Blog Tour + Giveaway: Rebel (415 Ink #1) by Rhys Ford

Rhys Ford is in the clubhouse and taking over the reins! Join her on the Rebel (415 Ink) tour and read today's exclusive content! Plus, you can enter in her giveaway to win a $20 gift certificate! Good luck!

Take it away, Rhys! (Happy New Year!)

Hello and welcome to the 415 Ink: Rebel Blog Tour. I’d like to say I’m Rhys Ford, your host but the truth is, I am merely a stealer of space and time. Their space, your time. BUT I hope I can make it worth your while.
Because dudes, I’ve got a book I want to tell you about.

If you know me at all, you know I have a few tattoos and well, have a hardcore love for art. Skin art to be exact. It’s a difficult medium and well, there’s a culture surrounding it as well. Being a tattoo artist is more than a profession, it truly is a calling, or it is for the great artists, the ones who push at the boundaries of skin and ink and do fantastical things on a living canvas.

The 415 Ink series hopefully will capture a part of that culture and also showcase five foster brothers who have made their own family. Set in San Francisco, I will introduce you to each of the five in a series of books where they find love and in some cases, their true path in life. The first, Rebel, is about Gus, the true middle kid in the bunch, and the man whose love he’d won, lost and hopefully will love again.

As all of my blog tours, I want to present you with something unique at each stop as well as a giveaway. So, for each blog, I will give you a story (or part of a story as I’ve split most into two pieces) about a tattoo… involving a character from one of my series. Check out the blog stop list to get a sneak peek at the characters!

The giveaway? You’ll be entering to win a $20USD gift certificate to the online retailer of your choice!

Now, onto the tales of tattoos and where you can find Rebel, on sale December 29th through Dreamspinner, Amazon and other fine bookstores.


Los Angeles — Cole McGinnis and Ichi Tokugawa
Part One of Two

“I thought this was supposed to be a simple job!” Cole yelled over his shoulder. “Go left! We can get some cover in those bushes!”

When dealing with my older brother Cole the phrase hindsight is 20-20 always comes to mind. The simplest things always seem to go wrong and for some reason, either a gun, knife, or fist fight breaks out in his immediate vicinity. Sometimes, it is even a combination of two or more of those events.

In this case, it was a brawl but the evening was young yet so there was still time to add more elements to the fuckery Cole delivered us into.

Technically, he was right. It was supposed to be a simple job. I know because I was the one who hired him to do it.

“We can’t —” I began to yell at him, but he’d already made the turn and we plunged through a nest of tangled hedges, trying to get away from the small mob of angry Japanese elders chasing us.

There was no talking to Cole when he was in full samurai mode, or at least that is how I thought of it. If he’d been pure Japanese and not gay, my father would have taken him into the Tokugawa fold and made Cole his heir. He was everything I was not, something that became more and more apparent the longer I got to know him. There was a fatalistic elegance to his desire for justice and truth, an unwillingness to turn his back on a tenuous situation even though it meant he could come to some harm.

When I’d first met our eldest brother, Mike, he told me our middle brother led with his heart instead of his head. Since my first impression of Mike was of a man who took precautions and planned out every situation down to the last detail, I took his words with a grain of salt — another Cole-appropriate saying — and expected our shared brother to be simply a bit more relaxed in nature.

What Mike meant to say was Cole Kenjiro McGinnis was bat shit fucking nuts and would run into a burning building if someone even whispered there might be a kitten inside.

I knew that. I hadn’t believed it until the day someone began shooting into a crowd of people on a Los Angeles street and my beloved, crazy older brother ran towards the gunfire.

My life up until that point had been exciting and risky — or so I thought — but in a blink of an eye and without any warning, I found myself thrust into Cole’s world and it was terrifying. I’d never tasted fear before. I’d felt it. I’d had its sharp fingers run over my skin but the astringent bitterness of its kiss in my mouth was something I’d never imagined. It paralyzed me. I was man enough to admit it afterwards but in that moment, all I could think of was… I didn’t want to lose my brother.

That’s when I discovered that Cole had a greater calling… had a greater courage than I did.

He was also foolish, reckless and didn’t have a single scrap of self-preservation in his entire body, but he faced down monsters and demons for the people who couldn’t… even when he didn’t have to.

But we were both in agreement that when faced with a band of enraged, mostly-retired yakuza from Kyoto who’d come over from Japan for a funeral it was better to run than reason things out. Considering the grieving widow had led us to the back room with the intent on showing me the deceased man’s antique tattooing implements and had been surprised to find his friends gathered around his recently de-coffined body laid out on a table, Cole had been remarkably calm. Even when the yakuza grew incensed when the dead man’s widow told them we were there to buy his entire private collection despite their insisting she had no right to sell them off.

Cole’s Japanese extended to knowing what kind of ramen to order and how to pronounce our various names, so he stood by blissfully unaware when the yakuza began to threaten to use our guts to strangle us with and only seemed to know something had gone wrong when I backed up into him and told him to run.

My brother… he is very good at adapting to changing situations and facing down death without panicking.

He didn’t ask questions when one of them threw a punch at him or blinked when another drew out a small, sharp blade and tried to gut me. Cole realized we were blocked off from the door we’d come in, so he’d picked up a chair and threw it through a picture window to give us an exit and told me to hurry up. There were no recriminations or blame. Just a casual flat out run through the twisted streets above Little Tokyo.

I appreciated his restraint especially since I’d been the one to put us in the middle of a make shift abattoir while the former criminals were gathered around their friend’s embalmed corpse, discussing how they would skin him to preserve the decades of intricate tattoos.

“I think we are behind a school or something,” Cole said, not even panting hard despite the full trot he’d fallen into. I knew his stamina came from the miles he ran with my husband Bobby as well as the regular boxing sparring matches they had every week, but I still hated him for it. Grabbing my arm, Cole yanked me through a slender break in a standard of juniper trees. “Ichi, this way.”

“Do you even know where you are going?” I was trying not to breathe heavily, but I needed to take a moment to suck some air into my lungs. Once again, I made a promise to myself to stop smoking kreteks and maybe work out a bit more, but I knew it was a lie.

“Sure.” As in all things, Cole sounded confident.

I knew this was also a lie.

Especially since we’d made a wrong turn at some point and the sidewalk ended.

We, however, were going too fast to stop.

There was something about falling twenty feet at a dead run. The momentum we picked up was fierce, and the hill was a sharp, unexpected catastrophe. One moment I had solid ground beneath my sneakers, and the next I was flying.

I was airborne for about three… maybe four glorious seconds when gravity snatched me and threw me down into the ground.

That was when I discovered Los Angeles’ highway landscaping crews did not clear all of the rocks from the ground before they rooted ice plants into the soft soil.

We landed hard, rolling over slick, spongy succulents and my spine felt every jut of rock embedded in the soil on the way down. Luckily for us, the hill ended in a gradual slope and we tumbled onto a broad sidewalk lining one of the busier Los Angeles avenues. A truck’s horn blared in my ear, but I didn’t care because the ground was not moving beneath my back and despite the aches and pains in my limbs, I was just glad to be alive.

It also seems like the yakuza had stopped chasing us because I couldn’t hear any Japanese other than the swearing going on in my own head.

“You alive?” My brother asked from his prone position next to me. He began to sit up then probably decided it would be too much effort because he lay back down with a groan. “I’m going to take a minute.”

“I’m fine. Just … bruised probably,” I wheezed out, staring up at the streetlamp directly above us. “Baka, after all of that, I didn’t get the dead guy’s antique tattoo instruments. I was supposed to meet his widow.”

“Well, if it was that rolled up bundle of cloth on the table next to his leg, I’ve got that in my jacket.” Cole leaned his head back, meeting my eyes. “And if it’s not, then I owe the guy I kicked in the balls to let go of it a really huge apology.”


Rebel: 415 Ink, Book One
The hardest thing a rebel can do isn’t standing up for something — it’s standing up for himself.

Life takes delight in stabbing Gus Scott in the back when he least expects it. After years of running from his past, present and the dismal future every social worker predicted for him, Karma delivers the one thing Gus could never—would never—turn his back on; a son from a one-night stand he’d had after a devastating break-up three years ago.

Returning to San Francisco and to 415 Ink, his family’s tattoo shop, gave him the perfect shelter to battle his personal demons and get himself together… until the firefighter who’d broken him walked back into Gus’s life.
For Rey Montenegro, tattoo artist Gus Scott was an elusive brass ring, a glittering prize he hadn’t the strength or flexibility to hold onto. Severing his relationship with the mercurial tattoo artist hurt but Gus hadn’t wanted the kind of domestic life Rey craved, leaving Rey with an aching chasm in his soul.

When Gus’s life and world starts to unravel, Rey helps him pick up the pieces, and Gus wonders if that forever Rey wants is more than just a dream.

Purchase 415 Ink: Rebel at…
Dreamspinner Press:

Catch up with the stories and be sure to hit up each of these blogs for a chance to win at every stop! Check out the pairings preview and plan your visit!

12.26 Joyfully Jay (Kane, Part One)
12.27 Sinfully Gay Romance (Kane, Part Two)
12.28 It’s About The Book (Damien and Miki, Part One)
12.29 The Novel Approach (Damien and Miki, Part Two)
12.31 Boy Meets Boy Reviews (Cole and Ichi, Part One)
1.1 Ndulgent Bloggers (Cole and Ichi, Part Two)
1.2 Smexy Books (Gus and Bear)
1.3 The Blogger Girls (Kane and Miki)

About Rhys Ford
Rhys Ford is an award-winning author with several long-running LGBT+ mystery, thriller, paranormal, and urban fantasy series and was a 2016 LAMBDA finalist with her novel, Murder and Mayhem. She is published by Dreamspinner Press and DSP Publications.

She’s also quite skeptical about bios without a dash of something personal and really, who doesn’t mention their cats, dog and cars in a bio? She shares the house with Yoshi, a grumpy tuxedo cat and Harley, an off-kilter flower-faced grey and white cat-dog , as well as a ginger cairn terrorist named Gus. Rhys is also enslaved to the upkeep a 1979 Pontiac Firebird and enjoys murdering make-believe people

Rhys’ Blog:
Rhys Ford’s books can found at Dreamspinner Press (, DSP Publications ( and all major online book stores.

Enter for a chance to win $20 USD gift certificate: winner's choice. Giveaway ends January 6th, 2018. Good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This is such an exciting post - can’t wait for the next installment!! I also look forward to start reading Rebel on 2018.
    Happy New Year, y’all. :)

  2. Thanks for the story, happy new year Rhys!

  3. Cole & Ichi for the New Year! Fantastic! Happy 2018 to all. xoxo

  4. Oh Cole - how I have missed you!

  5. OMG! Cole's my favorite. I love him.😍

  6. Oh boy! Can't wait to read the second part of this one.

  7. Cole is awesome and I love Ichi’s sense of humor can’t wait for more😍

  8. Loving these stories! Thanks!

  9. Wow that was great I'm breathless after that! I can't wait until the next post.

  10. Hahahahaha. I love the callback to Cole and his perchance for finding trouble. Rebel was amazing!!!! (just finished reading it) and I can't wait for the second book in the series!!!!!

  11. Ichi should know that it's never as simple as it seems. :) Fortunately for him, if not for Cole, Cole has a lot of experience in running for his life. It's the knowing when to stop running part that the guys need to work on. :) One of my favorites is Cole running from the cheating grandmother and her paramour. Another is him running while holding the poodle he'd kidnapped back from a kidnapper. It never ends well for him.

  12. I look forward to part 2. And Happy New Year!

  13. Thanks for a little more Cole and Ichi. Can’t wait for a free few minutes to start reading Rebel.

  14. Cole and his death wishes. LOL!

  15. Being around Cole is so hazardous to the health. But we love him anyway!

  16. Omg! I love Ichi and Cole! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜†πŸ€£

  17. Such a treat on New Year day to read about Cole & Ichi! Thank you Rhys Ford. I love all these little pieces of their lives. Have a wonderful new year everyone!

  18. Always happy to see Cole!


  19. Loving the story. Thank you for this! Happy New Year!

  20. Loving the mini stories. Thank you!

  21. Thank you so much for letting us have these little visits with the characters.