Review: Tops Down, Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote


Note: This ARC was provided by the author via Signal Boost Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Originally released as part of the multi-authored Not Quite Shakespeare anthology released by Dreamspinner Press in 2014, Tops Down, Bottoms Up has undergone revision and has been extended by author Jay Northcote. Helping out his best friend was a given for Rowan, but there isn't really anything at the folk festival they're at to capture his interest. When he hears that there'll be morris dancers prancing about, Rowan lets his less than stellar opinion of them known rather loudly while at a pub. One particular dancer named Seth overhears him and points out that not all morris dancers are pudgy, bearded old men. Seth follows that up with invitation for Rowan to join a workshop. One lesson leads to flirting which ends with a hook-up. Both hope for more, but when Rowan tries to call the number Seth's given, it turns out to be a wrong number. Is this it or will a bit of friendly intervention save the day?

This novella was a quick and easy read, with an embarrassing meet-cute that leads to some healthy flirtation and much more between Rowan and Seth. I wouldn't necessarily consider these two as a love match meant for a lifetime, but I do think that they clicked, although Rowan's unwillingness to do something as simple as send a Facebook message to Seth's friends made me wonder just how much he really wanted to be with the guy again. One message could have seriously saved both of them--and their best friends who had to see them mope--a great deal of grief. Speaking of friends, Max and Deb, Rowan's and Seth's closest friends, respectively, were standouts, especially with what they ended up doing to help both their friends out. All in all, Tops Down, Bottoms Up is a satisfying enough read if you're looking for a quick M/M fictional fix with a happy-for-now ending. It gets 3.5 stars. ♥

Date Read: 18 August 2017

Learn more about Jay Northcote.

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