The third in the Weather Warden series about weather controlling Joanne Balwin.
Publication year: 2005
Publisher: Audible Inc.
Narrator: Dina Perlman
Running Time: 9 hours, 34 minutes
The former Weather Warden Joanne Baldwin and her Djinn lover David are trying to sort out the mess they were left with in the previous book. The world’s most powerful Djinn, Jonathan, is in the hands of a petulant teenage boy, Kevin, and they are wrecking havoc. They are in Las Vegas and Jonathan is keep the city off limits from Wardens and the other Djinn. Unfortunately, he’s doing it by manipulating weather and creating earthquakes. Jo and David have been driving around Las Vegas for a few weeks trying to get in but without any success. Kevin has also stolen the powers of Lewis who is one of Jo’s oldest friends and is now near death because of the power loss.
However, the Weather Wardens want Jo to back off. She really has no choice but to agree and the Wardens even take away David’s bottle from her. Then, one of Jo’s friends betrays her horribly. She’s shot and transported to Las Vegas where she’s resuscitated back to life. That’s pretty crappy way to get into the city but things turn only to worse when she finds out that another group (of old men) is really interested in her: the Ma’at are a group who are convinced that the Wardens are corrupt and it’s now up to them to start controlling not only the weather but the Djinn as well.
There’s an additional story which starts as a side plot when Joanne thinks back on one of her earlier jobs six years ago. She was sent to Las Vegas to investigate a fellow Warden who was suspected of misusing his powers. She thought that it would be an easy job but of course, it wasn’t. First, the male Warden tries to sidetrack her by seducing her and when that doesn’t work, he simply won’t see her. That didn’t stop Jo, of course. This story first ties up thematically with the rest of the book; it shows how a corrupted Warden works and shows also that Jo is familiar with the concept of less than innocent Wardens. The story turns really dark, later, and ties in with the main plot, too. I wasn’t really thrilled with some of the things that happened in it.
I really like Jo and David. They’re a good couple despite the fact that they still have the annoying habit of not telling important things to each other. They say things like “Trust me” and then they do things that the other person really should have been told about beforehand. Also, David does something which really, really should have been discussed beforehand!
Jo is a stubborn and contrary person. Luckily for her, she tends to be right most of the time. Considering all of the hard and awful stuff Jo goes through, she has to be tough, though. People around her seem have the tendency to betray her and she can’t really trust even David.
I’ve gotten used to David as the unshakably loyal lover. Of course, when Jo has David’s bottle, he can’t be anything else since a Djinn has to obey his or her owner. And of course, when you start to think about that power dynamic, it is, or can be, horrible. So much power of the one you love. And yet, can you trust anyone else with your lover’s bottle? Would you want to? Jo and David are really sweet together so I couldn’t see that Jo would mistreat her power. However, she is uncomfortable with it and so are some of the other characters around them.
Most of the characters from the previous books return, even one whom I didn’t expect to see anymore. I was delighted and horrified by the character’s transformation. Jo’s old friend and crush Lewis has always seem to be a really good guy but here we find out that he has a real bad side, too. On the other hand, Jo’s sort-of enemy and a hard ass Warden Marion Bearheart is revealed to have a surprising past which made her a more sympathetic character. We’re also introduced to a lot of new characters. Most of them seem to be people who believe they are doing good but aren’t too squeamish about their methods. I tend to like them, because they can be more complex than other villains, not to mention having redemption potential.
The pace is very fast and Jo doesn’t really get a breather at all.
Oh, and once again, lots of stuff is unresolved at the end as usual for a series with a continuous storyline. I’m dying to know what happens to David and the others next!
I really enjoyed Perlman’s reading. For me, her voice just clicked with Joanne’s inner voice, somehow. She reads often with a chatty style which is perfect for the writing style for Joanne’s thoughts. She doesn’t really do different voices.