Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Book Review: Tramps and Thieves by Rhys Ford

Title: Tramps and Thieves
Series: Murder and Mayhem: Book Two
Author: Rhys Ford
Release Date: September 18, 2017
Category: Mystery/Suspense
Pages: 210

Whoever said blood was thicker than water never stood in a pool of it.
Retiring from stealing priceless treasures seemed like a surefire way for Rook Stevens to stay on the right side of the law. The only cop in his life should have been his probably-boyfriend, Los Angeles Detective Dante Montoya, but that’s not how life—his life—is turning out. Instead, Rook ends up not only standing in a puddle of his cousin Harold’s blood but also being accused of Harold’s murder… and sleeping with Harold’s wife.
For Dante, loving the former thief means his once-normal life is now a sea of chaos, especially since Rook seems incapable of staying out of trouble—or keeping trouble from following him home. When Rook is tagged as a murder suspect by a narrow-focused West LA detective, Dante steps in to pull his lover out of the quagmire Rook’s landed in.
When the complicated investigation twists around on them, the dead begin to stack up, forcing the lovers to work together. Time isn’t on their side, and if they don’t find the killer before another murder, Dante will be visiting Rook in his prison cell—or at his grave.

3.5 Stars!

What I Loved: I loved the chemistry between Rook and Dante. These guys are so great together and not just in the bedroom but out as well. I loved their banter and the way you could tell that Rook drove Dante insane but he couldn't get enough of him. Since Rook is a bit of a P.I.T.A (and super endearing), I had to feel sorry for Dante and the cross he had to bear. But the two of them are a lot of fun (as fun as "serious" Dante can be). They are definitely together in this story and it's not the same back and forth relationship angst we've seen before, so it leaves the focus more on the romance, mystery and action.

What I Liked: This is a pretty good whodunnit. I didn't completely see where it was headed and I felt like it was planned out very well. I was intrigued throughout the entire story.

What I Didn't Like: Purple Prose. I am going to be honest and I may be in the minority but I still have to say it. I felt that some of the descriptions in this book went a little over the top. It took 4 paragraphs just to describe a night in L.A. because of the flowery and extravagant prose used.

***LOS ANGELES glittered amber and blue behind him, the skyline fanning out around the surrounding low-lying hills. The springtime night was cool, a slight bite to the air with a promise of frosty morning lingering on the edge of the horizon. Tucked into the canyons and rises, the upper reaches of Hollywood were far from the loud brashness of its boulevards and the garish desperation of its more well-known neighborhoods. Still, the city strained to be heard in the hills. Just past dusk, the night held a hint of water in it, chased with a metallic taint from the canyon’s gritty dust. Another sniff brought in the rasp of sage and pine, a sweet, smoky aroma tickling his nose. The city was an amber-and-ebony serpentine sprawl around the hills, its golden palette dotted with sparkling gemstones of traffic lights and neon signs. And despite the peaceful lull around him, Los Angeles refused to be still. The unmarked car’s rolled-down windows let the city in, taking a bit of the edge off of Montoya’s restlessness. A whisper of early-evening traffic from the distant streets fed Los Angeles’s constant murmur, a tumble of rolling whooshes with an occasional horn popping an aggrieved warning. Somewhere below, lost in the city’s bowels, a siren chased through the streets, an unseen ambulance warbling its mournful cries. A long, meandering drive through the hills was just what he needed, an odd Zen Dante could only find when surrounded by the scent of gun oil, abused police equipment, and the dubious remains of Hank’s lunch tucked under the front seat of their department-issued vehicle.***

So, this is beautifully written and it's more than obvious that the author is a very talented writer. However, I found it a bit distracting. I wanted to get to the story and I felt like I had to trudge through more descriptive paragraphs than actual dialogue or action and that truly annoyed me.

Overall, this was a good story and I would most definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys Rhys Ford. It's a good mystery and the characters are lovable. I just wish the flowery, overly descriptive writing could have been toned down.

***Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by the author/publisher for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.***

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