ARC Review/Live Blogging – Ta Weezo’s Blues by Layla Dorine

Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Ta Weezo’s Blues by Layla Dorine

Rating: 3/5

Published: 24th December 2018 by Nine Star Press

Genre: LGBTQ Romance/Erotica

Recommended Age: 18+ (sexual content)

Page Count: 86 pages (Kindle)

Synopsis (taken from Amazon):

Sabre never had any intentions of becoming the teacher’s pet. In fact, most of his school years have been spent trying to avoid attention. The scar that mars his cheek has made him wary of strangers, their questions and prying eyes leave him feeling exposed in ways he’s uncomfortable with. Accustomed to blending in, he lurks around the shadows in the back of classrooms, turning in exemplary work but rarely taking part in discussions.

Professor Locklear’s Native lit class is different though. Sabre’s interest in the subject matter, coupled with a dedicated scholar’s need to turn in the best work possible, leads him to seek out a more advanced reading list, much to the delight of Professor Locklear. When he comes across Sabre reading material beyond even the advanced list, Professor Locklear invites on a fieldtrip to a nearby village. Along the way he learns more than just the knowledge contained in the books. He learns about trust and discovers that there are others out there just like him— shapeshifters.

What he believed was an individual anomaly turns out to be something beyond legend and lore, a whole different culture he’d never known existed. The only way he can move forward is to let his shields down long enough to trust the man whose conversations he’s come to enjoy, but to do that, he’ll have to stop distancing himself from everyone.

Okay, so I received an eARC of this book on NetGalley and I’m writing this review as I read, hence the words ‘live nothing’s in the title. I’m 40% in and I have a lot to say so far, so here goes! Please do remenber, these are my thoughts and opinions and I’m starting with a few negative points, but will be (hopefully) mainly focusing on the positive ones afterwards!

Firestly, the title. Ta Weezo’s Blues – I sincerely hope that this title is explained at some point. I expected a character called Ta Weezo, but that hasn’t happened so far, so I’m confused as to what it actually means and what relevance it has to the book, hmmmmm…

Secondly – character names. I love all of the characters so far but ‘Sabre‘,’Drax‘, ‘Ben Thunder Hawk‘ and ‘Professor Begay‘ aren’t the most appealing names when reading and trying to imagine an actual, relatively normal person in a current timeline. To me, this just screams ‘just watched a superhero movie and found a random hero name generator’ and I don’t like it. The characters personalities do make up for it, but even so, it’s quite off-putting and distracting for me personally. 

I’m 38% in and although I like Sabre, I feel his woe-is-me behaviour is a little more for show than anything. I get that he is self conscious of his scar, however I feel like it is a little extreme. I know/have known a lot of people with permanent scarring on their face that was through no fault of their own and I haven’t known anyone to behave even slightly similarly. I would understand more it it was a massive deformity, but a scar. I feel that could’ve been done better.

Also, the chapters. One chapter was like 25% of the book and I feel like it could’ve been spaced out a little better, even though it is a very short story.

HOWEVER, I love Drax and can’t wait to read more about him, especially in the story circle that’s starting in the next paragraph! I would like to know his age and what got him interested in asking  Sabre on a date, as Sabre is his student. I hope he can help Sabre overcome his many issues and lead him on a path to recovery that I feel he needs,as well as shower him with all of the love and affection because he is a sweet, shy little bean. It’s nice to see that he made a friend in Ben and that he didn’t judge him – but where was his reaction to Ben seeing his scar? Did he even see it?

Sabre’s love for literature resonates with me personally, and I love that Drax is helping him stop isolating himself through something Sabre loved so mucg. I also feel the author put a few of her favourite books in there as a reference, so I have written a little list and will be checking them out soon! 

I’m off to read some more, next update for this review will be below!

I thoroughly enjoyed Grace’s story about the woman that could shapeshift into a bobcat, and I hope it’ll be a stepping stone to Sabre regaining some of his confidence. I feel as though this story will be something for him and Drax to reflect on at some point in the book. 

Okay, Grace is called Grace Windtalker. Another legitimate name. It’s starting to irritate me. Sighs. I really didn’t want that to happen. 

All of a sudden there are shapeshifters? I laughed out loud. This book was a solid 4 stars up until this point. Now it’s a 2.5. I just feel like this is more a parody, the writing doesn’t introduce any kind of shapeshifting until this point. And even better, Sabre is a ferret, Windtalker is a fox and Thunder Hawk is a bear. WHAT. I suppose that explains the ferret on the front cover. 

I’m going to continue reading but I can’t help the temptation to DNF. I’ve never not finished a book I’ve started. Sighs. 

OKAY SO Drax kissed Sabre and I’m happy about that. Hopefully this is where it gets good again. Please, please let there be little mention of shareholding. It doesn’t fit with the story. The kiss escalated quickly. Sabre was fangirling over the story circle and all of a sudden Drax is missing him and INSTANT MOANING. I like where this is going, but surely Sabre would be too shy to kiss back so passionately so soon after getting to know Drax? But I’m so into this teacher/student pairing right now I don’t even care. DAAAAAAMN SABRE I DIDN’T KNOW YOU HAD IT IN YOU.

They’re going to go on a date, and there’s been no more shapeshifter talk in the last few pages, so I’m happy so far. Woo! Wow, this book is getting my feelings hot and cold and I don’t even know if it’s a good thing. 

Angry talk about genocide in books. We are beginning to learn a little more about Drax and I like it! A positive message buried 60% into this book. Also, this post is getting long so I should probably write less. Sorry guys! 

70% in and they’re finally on a date. Now comes the smut I’ve been waiting for this whole time, woooooo!!!

… And Sabre shapeshifted in bed the next morning. I don’t even understand why this shapeshifting is a thing? I’m really confused. 

Now I feel bad. Sabre had a really tough time growing up and the scar on his face was from something quite bad and I FEEL AWFUL. I take back what I said. I LOVE HIM. 

I just finished the book. I feel like all the smut was saved for the end and was super rushed. We didn’t see much of the growth once they’d become intimate and officially decided to be in a relationship. We also had no explanation about the shapeshifting. But we do find out that Ta Weezo is a nickname Drax gives to Sabre! Yeah go clarification! All in all, I’m confused and doing know what to make of this book. I love it but also hate it. A 3 star for me, and I hope there’s a second book that will give this book a lot more clarity. I would re-read this, but it’s alright for a quick read (I read this in around an hour and a half) for something that satisfied the need to read a little smut, although be prepared to wait for the smut. I’ll give one of the authors other books a go too, as one book can be awful but another story by the same person can be brilliant. 

I hope you all enjoyed this and I’ll be posting more reviews soon!

Steph xx

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