Book Reviews

Tom or An Improbable Tail by Ruth Sims at Lethe Press

Genre Gay / Paranormal / Shifters / Romance
Reviewed by Lena Grey on 25-February-2013

Book Blurb

In Ruth Sims' beloved contemporary fairy tale, "Tom or an Improbable Tail," a lonely gay lawyer's cat spends six months of the year in the shape of a hot twink. Of course, our owner happens to be closeted at a very conservative law firm. Dare he want more than a pet?


Book Review

Making decisions can be an arduous task at best, but when the decision will determine what will happen to someone's future, it's especially difficult. This modern day fairy tale is about William from 'Tom: An Improbable' Tale by Ruth Sims. Making decisions are not his forte. In his whole life he has let other people decide things for him—his father decided he'd be a lawyer and, because of his chosen profession, there were further decisions taken away from him, like what he wore, where he went, where he lived, and with whom he associated.

The town he lives in is very old-fashioned, conservative and clean—literally and morally. He doesn’t have much of a social life as he is in the closet. He can’t tell anyone he is gay. Another decision which is made for him if he wants to keep his job. The night William made the decision to bring a stray cat home, even though it was strictly forbidden to have a pet in his apartment, he was making his first real decision by himself. He and the cat settled in immediately as if they were made for each other.

One day, he comes home and finds a handsome naked boy on his couch. Completely bewildered, all kinds or scenarios go through his mind as he tries to figure out how the boy got there. When William finally accepts what Tom, the boy, tells him, that he's actually a werecat and changes from a cat to a man and back again, William is even more confused about what to do with him. Since Tom can't do it for himself, William has to start making decisions for him leading to some hilarious situations. William becomes quite attached to Tom, but his overtures are adamantly rejected. As William ponders their situation, a question comes to him: “There has to be some way, William thought, to keep him like this.” He contacts his friend, who is a scientist, explains the situation, seeking an answer to his question. His friend agrees to help him, but reminds William that cats are happiest in the wild.

Tom is having trouble adjusting to being a man. He still prefers to do very 'cat-like' things much to William's distress. He wants to please William, but also doesn't want to give up things that are important to him. So he goes along with William's requests as far as he can. William tells him of the solution and gives Tom a choice. The thing is, Tom isn't capable of making a decision.  Eventually, when the time is right, William makes it for him and they live happily ever after.

This is a comical, witty story told like a fable. Ruth takes everyday situations and injects humor and sadness in equal parts and a whole lot of magic. The result is a very short, but entertaining story reminding us that we have to be who we are meant to be. Thanks, Ruth, for the entertainment.





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Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Short Story, 25 pages/5200words
Heat Level
Publication Date 24-February-2009
Buy Link