Title: Centaur of Attention (College of United Monsters #2)
Author: C. B. Archer
Publisher: Deep Desires Press
Release Date: October 9, 2018
Genre(s): Fantasy, Humour, Short Story
Page Count: 51 Pages
Reviewed by: ColinJ
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
The once elitist College of United Monsters (C.U.M.) is still falling on hard times. In order to stay afloat it had been forced to allow humans to register. Humans, in a monster school? Preposterous! Also, monsters were discovered to exist and that is still a bigger shock to the world than one monster school allowing humans to enroll.
Hugh Min is not a regular ridiculous human. Instead, he is a human that was adopted as a young child by a family of yeti. Hugh has more problems than the average student—an insatiable level of emotional angst, an insatiable appetite for snack foods, and an insatiable…whole lot of other problems. Will Hugh be able to successfully bridge two impassible college gaps, one between the sporty jocks and the geeky geeks, and the other against monsters and humans? Only by gaining access to the most sacred of all places—a centaur’s closet—will this question be answered.
Honestly, it serves him right for having a crush on an easily punned monster type and attending monster college.
The second in the series of stories takes a slightly different approach. Once again this is an opportunity for inter-species interaction within the college. This story places a very heavy emphasis on puns and role-playing games along with the usual branded drinks and slang terms. Perhaps this reviewer is just too old, but the language used in these stories is very difficult to understand and it is easy to lose track of what is happening and who is involved. It has to be assumed that the stories are supposed to be humorous, but it is unclear whether this is situational or verbal.
As with the first story in the series, this one includes a character whose nature becomes clear towards the end of the book. Similarly, public sex seems to be the norm throughout the school and is treated as just an interesting activity to observe. Characters are understood more by what they do than what they think, they all appear very superficial.
The development of the relationship between the two leads appears to be based on one individual who has a crush and the other playing on this to draw him out. Situations are based around opportunities for sex, which is described in some detail. The reader has no empathy for the characters and as such the sex is just descriptive and lacks emotion.
As a short story it is easy to get through the tale in a single sitting. The pace is steady but could have been faster if the language was not so confusing.
The end of the story is much like the preceding book where the relationship is established and that is sufficient to provide a happily ever after. Since the plot is purely a mechanism to bring these characters together there are no additional threads to resolve.