Title: Runaway Prince
Author: May Ridge
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Release Date: August 3rd, 2016
Word Count: 26.000
Reviewed by: PrinCkhera
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
On the run from his family and a life he hates, Astin reluctantly stops to rest at a trashy motel for the night. The very last thing he expects is Delaney, a bold, beautiful rentboy—and Astin’s mate.
Let’s start with the obvious. Shifter stories are hard to pull off at the best of times. There is so much out there, and so much of it is basically subpar that I don’t even bother much with this particular subset of MM romance. When I do, it is under advisement of friends, or I am familiar enough with the author to perhaps say why not. This book belongs to neither category, yet I was intrigued by the premise.
Certainly, this story is an interesting attempt at the genre, but this shifter/werewolf part of the plot was severely underdeveloped and it felt that it was primarily there just to be able to use the whole mate thing, and give Astin a “reason” to pursue Delaney – a prostitute. Because, of course there wouldn’t be any other reason to pursue someone like that unless there was some mythical bond between the two? Perhaps that wasn’t the author’s intention, but that’s how it came over because 1) the shifter thing was then only used as a device to make Astin hit rock bottom, and 2) the whole degrading prostitutes thing came up quite late in the story to make Astin hit said rock bottom. It was an out of character outburst, and created unnecessary angst, which then didn’t even have the space to be elaborated upon because the whole process of getting his head out of his ass is skipped and he pulls a Richard Gere like stunt from Pretty Woman at the end?
I’m not quite as familiar with shifter fiction, relatively to what is out there as you know now. Therefore, similarities in methods that authors use to portray their werewolves? For me, that view is very limited. The concept used here is interesting though! So, I wish the author had developed it more and given it more purpose. Also, forgiveness is not that easy. I want my MCs to fucking grovel if they were as stupid as Astin acted.
Other ending comments. Weren’t werewolves supposed to be super possessive? How about the whole “mate” thing? We are kind of left hanging, and I would have liked to know how the whole dynamic between the two would end up working out. Does this mean Delaney is going to keep his job, or not?
Basically, you can look but don’t touch.
We’re given an ending, but it feels incomplete.
Also, what about Delaney. We don’t learn a lot about him, and I would have really liked to. Having a dual point of view could have helped add more depth to the story, because in the end I still don’t get what’s going on in that head of his and it feels more like a HFN ending than anything else.
Because the future is uncertain, and by no means is it one without hurdles. But, the thing is. I wanted to learn more about those hurdles. How does Astin plan on ruling the Kingdom? What about his father?
We know Astin’s side of the story, though sporadic as it may be, but I want more.
Okay, so I may have been a bit critical, but other than these issues, this was a quick and fun read. I liked the banter between Astin and Delaney when they were doing their
mating ritual courtship. I think Delaney wasn’t really planning on making Astin pay if he didn’t even believe the whole Prince thing to begin with. I mean, they’re staying in a really crappy motel, and Delaney is nobody’s fool. He just needed it as something to put some “necessary” distance between him and someone that could potentially break his heart even though he didn’t think so at the time. I think, it was more of a self-defence mechanism, if anything.
This book has the potential to become much more, and if this was longer in length, it would have had the space to develop more because that’s what I felt it lacked most. I would have liked more development of both the plot, and the in-between falling for each other. I love the in-between moments, which is where the real character development happens, and those were frankly skipped.