Author: Rhys Ford
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reece Notley
Caroline’s Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Beverley’s Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: June 5, 2015
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: M/M Romance
Dead women tell no tales.
Former cat burglar Rook Stevens stole many a priceless thing in the past, but he’s never been accused of taking a life—until now. It was one thing to find a former associate inside Potter’s Field, his pop culture memorabilia shop, but quite another to stumble across her dead body.
Detective Dante Montoya thought he’d never see Rook Stevens again—not after his former partner’d falsified evidence to entrap the jewelry thief and Stevens walked off scot-free. So when he tackled a fleeing murder suspect, Dante was shocked to discover the blood-covered man was none other than the thief he’d fought to put in prison and who still made his blood sing.
Rook is determined to shake loose the murder charge against him, even if it means putting distance between him and the rugged Cuban-Mexican detective who brought him down. If one dead con artist wasn’t bad enough, others soon follow, and as the bodies pile up around Rook’s feet, he’s forced to reach out to the last man he’d expect to believe in his innocence—and the only man who’s ever gotten under Rook’s skin.
Rhys Ford is an auto buy for me for a number of reasons the main one being I just love her writing. Murder and Mayhem is like some of her previous books where we have an alpha male who doesn’t automatically get what he wants and a bit of murder and mystery to keep us guessing.
Dante Montoya has a little bit of everything for me. He is dark and brooding, intent on getting his man, even if initially he wanted to see him behind bars but he also has a soft and quite vulnerable side especially when he was around his uncle.
Rook Stevens owns a pop memorabilia shop in Potter’s Field but his life hasn’t always been so mundane. He has left his previous life as a cat burglar behind but it seems his past has come back to haunt him in more ways than one. His night isn’t going so well when he finds a former associate dead in his shop but it takes a turn for the worse when he is arrested by Dante for murder, of all the cops to arrest him this one has a grudge.
This is a real enemy to lover’s story with a massive boost of lust that initially kicks things off. The romance runs alongside a sometime confusing mystery but it is one that needs to be solved quickly before Rook finds himself dead as the body count seems to mount daily. There are a lot of characters to keep track of and I had to go back a couple of times to make sure things were clear in my head.
With the grudge that Dante held I thought he would be the one that found their relationship most difficult and I was completely wrong. Rook has a lot of demons he needs to put to bed going all the way back to his childhood. His mother may have been useless but I did find myself with a soft spot for his temperamental grandfather.
As this is book 1 in a new series I really hope we get to see more of Dante and Rook. First books are like teasers and tasters, they have a lot to live up to and they need to pull the reader in. Murder and Mayhem certainly pulled me in and I look forward to book 2.
A riot of imaginative serial killings, and cop / cat burglar banter with a few twists. The addition of references to The Princess Bride, and Rook’s treasures from various stalwarts of popular culture made the nerdy side of me very happy.
I love Rhys Ford’s writing and books, but I’m sorry to say – the editing – let this novel down a bit. I can overlook the odd spelling mistake, or grammatical error – we all have them, and they do not distract or detract.
However, there were a lot of long convoluted sentences, which contained wrong tenses or odd phrasings, which sadly did mean I had to read passages several times, and did detract from the flow of the story.
Having said that I loved the characters particularly, Archie and Manny – well written, humorous and intriguing. I also enjoyed the development of a relationship between the two MCs Dante and Rook, they remained who they were, but subtly altered from their exchanges and time together. It’s a confident writer who can allow their characters to adapt and change, in line with their experiences in a story. Rook’s character especially, was affected by what was happening to him rather than just reacting.
Although not my favourite of Rhys’ work this is still a good crime and romance story with good twists.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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