Review: Cabin Fever by B.A. Tortuga

Horace is a loner, a mountain man with a claim to a tiny stream of gold and a lonely cabin in the woods. When he finds young Walker wandering lost in his mountains just before the snow flies, he decides he’s found exactly the kind of companionship he craves.

Walker is young, naive, and totally unprepared for the kinds of amusements Horace has in store for him. Good thing he’s willing to try new things, because Horace has a stern hand and a fine sense of adventure, showing Walker things he’d never dreamed of. But what will come when the spring thaw melts all that snow?

Review by Leslie H. Nicoll

A short review for a fairly short (33K words) novella.

This isn’t really historical fiction. It’s more like a story that takes place in the old days. The difference? Well, to me, historical fiction should have some history: description of the place, the people, what’s going on in the world and so on. On the other hand, the old days are differentiated from more modern times by things like lack of indoor plumbing and no electricity. But other than that, the time period is really inconsequential to the story. On top of being in the old days, this novella didn’t have much of a plot. The sex wasn’t porn so it didn’t tip all the way into PWP, but it was dancing around the edge. Even so, something about this story appealed to me and I read it all the way through in one sitting. I think it might be that Horace’s kink is mine (mostly) and that made it entertaining.

Anyway, to the story. As it opens, Walker is wandering around in the woods without proper shoes or clothes, when he bumps into the end of Horace’s rifle just as the first snowflakes of the season start to fall. Horace takes the younger man back to his cabin, warms him up, feeds him, and tells him to get ready for a long winter.

A fella’s got to do something to keep himself entertained on long, cold wintry days and nights, right? A person can only cook so much rabbit stew and play so many games of checkers before one’s thoughts naturally move in a more carnal direction…

Horace, a man of indeterminate age, clearly has a few definite ideas for what he wants from Walker, but realizes the need for trust between them to get there. So he takes things very slowly, letting Walker absorb each intimacy between them, before he moves to the next step. After all, they have all winter.

Walker, also of indeterminate age (but younger than Horace), has moments of doubt and fear that he is going to go straight to hell (or worse), but Horace finds the right balance between being rough and dominant and tender and loving to assuage Walker’s worries. Throw in lots of mind-blowing orgasms and Walker is eventually fully with the program and by the end of the book, thoughts of a life off the mountain and without Horace have long been abandoned.

There was a slightly formulaic feel to the writing and particularly the sex, as if the author had a clipboard next to her computer and kept checking off each new experience as it was introduced. Worse, most of these experiences were presented once and never revisited which is what gave the story the sex-without-plot feeling. That said, there was more than one shaving scene (I like those). Horace kept the woodstove well fed and the little cabin was hot, allowing Walker to be nude most of the time. I’ll admit it, that has a certain sexy appeal (along with his smoothie look) which is in large part what kept me reading.

I had to chuckle at this: winter is ending and supplies and provisions are running low. Does Horace worry about running out of flour, salt, sugar, coffee? Nope. Only one thing is on his mind…oil. LOL.

All in all, not a bad book. While I’ve certainly read much better, I’ve also read much, much worse. If you are looking for a wintry warm up, this might satisfy.

Authors’ website

Torquere Press


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