Unicorn Favourites: Love in an Open Road Stories: Week Ten

The M/M Romance Group on Goodreads hosts a Don't Read in the Closet event each year where they invite members to submit a photo with a story prompt. Interested authors then volunteer to write the requested stories, which are published for free for everyone to read. It's a fun/exciting/stressful process, and a great opportunity to read stories from favourite authors. And chances are, you'll also discover some new authors, who hopefully have a back-list of goodies to check out :)

This year's event was named Love is an Open Road and they started releasing the completed stories on June first. Here at BMBR, we've been following along on comment threads, anticipating the stories from our favourite prompts, and now greedily reading the stories as they become available.

Sunny: Deep Magic by Gillian St Kevern
Awesome read...

Loved the characters, their story, and the world they lived in.  With an otherworldly feel, with touches of sweetness and humor, and with brilliant little details (Sir Spikesalot :D), this fascinating story captured and kept my interest through every layer, through every reveal.

A few small niggles, mostly how young the adult MCs seemed at times...and I would have liked more world building details like how the morgen age in the water, if they age differently out of the water. Overall, though, this was a delightful, engaging tale and I would love to see it continued, maybe with Duhywynt and Myfanwy? *crosses fingers*

Optimist King's Wench: Still Waters by Alex Gabriel
Be prepared to be blown away.

The world building, story and characters are so rich and nuanced that I sort of went into a trance while reading. Fair warning, it's slightly dark and not at all saccharine for those who tend to shy away from that sort of read.

Drakjan is a ginger nix, not a merman. The lake and river in which he resides are part of world vibrant with mythical creatures from werewolves to match girls, some fundamentally malevolent. The circumstances under which the rip/portal was opened to allow Drakjan through are murky, though I believe that's intentional. Drakjan coexists with his fellow creatures, but doesn't interact with them and hasn't for quite some time. He's forced from his watery home by a couple of murders that have the townsfolk on edge. 

Hraban attempts to hunt him in his own waters. Nixs are not known for their benevolence and their first couple of meetings are hostile and rife with murderous intent. However, Hraban being a professional hunter has a vast knowledge of mythical beings and together they form an uneasy alliance to solve the mystery.

The words are evocative and mesmerizing. Nix mythology was expertly woven into this story. The enemies to lovers trope is deftly composed. Neither of these characters are in the least bit squishy and when they come together it is savage and fierce. 

There's not one fault I can find. The ending is perfect. I couldn't ask for anything more.

It boggles my mind that it's free. I love this country!

Highly recommended.

My thanks to the author and their team for this contribution to the LOR event.

Lorix: Inkling by Alice Archer
This story...it's one of those I don't know how to rate. On one hand I love the writing style, on the other the storyline drove me a bit mad. I loved the premise of the story (great prompt and pic, the author does very well at providing what the prompter asked for), but it felt a little bit like a soap opera. In fact, it was very much like a soap. While I enjoyed reading the story, and the style kept me turning the pages, the over-the-top events and reactions made me raise an eyebrow at times. Mary Calmes makes me feel the same way. I decided on 4 stars, because I did enjoy the story and, at the end of the day, that is what reading is all about. Thank you. 

No comments:

Post a Comment