Loving a Caveman by Philomena MacKinnon

CAVE
Loving a Caveman by Philomena MacKinnon
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Historical
Length: Short Story (22 pages)
Other: M/F
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

Mira is a young, innocent cave girl who can’t imagine that marriage would ever be for her. And when her father chooses Regus, a weakling to her eyes, she is close to running away from home.

Before she can marry, she must learn what being a woman in the stone age is all about.

And when the wedding night arrives, she discovers that it’s not all about killing saber-tooth cats and that what waits beneath Regus’ furs can give her a lot more pleasure.

Finding passion in an arranged marriage doesn’t seem very likely, especially when the person Mira’s father has chosen for her is the exact opposite of her ideal man.

Mira is a stubborn protagonist whose tendency to expect the worst out of life sometimes left me shaking my head. She quickly becomes likable, though, and even her worst faults were never overblown or excused. Ms. MacKinnon presents a healthy balance of positive and negative traits in her characters, Mira included.

It would have been helpful to know more about how Mira’s society is organized. It appears to be formed out of several loosely affiliated tribes who get together for special occasions, but I was never quite sure how it all works. At a few different points during this tale, Mira talks about things that seem out of place for the world in which she’s grown up. While none of them are necessarily impossible in a prehistoric setting, encountering so many of them pulled me out of the plot as I wondered what was going on with them.

Sometimes it takes a while for the right chemistry to form between two people. This realistic approach to a very ancient tradition made a lot of sense for Mira and Regus’ introduction. Something this length doesn’t leave a great deal of room for the characters to get to know one another slowly, but I was impressed by how smoothly the author indicated the passage of time to take advance of every inch of writing space that was available to her.

Loving a Caveman is a unique tale that snagged my attention as soon as I read the blurb for it. It’s a quick read that left this audience member wanting more.

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