Canadian Shots by Drew Zachary
Torquere Press
Gay Anthology
ISBN: 1-934166-17-0
Reviewed by Cassie

   

 

The Rock Shot

Bartender Sean has been eying musician Mike all night.  When everyone’s gone to watch the fireworks, he’s hoping to make some fireworks of his own…

The Rock Shot is an entertaining read.  Sean’s distraction as he watches Mike is amusing, and the sex is very hot! 

 

PEI Shot

Shop clerk Chris has the day off and is spending it going around town speaking to friends and just hanging out.  He gets hungry and finds a vacant spot at a table occupied by grad student Marshall.  Will Marshall take Chris up on the tour he offers?

PEI Shot had some adorable characters.  Marshall is smart, easily flustered, and often tongue-tied.  Closeted Chris is sweet and much bolder.  I enjoyed seeing these two come together.

 

Nova Scotia Shot

Experienced Dodge is at a pub, debating trying to find a man to pick up, when he spots a young man sitting alone.  He joins Sid at his table, and they share an appetizer.  Will they end up sharing much more?

Nova Scotia Shot has some great character development for a story of its length.  Dodge seems like just a pick-up artist at the beginning, shallow and out for sex.  As the story progresses, and he talks to Sid, Dodge’s thinking begins to change.  I loved the tenderness Dodge showed the much less experienced Sid, and it added a nice dash of sweetness to the story.

 

Montreal Shot

Even though it’s Canada Day, Alex is in the library working on a paper rather than celebrating.  He meets Chad, who’s also working on a paper, and sparks fly.  He and Chad are going to discover something very surprising in the stacks...

Holy cow, Montreal Shot is hot!  I won’t give away what Alex and Chad discover, but it surprised the heck out of me (in a good way).  This story shows a bit from both characters’ perspectives, which adds depth. 

 

Quebec City Shot

Thirty-year-old Charlie is backpacking across Canada when he stops to eat in Quebec City.  He meets younger pizzeria employee Soren and they hit it off.  Charlie would like to teach Soren a few things.  Will Soren take him up on it? 

Soren’s initiation into lovemaking in Quebec City Shot is very enjoyable to read.  Charlie makes a great mentor.  This one had a bit of a bittersweet edge to it, however, as there didn’t seem to be a happy ending in the cards for these two.

 

Ottawa Shot

Tyler is roaming the Canada Day celebration in search of water that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.  He meets sexy Bobby, who offers to give him a bottle for a kiss…

After reading Ottawa Shot, I’m never going to think of fireworks or maple leaves in the same way!  Bobby and Tyler are very uninhibited characters, and the ending had the promise of more than just HFN.

 

Toronto Shot

Parker is at a gay bar for Canada Day Fetish Night, looking for someone to play with.  He meets up with Ian and his pet, Darcy, and lots of threesome fun ensues.

Toronto Shot is all about the sex.  There’s not much plot or character development here.  Although the sex is very well-written, this wasn’t one of my favorites in the anthology because the characters were all out for sex and not much else.

 

Served in Alberta, Canada

Ranch cook Jimmy is planning to sneak away and be alone after finishing kitchen cleanup, but it doesn’t work out that way.  To his surprise, big, sexy cowboy Henry comes in to thank him for making such good food.  Henry also invites him to go sit somewhere and watch the fireworks.  Will shy Jimmy accept?

Served in Alberta, Canada had two incredibly appealing characters.  Jimmy is shy, and they are both tongue-tied and awkward at the beginning of the story.  Jimmy’s nervous babbling was cute and funny.  The love scenes are sweet and emotional, and this one had a real happily-ever-after.  This was one of my favorites in the anthology.

 

Vancouver Shot

Photographer Dixon Creed is taking pictures of a Canada Day celebration when he comes across a guy sunbathing in only a Speedo.  Dixon asks if he can take the guy’s picture, and Brandon agrees.  Together, they find out how much Brandon likes taking direction…

Vancouver Shot shows the explosive coming together of a voyeur and an exhibitionist.  Dixon is very good at directing, and there are some toys involved.  Not only is this story hot, but there’s also a nice ending, which I appreciated.

 

Northern BC Shot

Tree-planter Meat goes off to drink, smoke, and be alone for a while.  Brothers Tim and Terry come upon him when he’s in a compromising position.  To his surprise, rather than being shocked or disgusted they join in on the fun.

Northern BC Shot was by far my least favorite story in the anthology.  The brothers’ angle was nice, but other than that there wasn’t much to like here.  Meat was a thoroughly unappealing character, and the brothers came off as little more than caricatures.  The sex scenes didn’t do much for me because I didn’t like the people involved.  I think the anthology would have been much stronger without the inclusion of this tale.

 

Hudson’s Bay Shot

Watson Green is about to start a week of camping in the wilderness alone, with only the supplies on his back.  He and fellow camper Geoff Quinn decide to stick together.  What happens when they find out both of them are gay?

Hudson’s Bay Shot was a very enjoyable story.  Although I personally hate camping, reading about other people camping is fun.  I liked watching the two men work together and then come together in more important ways.  Watson’s inability to read people, or flirt, made for some hilarious moments.  Best of all, there was a happy ending. 

 

The stories in Canadian Shots were divided into five chapters based on where in Canada they took place.  Each one was prefaced with a cute fake shot recipe detailing the “ingredients” of the story, and many of them are set on Canada Day.  Many of these tales are mostly sex, albeit very hot sex, so be prepared!  Drew Zachary does manage to work in some emotion and sweetness, but if you’re looking for major character development, happily-ever-afters in every story, and depth, look elsewhere.  What you’ll find here is happily-for-now at best (although there are a couple of exceptions), without much character development.  However, if you’re looking for hot, quick, fun, and sometimes surprising reads, Canadian Shots is the book for you.    

     

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