Erotic Paranormal Romance ~ BrE
Contains adult language, extreme violence and explicit sex.
Reading Lunar Light, I couldn’t shake from my mind the old white wolf table-top roleplay games I wasted so many weekends on in my youth. The principle characters, like the players in our adolescent games, are thrown together and trust each other on sight (as if in a favour to the storyteller). However, unlike the stories constructed and acted out by a group of teenage boys, the principle characters spent the majority of the book shagging rather than seeking out enemies to kill.
The white-wolf similarity stalks any supernatural tale in the modern era. You can see it in everything from Twilight to True Blood and I do not begrudge it; I once tried to make a pilot for a vampire television show that in hindsight would have got the shit sued out of me. Good job no-one was interested in vampires back in the late nineties! Fletcher, at least, tries to stray from the standard werewolf stereotype by having the main creatures be Wendigo/Wendiga, a North American cannibalistic demon. I must confess, it was this ingredient that made me download the book and give it a go, one of my favourite novels (Stephen King’s Pet Semetary) involves the mystery of the legend of the Wendigo and I was curious as to how Fletcher would handle it.
The Lunar Light Wendigo is a beast rather similar to the werewolf, though perhaps a little stronger and with some curious powers over the weather system. I would have liked a greater distinction as this was a defining flavour of the tale and one worthy of exploration. As it stood, the story was more concerned with the relationship between the two protagonists than exploring the mythos of their backstory, though of course this may have been a conscious decision to show how little they understood of it themselves.
There are a trio of characters who dominate the storyline; Luke, a mysterious Wendigo fleeing peril; Evangeline, a Wendiga brought up in isolation from her kind; and her Da, a human who had raised her whilst instilling a deep guilt about her brutal nature. We see the events through the eyes of Luke and Evangeline, giving alternative viewpoints (mostly of each other’s genitals), and in retrospect I would have liked more from Evangeline’s Da, a character that I grew to like mostly because the author was so adamant I should hate him. The two lovers of the story seemed so naïve it was hard to support their actions, especially when Evangeline rejects her (admittedly brutal) father for a stranger she’d suddenly fallen in love with, seemingly because he was such a good lay.
As a piece of erotica, Lunar Light hits many right notes. The scenes are well paced, with some variety to keep them fresh. However they are so frequent that I felt myself getting frustrated with their sheer obsession with screwing. Sacrificing some of the sex for character development would have gone a long way in making the remaining erotic scenes a bit more effective. That said, Fletcher had a good rhythm and some pretty decent prose.
As horror the piece felt a little confused. We were repeatedly told that Evangeline was a monster, but being a monster hadn’t had enough of an effect upon her psyche to be believable. When bringing home a Wendiga (another monster) she worries about him seeing panties on the floor and discarded erotic novels. It was difficult to believe that a woman primarily concerned with her cannibalism would behave in a way that usually only comes from a high degree of socialisation.
Admittedly I doubt I am the target audience, so lambasting this novella with my own gripes about the story would be unfair. As a supernatural romance it seems solid, if a little light on the mythology. I understand there is a sequel, so that could fill in the gaps or flesh out the background pleasingly.
If you are looking for a piece of erotic fiction with a dark twist (but not so much darkness as to put you off your sex) then this could be for you. Fletcher’s writing is pleasing and doesn’t shy from the sex, what else are you after??
Lunar Light is available now on kindle for £0.76. Get it here!