Review: The Shift of the Tide by Jeffe Kennedy

Reviewed by Jen

As much as I’ve enjoyed this series –and I still do– this was probably the weakest installment for me at this point. This was primarily for two reasons: the hero and the heroine.

Wait. Wait. Stay with me. Let’s talk about the heroine first. This is Zynda’s book. She’s the Tala cousin to Ursula, Andi, and Ami. (If you don’t know who those women are, now seems like a good time to direct you to start this series at the beginning. I can’t imagine this sixth installment would be a satisfying standalone.) Anyway, Zynda has always been a character who has played her cards close to the vest, and in this book, her secrets are finally revealed. She is looking to meet up with the dragon freed in Dafne’s book in order to learn how to shift into a dragon herself. She believes this Final Form will give her the ability to guide her people into better fertility and healthier babies.

Her mission wasn’t my issue. It’s actually kind of interesting to see the story follow Zynda in her attempts to prove her worth to the dragon and undergo the trials required to meet her goal. I think my biggest issue with Zynda was in the Otherness of her. This is a woman who can shift into dozens of animals. It’s an important piece of who she is, but the time we spend with her as a dolphin or a pony or bird separated me from her character at times. It was hard to connect.

My issue with the hero is that he fell in love with Zynda off page. We’ve been aware of Marksal as a character since the first book in the series. He’s the head of Ursula’s Hawks. But really, we’ve had no hints to who he is at all. So when he shows up here, already in love with Zynda, it’s terribly jarring and feels like a cheat. Furthermore, even after reading this book, I don’t feel a strong sense of who he is. I can tell you that he was a great soldier with a big family and he will do anything for Zynda, but that’s about it. There is nothing wrong with him; I just feel like we glossed over him. The end result is that the romance felt unsatisfying. Not bad, but a bit anemic.

The book is much more about Zynda’s dragon quest and Marksal basically following her around the whole time as she went from one dangerous situation to another. For me, the best demonstration of his feelings came when Zynda became a hummingbird and he protected her with infinite care. But I wish there would have been more build. Heck, I wish there had been any build. And then, the ending felt even more rushed than usual. Some of the problems were resolved with the snap of the fingers, while others were left hanging for future books. There was no time to celebrate this HEA, because the story was over the second it started.

All of that said, this book isn’t bad. The writing is fantastic, along with the worldbuilding and backstories. Fans of the series need to read it, especially if you plan to pick up book seven. (I think it’s going to be about Kral’s ex-wife.) It also intersects with the novella in Amid the Winter snow, which turned me on to this series in the first place. It was cool to come full-circle there (but it also made me want MOAR ASH.)

Anyway, a mixed bag for me on this one, but I definitely plan to continue with the series.

Rating: C+/B-

Click to purchase: Amazon

The Shift of the Tide
by Jeffe Kennedy
Release Date: August 29, 2017


  1. I completely understand your thoughts on this one. The romance of this book isn’t as strong as the previous books. I did enjoy the way the overall story arc moved forward. I’m excited to see where the story goes from here. Great review.

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