Landfall by Lori Toland
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: GLBT Contemporary
Length: 41 pages
ER nurse and hospice worker Jared White is caught up in more than just high winds when a hurricane traps him with Deputy Fire Chief Mike Brown. The handsome firefighter has had Jared drooling every time he visits the ER, but as far as Jared knows, Mike is straight – until a downed bridge strands them alone in an empty firehouse. Will their passionate encounter outlast the storm?
Severe weather makes a sexy backdrop, as long as you're inside watching the elements rage on the other side of a window. Landfall, by Lori Toland, lets a nurse and a fire chief have their moments. It's in the middle of a hurricane, so the moments should be awfully good.
The story unfortunately requires severe suspension of disbelief, and I was tired of the logical inconsistencies by page eight. The island is being buffeted by ninety mile an hour winds, the roads are closed to all but emergency vehicles, the bridges are collapsing of the storm surge, but a hospice nurse has to make a non-emergent house call, the emergency equipment becomes his personal limo, and getting him back to the mainland when he was in a safe place is the fire chief's concern. The hospice nurse, Jared, doesn't have the sense to follow directions or to come in out of the rain, even when it's being driven into his face at ninety miles an hour.
Jared is a romantic, though, and he's harboring a secret crush on Mike Brown, the sexy fire chief who becomes his chauffeur and rescuer.
I was a dreamer deep down, always hoping one day my prince would pull me up on his white horse and we would ride off into the sunset together. Maybe his red fire truck is a white horse in disguise.
Part of this meet-wet scenario involves Mike carrying Jared back to the truck. This, a few pleasant but non-committal remarks in public, and some wild sex back at the fire station bring out the romantic in Mike: this is the sum total of their interaction but Mike is already dreaming too.
Mike pressed his lips together and then sighed. “I realize where we ended off that morning, and I feel terrible. I left abruptly and… I thought… I hoped you knew how much you meant to me.”
Readers who enjoy insta-love stories will probably like this; the weather and the sex are raging, but readers who want to see some development will be disappointed. I was rather sad, because the set up had a great deal of potential for adventure with two strong characters, which did not materialize. 2.5 marbles