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Thursday, November 5, 2009

One Shot by Rowan McBride

One Shot by Rowan McBride
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: M/M, Sci-fi
Length: Short Story (130 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Sex
Rating: 4 Cherries
Review by Cactus

Nick Carlyle understands the intricacies of his job better than anyone. He lives to crunch those numbers and his skills are valued throughout the company. If his personal life might be lacking, he doesn't notice, especially whenever he steals a harmless glance or two at Riley Jameson's tight body. But he's the boss, and that means look but don't touch.

When a universal flu shot is developed, it's hailed as a miracle, and rightly so. But the seemingly harmless side effects begin to change the world, warping the statistics that Nick's always used to guide him through life. Everything he thought he knew is suddenly upside down.

No one changes as much as Riley. Suddenly the young man is bigger, stronger. He's also aggressive in ways Nick isn't prepared for, and for the first time analyzing the numbers does nothing to help the situation.

Now, his numbers only add up when it comes to Riley.
Unexpected romance springs when a flu shot changes Nick and Riley’s lives. In this day of modern medicine, One Shot offers a twist on the theme of a flu shot. Along with immunity to the sickness causing bugs, people also gain height. Riley is one such man who gains over a foot in height. Others are sprouting up all over and Nick worries he may be left behind. With this concern at the forefront, Nick finally succumbs to pressure and gets his flu shot. Except Nick ends up being in the small percentage that actually shrinks. Nick must wage through insecurity and doubt to understand if the new Riley is really interested in him or just messing with the short boss.

This is a fun and delightful yaoi inspired story with a bit of a twist. Those familiar with the author know of his fascination with muscle growth and any readers with a similar fetish will want to run out and get this book now! The growth Riley goes through is expounded on endlessly as Riley’s new muscles grow just from breathing and tear through several sets of clothes. There are a few too many scenes going into minute detail about this but overall the fun, entertaining theme and voice of the story help carry it over any small problems. Added to this are the hot sex scenes, sure to please fans that enjoy classic yaoi characters. The writing is interesting with a lot of dialogue that helps speed past the few bumps in the story.

A few problems with the story mostly revolve around the character of Nick. The characters in the story from Riley to the secondary characters of Nick’s coworkers are well drawn and infuse interest and vibrancy to the story. Unfortunately the character of Nick tries hard to ruin all of that with his obsessive complaining, negative attitude, and personality change. With the advent of the flu shot Nick goes from a confident, calm, in control man to an insecure, obsessive man who is complaining about everything. Nick refuses to believe anyone could be interested in him since he’s so short now (5’8”) and makes the same mistakes over and over again. This is annoying and frustrating but the other characters in the story helped me get over this problem. Additionally while the concept of the flu shot increasing muscle growth is far fetched, this is really just the motivation to reverse Riley and Nick’s characters into the more classic yaoi personalities.

Overall, if you can get past the whining of Nick, this is a fun and enjoyable story. The concept is weird but unique and the quick pace makes this a fast read. The character of Nick will turn some readers off and the overly graphic muscle scenes won’t be to everyone’s taste but for the most part I rather enjoyed the story. This will definitely appeal to readers and the light hearted tone will entice many.

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