- Book Title: Goldilocks
- Book Series: Frozen #2
- Author: Scarlet Blackwell
- Publisher: eXtasy Books (August 12, 2016)
- Book Length: 103 pages
- Genre: Gay Romance, Contemporary, Erotic
- Reviewed by: Diane
- Rating: 3.5 Star
This is one of those novellas where the star of the story turns out to be location, location, location… with a side of weather. It also requires a strong suspension of disbelief because only one of the characters has anything resembling clear motivation, or even moderate stakes in a murky outcome.
The setting is a trip down one of the most dangerous highways on the continent, a stowaway, a trucker consumed with loneliness, and a case of insta-lust tempered with a strong dose of caution and loads of mixed signals. Luka is the ne’er-do-well stowaway who claims to be running, though he’s vague on details and far too anxious to offer up compensation of the carnal type if Marshall will take him to Fairbanks. That’s against the rules and puts the truck driver Marshall in the rock/hard place, with only his libido making the final decisions.
There are some tense moments along the way, the requisite advance-retreat, misunderstandings and regrets, and far too many questions—voiced by Marshall himself—as to why a good man gets so easily passed over in the game of finding a soulmate. It’s difficult to get invested in Luka. He consistently distances himself, both from Marshall and the reader, and it soon becomes apparent that the trucker’s choices are governed almost exclusively by his isolation, resignation and desperation. It’s not exactly a recipe for HEA, but in the end there’s the promise of it all working out.
Goldilocks, though undemanding and short on character development, does offer up a taste of life in the frozen north, including how the dark brings out the worst in some, and hints at the dangers of living life on the edge in an unforgiving wilderness.
Trucker Marshall Westray travels up and down the inhospitable Dalton Highway in Alaska delivering equipment to the oilfields at Prudhoe Bay. Leaving the town of Deadhorse for his last trip to Fairbanks before his vacation, he stops en route, climbs behind the cab and finds a man in his bed!
The stowaway is half naked and very easy on the eye. Luka tells Marshall he was desperate for the ride and begs him to take him all the way to Fairbanks. With Marshall’s job at stake, he’s not sure what the right thing is to do. He’s instantly attracted to the stranger and he knows the guy is in need of help – there’s more to his story than meets the eye. What should he do for the best when it’s just him and Luka and 498 miles of wilderness?