Thank you to Less Than Three Press for sending me a copy of this short story to read in exchange for an honest review.
Having never read Cecil Wilde before I started this with absolutely no idea of what to expect at all, bar the fact that it sounded like it would be a cosy little Christmas story; perfect for this time of year.
What the blurb says:
Gabriel Juarez has only one wish for Christmas, uttered moments before midnight on Christmas Eve: a hug. He wakes up the next morning to find his wish being haphazardly granted in the form of an insecure elf called Felix, who works as a wish augur and couldn’t bring himself to let Gabe’s wish go unfulfilled.
Which pretty much sums it up nicely. The story is short and I read the whole thing in less than an hour. It opens on Christmas Eve and we meet Gabriel at his work Christmas party where we very soon realise that this is one seriously unhappy guy: ‘He’s got no family to go home to, no friends to vent to… tears overwhelm him quickly, violent sobs wracking his body as he curls up tighter on himself’.
Into this picture of misery appears (literally), Felix who introduces himself as an elf and a wish augur: ‘I read the energy that wishes emit and interpret it’. He explains that he ‘heard’ Gabriel’s wish for a hug and decided to oblige. Not unsurprisingly there are humorous snatches from this point on as Gabriel tries to make sense of what’s going on: ‘Gabe blinks. He got an insecure elf for Christmas’.
The story then flits from scenes of domestic bliss (breakfast in bed and snuggles in front of the TV), to moments of unmistakable homoeroticism: ‘Gabe maybe had a little crush on an elf. A Christmas elf’ before the relationship is established and the story ends happily and full of hope for the future.
If you’re after a short, quirky, very different kind of Christmas read this is definitely one to try!
The story is available to pre-order on kindle for only £1.97 at the moment. It’s expected publication date is 17th December: The Wish Augur