Hoofin' It by RJ Blain Mini Review 1 ot 5 stars Genre: Supernatural Romantic(?) Comedy Positives: Fun cover, title and blurb is where it ends. I want my 99p back. Negatives: - The most mind-numblingly repetitive writing I’ve ever experienced. - Everything is told and nothing shown. - Sex trafficking plot in a comedy book (hilarious…) - Alpaca is not a sidekick! - All characters are the same and all are annoying. - Did I mention it’s repetitive?
Did Not Finish,  Mini Reviews

Mini Review | Hoofin’ It by R. J. Blain

đź’€ DNF – What’s funnier than a sex trafficking plot in a comedy book? Top marks for book title, cover and blurb but a fail for execution.

Format: Kindle

Read: February 2023

I really wanted this to be good – I saw it for 99p in the BookBub email list and I could not resist the title, cover, and blurb! I thought it was a high chance of being crap but maybe in a good way. Plus such a high star rating on Goodreads!

I really should read the samples on Kindle before I click buy!

It had potential but all the fun elements are severely let down by incredibly dull and repetitive writing – I have never read anything this repetitive before, it is mind-numbing – and frankly baffling plot choices in what is meant to be COMEDY book (what is more hilarious than… er… sex trafficking?).

I found the writing so boring. This author is from the “tell don’t show” school of writing. Nothing is ever demonstrated, we just get told. Important scenes and events happen off-scene and we just hear about them after the fact. What we do get is a lot of dialogue.. which is also boring and every single character I met, in the 42% I got through of this book, sounded exactly the same and had the same “snarky” sense of humour.

It is difficult to talk about characters because essentially everyone is the same with maybe a slightly tweaked “quirk.” Main Character – Shane – is on leave from being a cop because he has lost an eye (you will hear endlessly about how he lost that eye every time he comes into contact with a new character). He is conscientious and nice, too nice, but also very snarky (sigh). He is meant to be 27 but he sounds and acts like he is 17. He has very quirky embarrassing parents who are both lycanthropes; they have no boundaries and talk about sex a lot. All very cringey tropes, but I could have rolled with it if it had been well written.

Shane is a virgin and much is made of this early in the novel as an important character trait – his reasons for remaining a virgin are painted as noble. Then Shane just out of the blue loses his virginity in a very confusing, lacklustre scene both in the way it was written with a complete fade to black (I genuinely had to re-read those pages to work out if they did in fact have sex), and the entire context for the scene. He finds “Sally” working in a sex club during a rescue attempt, they are both under the influence of sex demons (told this every other paragraph which alone was driving me insane by this point) and after he helps her use a phone they just do it… just like that. Then they’re both totally cool about it, no big deal. Not that they were both essentially drugged so could not consent, not that she is a literal sex trafficking victim! FBI agent or not… what happened to her happened! Never mind that Shane losing his virginity should have been a major moment given all the talking about it I had to endure for chapters before! This was the point when I decided I’m wasting my time hoping this would get better!

Oh and that exciting blurb that promises an alpaca sidekick? Not true – she’s not a sidekick, she is also only an alpaca for 20% of the book! Then we get into a plot about sex trafficking (seriously? In a comedy book?) and many uncomfortable jokes about his parents selling him as a “sex slave” to further their investigation. It could have just been a kidnapping… why make it sex trafficking?!

I also have to say that the fact that Shane’s parents are Cops and all their Cop friends we meet was pretty uncomfortable to read in 2023, given all the news about US police… they genuinely all sound like awful police officers to me who just do whatever they want without a care for any consequences, and its meant to be, like, cute or something?

Basically, this book is just not funny. I thought it had potential at the start but then any generosity I had towards the attempts at humour in this book where beaten out of me by the repetitive writing and annoying characters.

If you did want to read it… Hoofin’ It on Amazon

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