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Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Wild Horses by Zoey Daniels

Wild Horses by Zoey Daniels
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (37 pgs)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, F/M/M, ménage
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

Bold, independent, and free, Callie's worked hard to become the best courier on Leman. Always too adventurous for polite folks and too blunt not to make enemies, now she's got a chance to break ground and blaze trails on the newly colonized agri-moon known as Leman. She's found the life she was born for.

And she's not the only one to notice. As Callie traverses the sparsely populated prairies, two unusual stallions begin to shadow her every move. They may be young, but these native shapeshifters are as adventurous as Callie, and they're set on proving they're old enough to handle her. They've got enough "horse sense" to know this fiery filly is riding hell-bent-for-leather right into a wild ride that's more than she can handle alone.

Time for the stallions to take the reins.

Bonding between horses and women is a centuries old reality. Where I live, more women than men have horses so this sexy little science fiction romp puts a new spin as to why there could be such an attraction. Of course, to get the kind of action that takes place in this short story one has to travel to a galaxy far, far into infinity and beyond. Add another fact into the mix; most ladies I know can’t have just the one horse. No, they always seem to have two, therefore, it didn’t come as much of a surprise to find the heroine enjoying the frisky antics of two alien horses on the range.

Except, are they really horses? Much to Callie’s delight, and my interest, the not so surprising answer is yes, and no. The dynamic of the answer is fascinating in and of itself and has to be read to be understood.

When Gray and Buck decide to communicate, their dialogue is fitting. They’re not human, they’re not from Earth or any derivative, and words aren’t required when they horse around all day. I liked how the author manipulated their speech patterns enough to get that alien feel without losing me in the process.

This story is told from Callie’s point of view only. I got to understand her needs, her interpretation of events and her reaction to having these two males focus solely on her. One thing is for sure, Callie is no shy Miss. She’s bold, accepting of her sexuality and loves herself, figuratively as well as literally. A confident woman is attractive and challenging to a self-assured and powerful man and Gray is hooked. Buck is no slouch either and he races circles around the heroine. He’s as smitten by her as Gray is so eventually the loving action gets a bit frisky and Callie gets another chance to act like the woman she used to be, albeit a toned down one.

And that’s the thing. As sexy and as titillating as having two men physically love a woman is, the author toned down the descriptives making the sex more about imagination and sensual pleasures. It wasn’t crass or full of overused expletives. It was nicely done with just enough intensity for a reader to be satisfied but not enough to be bored. It was a celebration of a woman finding her dreams coming true in a most unlikely place. She grabbed on with both hands and legs and to heck with the alienness of her situation. She was finally happy and recognized she found what was truly important.

That being said, the delivery of Callie’s POV was almost as odd as the males’. I’m assuming it’s because she’s alien too. I guess I’m not used to reading a character’s internal monologues as short choppy sentences. It was kind of like she had ADD, but not. It was unusual but it sort of fit the story. On the plus side, the author had a tremendous amount of colorful metaphors to describe the scenery, the locale and some other interesting observations. I was impressed with how beautiful some of them were.

Wild Horses is a quick, sexy read for fans of erotic sci-fi romance fantasies. It boasts unusual heroes that compliment a unique heroine, the pace is zippy and the dialogue provided that flavor of ‘otherness’. It’s a good book to pass the time with.

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