Series: Walk on Wild Side
Also available: Walk on Wild Side Anthology
Rating: (I really liked it!)
Dreamspinner’s 2016 Daily Dose anthology includes 30 romantic male/male shifter stories released one a day during the month of June.
Synopsis: Alastar the scholar studies the fae creatures who live beyond the Great Iron Wall, and he is assisted by the puppy-like but also mischievous Gadhar. When his changeling friend presents a riddle that stumps him, the researcher must continue to seek answers in the changeling village. The problem of riddles at first fade as an injury, a misunderstanding, and encounters with extremely dangerous creatures all glower over Alastar. Eventually riddles become front and center again, in a way only a fae can make things happen. When a difficult and dangerous turn takes Alastar’s need to care for the bouncy fae-ling to a new level, danger erupts from a wide variety of unexpected places including, perhaps most chillingly, Alastar’s own short-sighted words.
Review: I am a sucker for fairie-inspired stories with the right balance of trickery and enjoyable whimsy, and this story had a wonderfully faelike exploration of these lighthearted, devious, flighty, and dangerous creatures. The author has a somewhat straightforward story wrap around plenty of fairie-inspired twists and turns for such a short piece. Alastar’s earnest and serious scholarship is a nice contrast to Gadhar’s puppy-like enthusiasm. Through quick moving plot developments, interesting characteristics of the changeling village, dangers to changelings from human inventions and prejudices, and threats to Alastar’s well-being due to his own misjudgment and fae trickery, all these elements are woven nicely into a flowing story.
Recommended for fans of: Fae; riddles; dragons; serious scholars who need to lighten up a bit.