Threadbare Gypsy Souls (A.O. Chika’s Review)


Title: Threadbare Gypsy Souls
Author: T.A. Chase
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Release Date: October 25,2016
Genre(s): Paranormal Romance
Page Count: 142
Reviewed by: A.O. Chika
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 2.6 stars out of 5
Blurb:

Nash Rhodes roars into Fallen Creek one day, and nothing is ever the same again.

Nash Rhodes is trying to find his path in life, after leaving Nashville and his motorcycle gang in the dust. Fallen Creek, Wyoming, isn’t where he plans on spending the rest of his life, but it’s a nice place to rest for a while and take stock of things so far. Yet Nash has secrets he doesn’t want to share with anyone, especially not a taciturn, scarred cowboy.

Cullen O’Murphy is a lone wolf, and he’s been fighting a losing battle against the local shifter pack. He doesn’t want to become part of their pack, knowing what they do for a living. Oh, he’s not afraid. Cullen knows he can defeat the Alpha, but Cullen doesn’t want to lead. He simply wishes to be left alone.

One night, he goes for a drink at The Watering Hole, a local bar, and he meets Nash. The lust is combustible, yet both men are leery about trusting the other with all their secrets.

Unfortunately, neither one might have a choice as circumstances spiral out of their control.

Publisher’s Note: This book has previously been released elsewhere. It has been revised and re-edited for re-release with Pride Publishing.

This is my first book from this author but the blurb was interesting so I decided to read it. It started out nicely and a few pages in I was already in love with Nash. Cullen seemed like the sexy, mysterious type so continued reading it even though there were parts when I thought, ‘Why isn’t he doing anything?

You see, I ignored the part of the blurb that said this book has been released before, and I really should have read the Goodreads review before reading this book, because if I had done that, I would be less disappointed and frustrated. This book has so much potential, like Nash being half shifter, like the conflict between his old gang, like the fucking fae that was introduced at the end of the book, like Nash pretending not to know what Cullen was the whole time and creating false suspense that hit me like a punch to the nuts… (It wasn’t a good feeling) I felt cheated.

I’m going to refer to ZenHarley’s Review of the previous version of Threadbare Gypsy Souls because her review still stands.

This is where some of the logic fails start to creep in. It’s mentioned quite a few times that Cullen could easily defeat Robinson if he wanted to (apparently Cullen’s an Alpha, too — more on that later) but just doesn’t want the hassle of inheriting Robinson’s dysfunctional pack. And despite the fact that a dear friend of his died from meth abuse, he turns a blind eye to the drug manufacturing and dealing next door, since hey, not his problem. And Cullen — this big, strong Alpha wolf — somehow allows Robinson’s goons to beat him up. Repeatedly. To the point that he carries scars on his face from all the fights

Nash is on the run from his former position as sergeant at arms of a biker gang. There are several reasons given for why he left the gang, (one involving a blond-haired, blue-eyed someone who was never mentioned again.) The real story is held until the Big Reveal, but is pretty obvious from the get-go. Nash is also a closet submissive, and enjoys having Cullen order him around. The poor guy also spends the entire book injured in one fashion or another.

Cullen and Nash fall in love in about a week. It’s not strictly “fated mates” but pretty darn close, at least from Cullen’s perspective. They boink like bunnies, with Nash enjoying Cullen’s bossiness, and Nash’s new-found ability to be more submissive in bed. The sex scenes are OK, but I felt they were lacking in romance. I just never got a sense of the two of them as more than guys who liked to sleep together, with a touch of “comrades in arms” thrown in later on.

My point exactly! There were so many holes in this book I don’t know where to start from.

  1. From the beginning of the book up until 60% ish Nash was ignorant about werewolves. He seemed genuinely ignorant of Cullen being an alpha, he asked questions such as ‘what are they called packs instead of gangs?‘ When the fucking fae called Cullen a Lone wolf, he took that to mean Cullen was the kind of guy who preferred solitude, true but not the point. Now I was so excited to see how he would react when Cullen reveals what he is, and what do I get? A phone call from his gang and Nash telling Cullen that he knows what he is AND that he is also a shifter, albeit half human but once again not the point. NOPE, NOPE, NOPE.
  2. As ZenHarley said in her review, Cullen’s backstory and behaviour didn’t match up, I mean, if I lost a dear friends to drugs nothing in this world would stop be from killing Robinson, I would not half-ass it by saying it’s none of my business, and that I could always defeat Robinson whenever I want. No! You would be holding me back lest I dye him red!
  3. Now let’s talk about the fucking fae that was revealed at 90%1sh of the book (Also when I stopped reading because I couldn’t deal anymore.) Nothing pissed me off as “I’m a fae, Cullen.NOTHING! I felt so cheated because up until then Jeanette was a normal middle aged woman, sure she looked like she had a secret but I didn’t expect a curveball this late in the book with no warning whatsoever, instead I got a page of Jeanette explaining who knows what AND mentioning that Nash has a bit of fae blood.
  4. Who the guy with blond hair and blue eyes is, I would never know, maybe it was explained but after the fae business I gave up.

The only way to summarize this is to quote Zen again,

The plot is full of dropped threads, disappearing characters, lucky coincidences, stupid bad guys, really paranoid townspeople, and an otherworldly deus ex machina that made me reach for a drink.

I could have overlooked almost all of this, except for one last issue: I felt like I was being manipulated by the author’s selective release of information. It’s one thing to protect the Big Reveal with a red herring or three — heck, we’d lose the whole mystery genre otherwise — but you shouldn’t put your readers in someone’s head and then purposely edit what they see in order to maintain the mystery. It’s a trust issue: as readers, we should be able to trust that if we’re told a character is thinking about pink elephants during a scene, we don’t find out later that he was actually thinking about green dingos. This comes up in the Big Reveal and was extremely aggravating.

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Galley copy of THREADBARE GYPSY SOULS provided by PRIDE PUBLISHING in exchange of an honest review.

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LGBTQIA Book blogger, Poet, Author, Graphic designer and secretly the King of a faraway kingdom. Don’t ask where it is, if i told you, i’ll have to kill you.

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