Surface Tensions (Island Adventures #1) by G.R. Jordan
Read: 5th – 13th August 2018
My Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars
So, before we get into what I thought about this book, I want you to know that I was given a digital version of this book for free from the publisher (BooksGoSocial) after making a request via Netgally.com in exchange for an honest review.
Thanks for the advance copy.
So what’s this book about?
Surface Tensions is a novel (approx 267 pages) that kicks off GR Jordan’s new series – Island Adventures. This stand-alone sci-fi/fantasy story is an adventure full of suspense, romance and gentle British humour set on a Scottish island where the discovery of mermaids has divided a community; those who want to wipe them all out and those who want to save the enigmatic creatures.
If you’ve read any of my reviews before, you’ll know that I don’t post spoilers of any kind or reveal any plot twists in my book reviews, so here’s what the official blurb has to say about the story:
Mermaids sighted near a Scottish island. A town exploding in anger and distrust. And Donald’s got to get the sexiest fish in town, back in the water.
There’s something in the water and Donald’s got to look after it. On a quiet Scottish Island, local man Donald must navigate the dangerous social waters as mermaids are spotted. Unable to reject his inherent decency, Donald helps a stricken mermaid and engages the assistance of Irish incomer Kiera. When a fisherman is killed, they flee the growing rage as the locality rips itself apart in the name of revenge. With the local presbytery demanding a response, glamour models challenging the reserved image of the island and a rejected child hunting these new mammals, can Donald and Kiera keep a human fish under wraps and out of sight? Or will they succumb to the sharp end of a harpoon? Keep a good watch ‘cos something’s stirring the water.
“Surface Tensions” is the first story in a series of Island adventures from the pen of G R Jordan. If you love comic moments, cosy adventures and light fantasy action, then you’ll love these tales with a twist.
Get the book that Amazon readers said, “perfectly captures life in the Scottish Hebrides” and that explores “human nature at its best and worst”.
So, what did I like about it?
Gary Ross-Jordan is a new-to-me author but I was impressed with his writing style and the prose he used; I found this story intelligent, the characters compelling (even those I didn’t like) and liked the way he reflected all of human nature within these pages.
Primarily, I think that this story is a lovely gentle British comedy drama and I really enjoyed reading how the tail unfolded (pun definitely intended), how each character had their own chapters so that we could get to know them and the way that, throughout the story, we were given insights to help understand what it means to live on an island as part of an insular community. We are introduced to quite a few of the main protagonists of this story, the islanders, and I liked that some resonated with my own personality while others rubbed me up the wrong way; all were complex creations who felt very real and believable.
Surface Tensions wasn’t what I was expecting – it’s NOT a paranormal romance between a human and mermaid – it’s a story about the human condition, about how different people react to the unknown, what’s different or new, and it also highlights the comparisons between island life to that on the mainland. I didn’t know what to expect, where Mr Jordan would take us; I had no idea how the story would climax and who would come out on top.
Surface Tensions has made me chuckle out loud, made me rage with indignant frustration, put a soppy smile on my face as well as had me holding my breath, on the edge of my seat.
So, ummm, was there anything I disliked about it?
So, now I have to be honest and say why Surface Tensions had me dithering between a 3 or 4 star rating from me.
I am probably being rather mean to Mr Jordan and doing his book a dis-service but I need to explain, the dystopian type themed books are not my cup of tea. I don’t like reading stories where everything is as bad as it possibly can be because of the inevitable brutality of our species. Mob mentality really frightens me, when a group of people assemble because they’re emotional and angry about something, it only takes one act of violence to whip the crowd into a fury and I know that this viciousness, this sense of righteousness is just there barely below the surface – that’s the horror story right there! I find it very hard to read stories that contain scenes of this nature, and at times, Surface Tensions did make my heart and soul weep; it’s why it took me so long to read, I had to keeping putting it down, breathe and step away from the story. I need my fiction to take me away from the horrors of the human condition, perhaps I should be praising Mr Jordan for getting me so emotionally connected rather than penalising him…
So, basically what I’m saying is…
I did really enjoy this book. It’s got everything that I look for in a good story; adventure, great characters, action, humour and a sprinkling of romance.
I would recommend this book to fans of paranormal mysteries and dramas and I can confirm that the content (e.g. language, violence, sex, etc) is not horrific due to the lack of graphic blood or explicit sex scenes although I would suggest that the target audience is older owing to the tension and thriller aspects of the story.
So, has my review of SURFACE TENSIONS (ISLAND ADVENTURES #1) encouraged you to find out more? Just click on any of the links below to check out the book yourself or to find out more about the author. To see the other books I’ve read, take a look at my profile on Goodreads.
Oh, before I go, I just wanted to let you know that I am part of the Amazon UK Associates program. I don’t work for Amazon, I’m just a woman who loves to blog and share stuff but Amazon (and I) want make sure that you understand that the Amazon UK link that I’ve included in this post is “commercial” in nature.