Hmm…. I’m a bit disappointed with this final installment to the trilogy. Again, the running theme is a Shakespeare play, certainly made obvious by the title: The Tempest. However, before I state my dislikes, I must first give Livingston credit. If you deconstruct each book in her trilogy, the skeleton of each of the books follows the exact structure of a Shakespeare comedy or tragedy. It’s cleverly done. Yet, this also becomes one of the points on which the books fail, i.e. in terms of predictability. If you’re familiar with the Shakespeare plays on which these books are based, you’ll also know how they’ll end.
I didn’t mind this so much in Darklight, because of the strong characterization and wit that was apparent from the very beginning and lasted throughout. However in this book, the characterization’s not done as well, and because of this, Tempestuous
has a rather slow start. The initial conflict is a bit clichéd—apparent in so many contemporary fantasy young adult novels: the all important lovers-dangers-lies speech. Yet I liked how all members of the supporting cast of characters were completely against this reasoning—outwardly declaiming it and regardless of dangers, revealing all. In this sense, the book was refreshing.
But again, this book’s main detraction for me was the end. It wrapped up too cleanly. Yet, if you know Shakespeare, this shouldn’t be unexpected. A part of me just wishes there was more conflict and moments of acerbic wit. Yet, regardless, I do like these characters, and overall I did end up enjoying this book and the series.