Rating: 5 stars out of 5 ★★★★★
From the moment former LAPD detective Bobby Dawson spots Ichiro Tokugawa, he knows the man is trouble. And not just because the much younger Japanese inker is hot, complicated, and pushes every one of Bobby’s buttons. No, Ichi is trouble because he’s Cole McGinnis’s younger brother and off-limits in every possible way. And Bobby knows that even before Cole threatens to kill him for looking Ichi’s way. But despite his gut telling him Ichi is bad news, Bobby can’t stop looking… or wanting.
Ichi was never one to play by the rules. Growing up in Japan as his father’s heir, he’d been bound by every rule imaginable until he had enough and walked away from everything to become his own man. Los Angeles was supposed to be a brief pitstop before he moved on, but after connecting with his American half-brothers, it looks like a good city to call home for a while—if it weren’t for Bobby Dawson.
Bobby is definitely a love-them-and-leave-them type, a philosophy Ichi whole-heartedly agrees with. Family was as much of a relationship as Ichi was looking for, but something about the gruff and handsome Bobby Dawson that makes Ichi want more.
Much, much more.
Ever read a book and fall completely in love with a secondary couple? Then start wishing the author would write a book just for them? All those wishes must have hit Rhys Ford pretty darn hard or filled up her email box because Down and Dirty is a reader’s wish come true. I know its certainly mine.
Bobby Dawson was already a character that I loved to read about. He’s complicated, intelligent, been bruised by his past and poor choices. He’s flawed, he bleeds and I understand him. Then Ichiro Tokugawa appears in the series, a new brother but bringing his own familiar heavy emotional baggage into the already seriously weighed down McGinnis family. But there was something fresh about Ichi, something shiny (Rhys Ford’s descriptions have a way of making you feel and see the characters, not just read them). So I understood immediately why Bobby was pulled towards Ichi like a magpie towards a newly found sparkle. The connection flows bothways and its powerful enough that others notice as well.
And start to interfere. For the best of course.
I loved this book for so many reasons. One that might not first jump to mind is that I get a second look at many scenes from the other stories from a different perspective. This time I see it from Bobby and Ichi’s point of view. The scenes from the waiting room, the phone calls…the impact is heightened even though I know what has happened and what the outcome will be. Why? Because this time I see the shock waves spreading out from the initial event (still no spoilers) , from person to person, something missing in the original story. It magnifies the event and the emotional trauma not really looked at closely before. And given its due as it was here.
Bobby’s background, his family and his current actions were all finally explored. Rhys Ford made Bobby a man at a juncture at his life. His realistic look at where he stood, his past, how people thought about him, how he thought about himself, did he deserve a future…so well done and equally so moving. If I hadn’t cared about Bobby before, I certainly would have now.
And the revelations continued with Ichi. A phone call from his father in Japan sets off a tumbling set of disclosures about his family life in Japan, his father, the reason Ichi left for his brothers and the States. If we thought Jae’s family and culture were complicated, this glimpse into Ichi’s life gives us enough of a comparison to realize that our culture might be very simple by perspective.
So what happens when two bruised, complex men are drawn towards each other, no matter what their families want? The hot, sexy and so satisfactory findings are spread out here in Down and Dirty. I hope its not the only Bobby and Ichi book to come out of this series but if it is, I’m content. With just one more.
I love this book and adore this series. Now you can also listen to it in audiobook, something I have just ventured into. Now you have three different ways to dive into this book and series.
Love a multicultural romance? Love layered men with a raw authenticity about them? Hot, sexy and real? Look no further than Down and Dirty by Rhys Ford as well as the entire Cole McGinnis series. I can’t recommend them highly enough.
Cover art by Reece Notley. The artist continues the series branding with the color tone and style but does a great job changing it up with the models and backdrop. Love it.
*Review Note: We started the year with this book and we’ll end with it in December! A Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Double Dip Review: A Sammy Review: Down and Dirty by Rhys Ford January 2015
ebook, 200 pages
Published January 2nd 2015 by Dreamspinner Press LLC
Original TitleDown and Dirty
ISBN 1632166151 (ISBN13: 9781632166159)
SeriesCole McGinnis #5
CharactersIchiro Tokugawa, Robert (Bobby) James Dawso