Black, One Sugar by Jae Christopher

Black, One Sugar by Jae Christopher
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (18 pgs)
Other: M/M
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern

David has a secret, a secret he has been struggling to tell his lover, Aaron, since the very beginning of their relationship. Unfortunately, David just can’t seem to find the right time or words to share that secret.

Until one morning, when he accidentally blurts it out over their coffee. Now all David has to worry about is whether or not Aaron can handle what he’s been told.

David was happy being alone, not needing or wanting the complication of a boyfriend. But after being ambushed into a blind date, Aaron is too perfect for him to pass up on. Two months down the track and after a special evening together, David finally tells Aaron the truth — that he has lycanthropy. Aaron is understandably shocked and upset, Aaron had merely asked David how he liked his coffee, and instead found his world turned upside down.

This is an emotionally charged short story. I really enjoyed how the author brought the drama and tension together so quickly. I also liked the simile between the phobias and bigotry surrounding lycanthropy in the story’s world, and AIDS and other similar diseases in ours. I was a little disappointed how there wasn’t any graphic sex or showing of passion/displays of affection between David and Aaron. Despite the new depth to their relationship there wasn’t much in the way of physical contact between them or sexual chemistry. This gave the book more of a flavor of straight-Paranormal to me, not romantic or erotic Paranormal.

The world-building is solid and well explained without feeling like a massive info-dump. It made me interested in the author’s style of werewolves and their world. I’d certainly be interested to read more stories by Jaw Christopher. Short and emotional, this would be an excellent prologue-style story for a longer series, or an introduction into an interesting new paranormal world.

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