The Pillar

The Pillar - Kim Fielding

TW: For extensive detail on era-specific criminal punishment, slavery, and mentions of rape and war.

 

This reminded me a lot of Treasure, Ms. Fielding's freebie from the Love Has No Boundaries event, minus the fantasy elements:
http://www.mmromancegroup.com/treasure-by-kim-fielding/

 

There are a lot of parallels between the two stories. MC1 is an outsider to town, learns to look out for themselves and slowly befriends the townsfolk, who adopt him as their own. MC2 is also an outsider, found gravely injured by MC1, who rescues and tends the man back to health. When MC2's past comes back for him, MC1 and the townsfolk come to his aid. There are some obvious differences in the characters' circumstances and the actual climax is quite different, but both stories more or less pan out the same way and with the same results. I'm not saying this is a bad thing, or that Ms. Fielding lacks imagination or anything. Just that the familiarity kind of took the tension out of the story for me a little.

 

This is well written, as are all of Ms. Fielding's story, and she really has a way with atmosphere and environment that makes you feel like you're watching the events unfold in front of you. The romance is a little rushed, especially considering everything Boro has been through. I don't feel like his issues were really addressed at all. They were talked about, but then they're swept aside more or less until the plot required them to be an issue again. If Boro really had been through everything he claimed he'd been through, then his psychological recovery, at the very least, should've taken much, much longer. I couldn't quite suspend my disbelief enough to feel like the romance was legit and not just some knee-jerk reaction on Boro's part

especially since he could never quite embrace the fact he was a freed man now, and ends up asking Faris to "own" him if only for appearances so they can live together.

(show spoiler)

 

 

If you're looking for a hurt/comfort story, I would recommend Treasure over this one.