Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Tops Down Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote Blog Tour

Will Rowan’s festival fling with sexy dancer Seth lead to something more permanent?

Rowan is stuck at a folk festival helping out a mate, and it really isn’t his scene. The yoga and singing workshops are bad enough, but morris dancing is the final straw. Bearded men with beer guts prancing around wearing bells—who wants to watch that?

All Rowan’s preconceptions are shattered when he meets Seth—a morris dancer, and the stuff Rowan’s fantasies are made of. Seth persuades Rowan to come to a dancing workshop, and Rowan’s willing to do whatever it takes to get to know Seth better. The attraction is mutual, and a lesson filled with innuendo and flirting leads to an incredible night together.

When Rowan arrives home, he’s gutted to find that Seth has given him the wrong phone number. Assuming Seth did it on purpose, Rowan resolves to forget about him. But fate—and friends—conspire to get them back together. Will they manage to stay in step this time around?

A much shorter version of this story was originally published in the Not Quite Shakespeare Anthology by Dreamspinner Press. This version has been revised and extended. Almost half of it is new content.

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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

3.5 stars

Morris Dancers? Seriously? Sadly, even Jay Northcote struggles to make Morris Dancing sexy. I warmed to Seth quite quickly, but the dancing scenes made me cringe. And giggle a little. It was a conditioned response and I couldn’t help it!

In this short story, Rowan meets a gorgeous fantasy man while working at a folk festival. Falling in love (or lust, really) at a festival is a pretty common fantasy and a not uncommon happening. Here, the sex isn’t terribly private, the relationship isn’t terribly deep, and the chance of meeting up again after the festival isn’t terribly good.

I found the unusual mix of fantasy and comic realism entertaining but not terribly sexy. This story lacks the emotional intensity of the more sexually explicit Housemates series and it also lacks the depth of character development I’ve come to expect from Northcote’s more ‘grown up’ stories. The length of this story is somewhere between short story and novella. For me, it’s a bit too long for titillating erotica and a bit too short for me to feel a real connection to Seth and Rowan.

My expectations of Jay Northcote’s writing are probably unreasonably high. This is a fun, sexy story but for me it is missing a little of the magic I expect from this author’s stories. (And I’m still struggling with the Morris Dancers!)

This is a fun read, especially if you have any experience of Morris dancing! Actually, anyone who has watched Chitty Chitty Bang Bang should remember Dick Van Dyke when he joins them on stage at the fair.

Rowan's cheeky comments about Morris Men gets him in hot water... but luckily with a man who definitely fills all his fantasy requirements. Seth is big and tattooed and it would seem that he likes Rowan too. An error causes a problem, but luckily, they both have friends who want the fantasy to remain a reality.

Amazingly, you will get a level of insight into the skill of Morris dancing as well as a very enjoyable and passionate start to a new romance.

Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.

One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.

Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.

Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.

Connect with Jay

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Tops Down Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote to read and review for this tour.

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