The biggest problem with short stories / novellas is that some of them feels undeveloped because of the length limitation. Unfortunately, Mell Eight’s upcoming Elemental Ride — it is part of LT3P’s Roughhouse Raiders but I think can be read as stand-alone — is one of them.
Eight has three plots that I thought brimming with potential. However, because it only clocks in around 21k, I felt like none of them were deeply explored.
First we have a Mayor (of some unnamed city; it isn’t clear where) wanting to fix up the bad parts of his city by cleaning up the gangs. One of our MCs, Rawley, is a member of Elementalist Motorcycle Chapter, and the gang has been monitored by the cops. Then one of the ex-member of Rawley’s motorcycle gang turns up dead.
Then we have the second plot, of urban fantasy element, because apparently Elementalist club means accepting bikers with elemental sprites under their skin. Elemental what? Elemental sprite. See, this is the world where humans allowed sprites to live in a symbiotic relationship by giving sprites an access to their body, and the humans can use the sprites’ power.
On top of that, we have a love interest for Rawley, who apparently has not one, not two, but four separate personalities.
I would be a happy reader if the story focused on one plot — love story with a person who has separate personalities sounds unique and refreshing, right? I can deal without the added urban fantasy element or the mystery. Instead, I thought the story was rather all over the place, and I was left unsatisfied 😦
I gave extra stars for the idea — even if the execution was lacking — and that gorgeous cover (Natasha Snow’s work, I presume)?
The ARC is provided by the publisher via Netgalley for an exchange of fair and honest review. No high rating is required for any ARC received.
Title: Elemental Ride
Author: Mell Eight
Series: Roughhouse Raiders (but can be read as stand-alone)
Genre: MM Urban Fantasy
Length: 21,000 words
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Release Date: November 9, 2016