Myla Jackson’s Boots and Bareback: One of the Worst Books I’ve Ever Suffered Through

Boots and Bareback (Ugly Stick Saloon)

Boots and Bareback (Book 3 in the Ugly Stick Saloon series)

Written by Myla Jackson and published by Samhain Publishing Ltd., Boots and Bareback is a 9 chapter novella, and remarkably one of the worst books I have ever read.

My Rating 0 stars out of 5

Premise

The horse that Isabella Severs raised has been taken by her ex-fiance to be auctioned. Isabella is currently employed as a waitress at the Ugly Stick Saloon, so she can’t afford to buy back her horse, but luckily an older gentleman by the name of Jonathan O’Brien has the perfect proposition: strip at one of his four sons’ bachelor party, and he’ll give her enough coin to rescue her trusted steed, Sundance, from the auction block…because apparently there’s just no other way to go about doing this.

As you can see, the plot is utterly ridiculous. I knew this and yet I still read this book because I had never read a book by Myla Jackson and I wanted to experience her writing. I felt this book would be a good introduction to Jackson’s work, but I was wrong…so wrong.

Characters

The O’Brien brothers, Gabe (the eldest), Tanner (the second-born), and Sean (the middle-child) are all well-off ranchers. Now that their youngest brother has decided to get married their father, Jonathan, would like them to do the same. Other than the fact that they’re all attractive, horny guys, I haven’t much to say about them because I didn’t learn much about them from this book. They all find Isabella incredibly attractive…and that’s about it. Isabella is an unlikeable character; impetuous, whiny, and even rude. Through early exposition we learn that at some point each of the 3 brothers had asked Isabella out, but she rejected them all. Not only has Isabella expressed disinterest in dating Gabe, Tanner, and Sean, but also a disinterest and fear of stripping, so I was confused when Isabella had sex with one of the brothers in a public place just a couple pages into chapter 2. How did this character go from not wanting anything to do with the brothers one minute, to having sex with one of the brothers after barely having a conversation with him the next? I didn’t know where Jackson was going with Isabella because 16-19 pages of exposition described the character one way, but the character’s impulsive actions depicted her another way.

Final Thoughts

As I’ve mentioned, this book’s plot is absolute nonsense. Am I to believe that stripping was the only thing that lecherous old man could come up with to bring Isabella closer to his sons? I also never understood how Isabella could immediately decide to do something she was shown to strongly oppose in the beginning of the book. I realize she loved her horse, but I would’ve liked to see her explore other options to get him back. Overall I thought this book was terrible, filled with characters void of personality and lackluster dialogue. The fact that this is a 9 chapter novella is irrelevant. I’ve read countless novellas that had great plots and character development, so the book’s short length shouldn’t be the cause of this rushed mess of a book. Reading Boots and Bareback killed any desire I had to read other books by Myla Jackson, so save yourself some money and time by not reading it.

If you’ve read this book, or would like to suggest another book by Myla Jackson, please leave a comment below.

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