Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Warmth, family, good cheer? Not everyone associates these things with the winter holidays. For some, it’s a time of longing and reflection. Mischief Corner Books invites authors to create stories set during the holiday season and centered on the fulfillment of a wish or desire.
I love collections. They often provide a quick introduction to new authors or give you a variety of stories that cross genres such as This Wish Tonight does. Mischief Corner Books delivers a collection which includes science fiction, zombie apocalypse and a contemporary mystery. Not bad for the holidays! And romance too. Here they are with my mini reviews and ratings!
Eve of the Great Frost by Wendy Rathbone – 4.5 stars
Remi has prepared for over a year to be the king’s gift at the annual celebration of the Eve of the Great Frost on the planet Niobe. Twelve men, taught under the tutelage of the Pleasure Master, hope to be the one (or one of several) chosen to spend an erotic night with the mysterious alien king who always wears a mask. But when Remi’s turn comes to be presented to His Majesty, everything goes wrong from a costume malfunction to breaking protocol. What happens next is a shock, and a night he will never forget.
I loved the world building here and really wanted to know so much more. It was an intriguing picture Rathbone built up in my head, especially one such as me who knows her Prime Directive (yes, geek flag flying). In a short amount of pages, she had their characters, built their relationship, and made it real. And very sexy, erotic. Khan would have approved.
Wonderland by J. Scott Coatsworth – 4.5 stars
Zeke is a loner his late forties, living in a small cabin in rural Montana. Nathan has been traveling across country on foot since the zombie apocalypse, dealing with his OCD in an empty world.
Zeke just wants someone to love. Nathan just wants to be home again.
Fate brings them together in a winter wonderland, but their own fears and baggage may tear them apart.
Is there still hope for love at Christmas, at the end of the world?
Coatsworth came up with an altogether different sort of apocalypse in Wonderland. Still meant the end of civilization and most of humankind. Zeke is thinking he’s the last one left until Nathan shows up. What follows is tender, real, and loving. Its a beautiful story of hope, recovery and weirdly enough romance. Coatsworth has taken a familiar theme and made it his with these wonderful characters and an ending that leaves you smiling and full of wonder. Yes, I loved it.
Fear of Fire by Gregory L. Norris – 3.5 stars
Glass Artist Lucius Price works desperately to create a holiday symbol intended to help the town of Villatopia heal from a rash of unsolved hate crimes against gay men. When he is targeted next and his studio set ablaze, handsome firefighter Oscar Ramos rescues Lucius from the flames, creating a different kind of fire during an unforgettable Christmas.
Fear of Fire works for most of the story. I loved the men, especially Lucius Price the glass artist. Norris fits enough of glass working into his story to make Lucius and his art real. I wish that Oscar and the firefighters felt the same. Perhaps the small town and their firefighters could account for the inconsistencies that pop up here but in this time and place, they and the procedures followed are hard to overlook. As much as I loved this couple, the rest of the story felt unrealistic enough to bring the rating down. If you are looking for romance alone, then this couple might be just your thing.
**Please Note: The stories in this anthology will not be released individually.
Genres: mm romance, holiday, Christmas, gay science fiction, gay contemporary
Cover Artist: Freddy MacKay. The cover is cute, not sure it fits in with the wide disparity of all three stories.
Available for Purchase at
Kindle Edition, First, 228 pages
Published December 14th 2016 by Mischief Corner Books, LLC
SeriesMischief Corner Collections #2