Racing Wild by Ayla Ruse

Racing Wild by Ayla Ruse
Reindeer Games
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Holiday, Historical
Length: Short Story (44 pages)
Other: M/F, Anal Play
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

Varian Swift of the Border Elves has two pressing desires: to win the finals in the annual Reindeer Games, and to find a mate before dawn.

Randolwyn of the Wild Elves runs the Games’ blacksmith shop. Once she thought she wanted a mate, but that was years ago, before a cruel trick made her turn her back on love.

When an accident brings Varian to Randolwyn’s shop, he’s struck with the bone-deep knowledge that he’s found his mate. But she doubts his claim, even as she’s drowning in his kisses.

Games are meant to have challenges, but with love on the line, games should take a back seat. Instead, this Christmas Eve becomes a race against the clock, a race to catch up, and a race to outrun those who dare to break them apart.

Most workdays are so quiet and ordinary that you soon forget exactly what happened during any particular one of them. Every once in a while, though, a workday arrives full of surprises. Will Randolwyn know how to react when this happens to her?

There were a few different funny moments that caught my attention. This is something I really enjoy discovering in erotic stories because of how it can be used to temporarily break the tension while also keeping the plot moving forward steadily. These funny moments were definitely used this way in this case, and that was a good thing!

The chemistry between Varian and Randolwyn never felt quite right to me. This was due in large part to how rapidly and regularly their opinions of each other changed. As a result of this, I was never entirely sure what they’d think of one another in any given scene. I would have liked to see more attention paid to why their moods were shifting so quickly so that I could have better predicted when they might change yet again.

This tale was full of intricate world building. I noticed it the most in the backstories of the two main characters. Their earlier lives were only given a few sentences’ worth of attention, but what the narrators did share about them made me want to know more. The brief glimpses of the society these characters lived in were absolutely fascinating because of how complex they were.

I’d recommend Racing Wild to anyone who is in the mood for something short and saucy.

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