Pastures New by Parker Foye (review)

Tagline: Horse shifter retires as a racing champion and is looking for something (or someone) to do…

Pastures New Book Cover

Title: Pastures New 
Author: Parker Foye
Genre:  Paranormal M/M Romance
Format:  Novella (15k words, 45 pages)

Series: Walk on Wild Side

Publisher: Dreamspinner (June 2016)

ISBN: 978-1-63477-492-5

Also available:  Walk on Wild Side Anthology

Rating:   star1 star1 half-star  (2.75 stars , I liked it o.k.)

Dreamspinner’s 2016 Daily Dose anthology includes 30 romantic male/male shifter stories released one a day during the month of June.

Synopsis: Horse shifter James retires after winning the British Open three times in his equine form, Illustrious Ruckus.  The shifter and his sister the jockey had enough of a run and probably could not continue without unveiling the family secret.  Retired from eventing, James is a bit lost in his new, post-racing life, but an attractive journalist visits and wants to see the prize stallion as well as the jockey.  Add in an ex-boyfriend who feels ill-used and a brother-in-law that wants him out of the house, and the horse shifter needs to sort out just how to relate to family, friends, and possible lovers in his post-racing life, and figure out whom to trust.

Review: The setting and story idea are very intriguing, and the contrast between living in such a public eye as an animal and then having to retire as a secret shifter is rather brilliant compared to typical shifter themes.  The overall placement of the characters, the parts they played in the story and the eventual outcome were potentially very interesting. The English setting was fine, although not particularly unique or compelling (in other words, except for the background of event racing, it really could have just as easily been in Canada, the U.S., or Australia, etc.).

Overall, this one didn’t work too well for me, and I think mainly I just didn’t connect with James, the main protagonist. Frankly, about half-way through, I was almost as sympathetic to the villain in the piece as to the hero.  The family situation seemed awkward, and it was going through a transition, but it also didn’t particularly add to anything but perhaps some more conflicting emotions.

Recommended for fans of:  Horse shifters, men transitioning from a brilliant career to a more quiet life, and quick attraction to one who may or may not be the right kind of man.

Sizzle:
Heat: fire – just a tiny bit of explicit heat that punctuates the story (and plenty of fade to black)
Passion: heart  heart – the chemistry between the two potential lovers seemed real but not deep
Genre:  Adult Romance
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