Title: The Faller (Dreamspinner 2018 Advent Calendar – Warmest Wishes)
Author: Daniel de Lorne
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 1, 2018
Genre(s): Historical Romance, Holidays
Page Count: 46 pages
Reviewed by: CrabbyPatty
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Being caught with another man sends Charlie Young fleeing his family to the forests of southwestern Australia to scrape together steamer-passage to the big smoke of London. But life as a timber faller isn’t easy and it’s made worse when the men he works with are brash, bigoted, and often brutal. All except Jack Tapper, who’s the kind of gentle giant that sets Charlie’s heart racing.
While the other men head into town for Christmas, it’s just Charlie and Jack and acres of forest. But trees tell no tales and a few days alone is the perfect opportunity to indulge a bourgeoning passion. When the men return and find things not as they once were, Charlie and Jack have to make the hard decisions about whether to stay where they are or run for their lives.
Charlie Young becomes a tree faller in Australia’s jarrah forest to earn enough money for steamer passage to London. He’s young and inept and worries that he’ll never put together enough money to escape. When three of the five-man camp go into town for Christmas, Charlie stays behind with Jack Tapper, an expert faller who has never said more than a few words to him.
In a few short days, the men start a romance and decide to throw their lot in together, but when the other fallers return to camp, their plans go awry. We only get Charlie’s POV here and I would have liked to get Jack’s viewpoint as well. Also, the story ends almost mid-stride and we are left wondering and hoping that these two men make a life together. A brief epilogue would have been greatly appreciated! 3 stars.