Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Lyncoln has had a night job working maintenance at Laurel Hill Mall for the past ten years. The James family owns the mall and Adam James, IV, is in charge of renovation. After a disaster, they are staying in the fallout shelter in the basement of the mall theater. I have liked this author’s work before and the plot sounded post apocalyptic so I was very excited. Who knew, maybe there would be zombies? Aliens?! Sadly, this is not that.
This still could have been a great deal of fun. This short story is a full of tropes: blue collar/wealthy, hurt/comfort, forced proximity, and emergency situations. Pretty quickly I thought I had the plot device sussed, but when it went into dual POV, I thought I must be wrong. I shrugged and thought now that we have our two MCs on lockdown together, there would be sexy times. There was a hint of that, but most of the sex took place off page. So, what was the point? I’m not sure.
I don’t want to spoil the plot twist for anyone so this is hard to critique. I will say this is a plot twist that I feel is overused. I will also say the epilogue then takes it to the next level of fantasy. Even if this was meant to have been a fantasy fulfillment short story that would have been fine, but I still would have wanted more than what was here, not in length, but in substance.
The cover design is by Written Ink Designs and shows a great photo of urban decay, which fits the subject of this type of story.
Published August 25th 2018 by JMS Books LLC