Book – A Tangle of Secrets (The Town of Superstition #4)
Author – R.G. Thomas
Star rating - ★★★★☆
No. of Pages – 277
Cover – Perfect!
POV – 3rd person, one character
Would I read it again – Yes
Genre – LGBT, Young Adult, Adventure, Coming-of-Age
** I WAS GIVEN THIS BOOK FOR MY READING PLEASURE **
Reviewed for Divine Magazine
This story is a difficult one to review, because it's mostly quite a negative story – full of negative emotions, chaos and a lot of bad teen experiences happening to a teenager – but on the other hand, there are some shining moments of joy and relief that match the previous books. For me, this is the first book that felt really long and a hard slog to work through. This was mostly due to the negative experiences and emotions that took over the majority of the book. It made it hard to be stuck in for so many hours at a time. I had to put the book down a few times, just to get a little relief from the intense teen hormones causing so much negativity.
The story offers a few new supernatural aspects than before: revisiting the wizard heritage, introducing ghosts, and changelings. However, it felt that a lot of magical stuff was going on at one time and it made it harder to follow from one sub-plot to another. Despite them all being interlinked with each other, the various sub-plots were often abandoned and not fully explored to my liking, because the story focused too much on Thaddeus' experiences in high school and his emotions. I wanted him to have an adventure, but he didn't. He watched Teofil and his siblings go off on adventures, investigating things without him, off page, while Thaddeus dealt with teen drama. I would have liked to have had a dual POV or split POV so that we could follow Teofil on his journey and see what he was experiencing.
I found the new characters interesting, and there was no shortage of suspects for who Logan, Lucius and his thugs might be pretending to be. The intrigue was high, the chaos full scale, and there was plenty of emotional intensity. I loved when Teofil and Thaddeus were alone together, but when other people were there, the chemistry was ruined and Thaddeus began acting like a stranger. It was only when they were together that he was the same old Thaddeus that I've grown to love throughout the series. I was a little disappointed at the distance Teofil put between them, but was prepared for that after reading the blurb. All of this came together to really show the dramatic change in Thaddeus and add another layer to the plot that helped explain all of the negativity and bad experiences as being related to his mood and vice versa.
In the end, the answers given settled some of the issues I'd had and made sense of them, questions were answered and plots were resolved. It just felt like it took a long time to get there. Overall, it was a book of two halves. It really did resolve the overall plot, with an ending that I could buy, while also leaving the possibility of more in the future, but it was a tough read, emotionally. I found myself losing interest at points, just because there was so much negativity all clumped together. I could have used a break from the onslaught of emotional torment, but I did like that it answered a lot of questions and finished off the story well. I could happily read more in this series in the future, and if that isn't in the cards, then that's okay with me too, because this one offered a solution and ending that sits well with me. I'll definitely be buying these books in paperback, just as soon as I can.
““It hasn't been easy for you, has it?” Thaddeus asked.
His father shrugged. “Not always, no. But I had a great motivation to do the right thing.”
“What was that?”
“Keeping you alive.””