Review: Tops Down Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote

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?

Oh story. You are so darn adorable and delicious.

Tops Down Bottoms Up is Jay Northcote at his most perfectly sweet. This is the ideal story to read when life is just too much and you want to get caught up in some pure love and lust. Heavier on the lust, which is legit as it is a shorter story so the lust is completely believable and you just know the road to love is smooth and angst free.

There’s a meet cute set up with a unique take that caught my interest from the beginning. As I have grown up on the American side of the pond I had never heard of a Morris Dancer and the author does a great job of educating by showing. It made me Google things. I generally have the attention span of a gnat and once I settle in to a book it’s going to have to take something seriously interesting or filthy for me to get my lazy buns going in another direction. So yeah, I Googled, I know stuff about Morris Dancers now, thanks Jay, that was fun.

Rowan and Seth (the Morris Dancer) meet at a festival and the eye boning started right from the get go. Rowan manages to put his foot in his mouth almost immediately and a friendly challenge is thrown down. In order to save face and possibly get closer to Seth’s face, Rowan agrees to attend a Morris Dancing demonstration/training session.

Flirty cuteness ensues and it’s obvious these two need to get some alone time. While the story is shorter and, like I said, leaning more towards the lust than the love, there is still something between the two of them that makes you believe in a potential future for them. Sure, they really need to get in one anothers britches, but their banter showed a real connection. I loved their conversations and flirtatious moments.

I wouldn’t say there’s a misunderstanding, but there is an unfortunate circumstance that throws in a smidge of angst that keeps their story from being too perfect. And even though I couldn’t really know either of them too well by this point, I had the confidence in their attraction to know that a happy ending was heading my way.

And it was happy. And the way it came about was completely believable and the warm fuzzies I got were not just from their reunion but from the friends both these guys have. It says a lot about a character when they are surrounded by solid friendships. Just another little nugget that makes me believe in the road to love for Seth and Rowan.

Tops Down Bottoms Up is going on my feel-good reread shelf to bust out when I need a book hug.

**a copy of this story was provided for an honest review**

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