A MelanieM Review: Thrall by Avon Gale and Roan Parrish


Rating: 1.5 stars out of 5

Dating Sucks & Love Bites 

Happy couple Mina Murray and Lucy Westenra have begun to garner national attention for their quirky New Orleans true-crime podcast, Shadowcast. When Lucy’s brother Harker disappears while researching the popular new dating app Thrall, they’re thrown into a real-life mystery. Aided by their social media expert, Arthur, and Harker’s professor, Van Helsing, they follow the trail, hoping to find Harker before it’s too late.

When their investigation crosses the path of a possible serial killer, the line between fantasy and reality begins to blur. And as they race against the app’s countdown clock, so does the line between friendship and love. What starts as a flirtatious rivalry between computer-savvy Arthur and techno-averse Van Helsing becomes much more, and Mina and Lucy’s relationship is tested in the fires of social media.

As they get down to the wire, the group discovers that nothing on their screens is as it seems—including their enemy.


Well, what a surprising review to write.  I will say upfront that this story came back to me after another reviewer who  simply could not get through 11 percent of it.  Looking at the authors (two favorites of mine) and the story synopsis, I decided to read it.  Their take on Bram Stoker’s Dracula sounded interesting and I’m always up for a new release from them.

Wow, just wow.  I’m beyond astonished.

Whatever interesting themes or storyline these authors may have had is lost in a (at least for two readers here) totally indigestible format.   Whether you are scrambling to gather facts and a storyline through a series of Twitter feeds to the Podcasts of Mina and Lucy or alternating Diary excerpts, the disjointed presentation on whole just loses the reader and, in fact the characters and plot.

How can there be any character development, relationship dynamics, or even storyline flow when there is basically nothing to follow in this fragmented and yes muddled format.  It often comes across as more of a writer’s exercise than an actual novel.

So for me Thrall by Avon Gale and Roan Parrish is an indecipherable read, illegible style wise, born out of an interesting idea for a story and format that, imo, should have stayed in the minds and on the drawing boards of these authors.  The imaginative idea of it is the only reason it got as high a rating as it did.

Cover Art is jarring and would be perfect for a murder podcast.

Sales Links: 

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2NNhs8v

All other vendors: https://www.books2read.com/u/bazLN6


Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 529 pages
Published September 27th 2018 by Philtre Press
Edition Language English

One thought on “A MelanieM Review: Thrall by Avon Gale and Roan Parrish

  1. At first I thought this was a F/F story, per the blurb’s focus, then later I thought it was in fact M/M. Either way, I wouldn’t be reading it because I won’t support Roan Parrish due to her involvement in the Santino Hassell fiasco. Thanks for your honest thoughts; it’s good to see something other than 4+ star review once in a while, and this book sounds like it needed some honest beta reads before publishing.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.