It’s two for one night–second book review of the evening!
I admit that I came to These Boots Are Made for Butt-Kickin’ by Kalan Chapman Lloyd quite prepared to enjoy it because I liked the first book in the series, Home Is Where Your Boots Are.
It began well enough:
“I had always wanted to kill him. So I shot him. Shot him good. I hit my mark dead-on.”
This is a pretty good hook, unfortunately it’s a description of an event from the last novel and introduces a chapter pretty much devoted to recapping the events of the first novel.
So, that’s done. Next, we’re introduced to Lilly the lawyer’s first case of the book. Her client is Matt, a guy who drop-kicked a bunny while hunting. A video was taken and uploaded to YouTube. He’s evidently being sued by PETA. Lilly counters by saying: “I figured I’d file a motion to dismiss tomorrow based on idiocy.” Lilly repeatedly refers to the incident as “dumb” and indicates that Matt is being victimized.
Okay. Well, this is pretty much where an author should do some research because the action is actually a Felony in the fair state of Oklahoma with a fine up to $5000 or imprisonment in a county jail for up to one year, or imprisonment in a state penitentiary for up to 5 years. All 50 states now have animal cruelty laws and it’s easy to check it out via google. Oklahoma’s covers domesticated as well as wild animals.
Obviously this first case is just for anecdotal purposes and to bring about the introduction of Alexis, an old friend of Spence the Yankee. The posse, as Lilly and her friends are called, want to run Alexis out of town because she’s pretty, blonde, and friendly with Spence. There seems to be no other reason evident.
A third of the story passes before the murder occurs that allows this book to fall into the murder mystery genre. That’s just far too long.
Throughout the book there is a lot conversational writing, some of which is amusing, but in the version I read, which I believe to be the final one, there were grammatical errors, missing punctuation, unintentionally amusing phrases for the smartass in me (“she was pregnant with a broken arm”), and situations in which a character either telephones or enters a room and the reader has no idea who it is. In the case with the phone call, the reader doesn’t find out the identity until the next chapter. For me, a proofreader/tech editor by day, this sloppiness totally detracted from the story and I found myself getting more than a little annoyed by errors that could have been corrected by an editor/proofreader.
Inconsistencies also abounded. The above-mentioned Matt the bunny-killer case is scheduled for Thursday, but then the other attorney at the end of the chapter says: I’ll see you Friday. And, then the hearing is on Friday instead of the aforementioned Thursday.
Unfortunately, these are just a few examples. There are many.
Lilly gets hurt–a lot. Her injuries are listed and asked about by several characters many, many times throughout the book. I think that this is supposed to be funny, but by the end it’s just one of those things that has you banging your head on a desk. The same goes for the introduction of the title action midway through. First one character mentions that Lilly is getting her butt kicked and then another and then it’s “handed your ass” and this becomes a “thing” throughout until the end.
Just writing this up makes me feel bad. I can’t recommend this book and I’m not even sure what kind of rating I can give it in good conscience.
Which makes me think that maybe I should regroup and try to tell you what’s good about the book. The conversational style is good; there are some amusing observations.
I received this book through NetGalley for an honest review.
From Amazon: These Boots Are Made for Butt Kickin’