Treasure Trail by Nicole Dennis

Treasure Trail by Nicole Dennis
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (71 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Owner of Matey’s Tavern, a popular brewpub-tavern in St. Augustine, Florida, Derick Keyes loves his adopted hometown and job. He also harbors a crush on a pirate captain.

Tour guide for the popular Pirate Pub Walking Tour, Christopher Easton portrays a pirate captain as he takes visitors on a guided tour of St. Augustine, stopping at certain taverns for a pint of grog and tales of the golden age of piracy. With a little liquid courage, Chris breaks the cycle when he talks to Derick. Things change between them. Derick wants a chance for more with Chris.

During the Annual Pirate Festival, Derick creates a treasure hunt for Chris after “cursing” him. To break the curse, Chris must find four clues before the final battle on Sunday night. Only then can the curse be broken.

Matey’s Tavern is one of the oldest pubs in St. Augustine. Derrick is the owner and is very happy that his pub is on the regular route for the tourist attraction – the Pirate Pub Crawl. Captain Chris was far and away Derrick’s favourite tour leader, six feet tall of deeply interesting man, Derrick couldn’t deny his attraction to the Captain. But Derrick is painfully shy and doesn’t know how to approach Chris. Chris is certainly interested, but doesn’t know Derrick returns the attraction. Can these two men find their way to each other?

I found this to be a fun story, full of pirate lore and set in the lovely historical city of St. Augustine. I enjoyed how the author worked in a fair bit of history about the city without info-dumping and made it feel relevant and intriguing. Derrick and Chris are both really interesting characters and I found myself drawn into the start of their relationship quite quickly. Readers who like a slower pace to their romances should be as thrilled by Derrick and Chris as I was. I loved how they got to know each other a bit first, talking and spending time and not simply jumping straight into bed.

Readers who like pirate stories should also find this a fun and great read. While the re-enactments and pirate stuff is certainly part of the plot, I enjoyed how it was (for me, at least) a completely different way for the two men to come together. And while both Derrick and Chris talked about a whole lot of other things as they got to know each other, the theme of the pirate tours stayed strong throughout the story – it wasn’t just dropped as soon as the men got to know each other, and I found this quite refreshing.

For a hot, sexy and explicit read this story ticks a number of great boxes for me. I loved both Chris and Derrick’s characters and found myself quite attached to them both almost form the start. With a fun scavenger’s hunt, loads of pirate acting and games and a bit of history about the town of St. Augustine, I found this to be a fantastic book and a great read. I’ll happily be reading it many times to come.

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