Review: Trailer Park Fae by Lilith Saintcrow

Posted June 22, 2015 by Carmel in Carmel, Reviews, Urban Fantasy / 17 Comments

Review: Trailer Park Fae by Lilith Saintcrow
Trailer Park Fae by Lilith Saintcrow
Series: Gallow and Ragged #1
Published by Orbit
Published on: June 23, 2015
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 320
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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New York Times bestselling author Lilith Saintcrow returns to dark fantasy with a new series where the faery world inhabits diners, dive bars and trailer parks.

Jeremiah Gallow is just another construction worker, and that's the way he likes it. He's left his past behind, but some things cannot be erased. Like the tattoos on his arms that transform into a weapon, or that he was once closer to the Queen of Summer than any half-human should be. Now the half-sidhe all in Summer once feared is dragged back into the world of enchantment, danger, and fickle fae - by a woman who looks uncannily like his dead wife. Her name is Robin, and her secrets are more than enough to get them both killed. A plague has come, the fullborn-fae are dying, and the dark answer to Summer's Court is breaking loose.

Be afraid, for Unwinter is riding...

Warning ARC review Twisted

Let me just start out by saying that this book wasn’t what I expected. Dark Urban Fantasy—most definitely, but the title and blurb led me to believe that there would also be a generous helping of humour, or snark which there wasn’t. The male protagonist lives in a trailer park, and he & Robin eat a meal at a diner; however that’s pretty much the full extent of this story’s ghetto vibe. Lilith Saintcrow’s writing style was heavy on the Fae court speak, and the plot was rather humdrum until the halfway mark. Still, I enjoyed it once the ball got rolling.

The author’s prose was the largest hurdle for me having not read anything by her before. I wasn’t deterred by the Fae politics or by the formal discourse because both go hand-in-hand whenever the Sidhe are involved. My problem was with the amount of it; there was no break in the flowery words whether it was the dialogue, descriptions, or mortal exchanges. It made the plot threads difficult to spot because I was too busy trying to figure out what the heck Saintcrow was trying to convey, and the fact that nothing really happened until page 160 made it worse.

The remainder of my review will focus on what happened after the pre-excitement hump considering that it was the second half that merited the four star rating. The novel was actually shockingly uncomplicated once all of the key characters, and their motivations were identified. The twists were carried out nicely, and the author nailed the ambiguity of Fae word play, as well as their creepy / magical natures. The Fair Folk were pretty standard as far as their mythology goes, so once the language was no longer an obstacle, I was able to find my bearings.

I liked Jeremy; he had an interesting back story, and there was way more to him than his construction worker facade. Former Armormaster, and ex-lover of Summer who gave it all up for a mortal woman, and refuses to serve any court (anti-hero FTW!). Robin did everything right; she set off to save a human boy, mostly had Gallow’s back, and she’s powerful, but I just couldn’t bring myself to her. Also, I’m hoping the romance doesn’t pan out because, well… spoiler. Puck Goodfellow was the quasiessential mischievous Fae, and the catalyst of many things I suspect. Yup, I will be reading book 2.

TRAILER PARK FAE required a bit of patience, but I’m glad that I stuck it out.

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Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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17 responses to “Review: Trailer Park Fae by Lilith Saintcrow

  1. Great review, Carmel! I thought this was going to be a a dark urban fantasy in the vein of something more like Patricia Briggs, so I’m glad I read your review first because I would have been disappointed, methinks. I’m glad to hear the book got better for you in the second half, but as I said, glad I read your review because although I can handle Fae/Sidhe and their court stuff in small doses, I don’t go for novels where that’s a big part of it (or I end up not enjoying them as much).


  2. Margaret  

    I always warn people that Saintcrow’s language takes a while to get used to. I binge-read most of the Jill Kismet series and by the second book I got in the groove and didn’t even notice. Then I picked up the last book in the series a year later and was like “why is she making up words?” I’ve had the same experience every time I’ve read her.

    I’m starting Trailer Park Fae tonight.

  3. I have tried and tried and tried to like Lilith Saintcrow’s writing style and have never been able to. But this gorgeous cover had me contemplating giving it one last shot but it definitely gives off the wrong vibe for what actually happens. Damn. Maybe Mr. Rhi would be interested in it but without humor, I don’t think he could stick with it either. Thanks for a great review Carmel.
    Rhianna recently posted…Review: Dying to Date by Victoria Davies

  4. I saw this and instantly thought of White Trash Zombie series by Diana Rowland. Between the cover (done by the same artist) and the title, that is the first thing that pops into my mind. It sounds like it is nothing like it. I’m glad to hear that it was still good. I’ve read two other series by Saintcrow and really liked them. I’m hoping to get this one on audio.
    Melanie recently posted…Early Review: Misery’s Way by J.C. Daniels

  5. I was so curious about this one. I confess that when it’s about faes I’m really curious so it’s normal. I had it yesterday so now I need to read it. curious to see if I feel the same way. thanks for the review!

  6. I have been so eager to read this book (I’m loving that cover!) and my thoughts were the same as yours in that this would be a dark UF with humour, I’m a little disappointed that this was missing. I’m pleased to hear things picked up around the half way mark; I am a big fan of the fae so I’m still quite keen to read this book.

    A great review Carmel! Sharon – Obsession with Books
    Sharon – Obsession with Books recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday – Dark Heart of Magic by Jennifer Estep and Unspoken by C.C. Hunter