jane then proceeds to negotiate the situation in an upbeat and cool-headed manner, sailing through the traumatic events unaffected. Which left me wondering why Jane was put through all of this in the first place.
I did still enjoy the rest of the book though, even if Jane did converse with her libido just a little too frequently (I was beginning to feel like it was one of the characters) and I appreciated that Peeler had cut back on much of the sexual humor and innuendos that the last book had so heavily (and unnecessarily) relied on.
My favorite part of the book, and I’m sure many Jane True fans will agree, was watching Jane and Anyan’s relationship develop in a new way. Anyan is one of the my favorite characters in the series and I really look forward to getting to know him better in future books.
And so, while the darker parts of Tempest’s Legacy didn’t work so well for me I would still say that this is one of the better urban fantasy books that I have read in a long while, largely due to the wonderful and unique characters that Peeler has populated it with. If you are looking for a fun and entertaining read than I would certainly recommend this book, but I would also suggest that you begin with the first book in the series, Tempest Rising.