Loving Kim Jae-Min isn't always easy: Jae is gun-shy about being openly homosexual. Ex-cop turned private investigator Cole McGinnis doesn't know any other way to be. Still, he understands where Jae is coming from. Traditional Korean men aren't gay-at least not usually where people can see them.
But Cole can't spend too much time unraveling his boyfriend's issues. He has a job to do. When a singer named Scarlet asks him to help find Park Dae-Hoon, a gay Korean man who disappeared nearly two decades ago, Cole finds himself submerged in the tangled world of rich Korean families, where obligation and politics mean sacrificing happiness to preserve corporate empires. Soon the bodies start piling up without rhyme or reason. With every step Cole takes toward locating Park Dae-Hoon, another person meets their demise-and someone Cole loves could be next on the murderer's list.
©2012 Rhys Ford (P)2014 Dreamspinner Press
This is the second book in the Cole McGinnis series by Rhys Ford and one that I'd previously read in pixels and enjoyed. Once again, Cole is up to his neck in it - being shot at, thrown up on, getting to know his boyfriend Jae-Min better and working on a case brought to him by Scarlet. Not to mention having to deal with his dad and step-mother at an awful dinner (go Mike! that's all I'm saying).
The story was engaging, there were some emotional moments as well as some laugh out loud sections and Greg Tremblay's excellent narration really did the characters justice for me. The pacing of the non-dialogue parts came across as much more fluid and natural than in book one so all in all a very enjoyable listen.
I'm going to break from tradition and start listening to book three before I've read it; and I've got the rest of the series (& some of Rhys' other books) ready to go too.
Definitely recommend this if you like a bit of mystery, PIs, snarky boyfriends, bigots getting a slap down, spicy pepper and the ever amusing Bobby.
I enjoyed the narration as well as the story. Authors humour comes across well alongside the cultural awareness of a gay Koreans struggle to be accepted within his family and society from the perspective of his white boyfriend
This is a brilliant series of books, but add in the narration by Greg Tremblay. And it just becomes something More! I listen to it at the gym and its marvellous for distracting me from the boredom. ( I'm not a fan of excersise).
"Better than the first"
Since I gave the first installment 5 stars it seems silly to say it is better; but I can't give 10 stars. Cole and Jae continue to have mystery/adventures and work on their relationship. In this installment, people get shot. The body count is not as high as in Book 1, but still. I actually love all the action in Rhys Ford's books. She has this writing style where you are just reading along, la, la, la and then BAM!! bullets start flying out of nowhere. It's great.
The funny thing is that by listening to this story, I feel closer to Cole and Jae. I'm hearing things I don't remember reading in the book, and I loved the books. It is due to the terrific narrator. His narration really gives life to these guys and their story. I know what is going to happen, as I have read all 4 books, and I still really look forward to the audio version being released. It is that good!
"LOVE this narrator!"
**4 stars for the story, 10++++ stars for the audiobook narrator!**
Greg Tremblay, you rock my world.
You are a perfect, PERFECT, Cole McGinnis and your range of voices is... sigh... *me so happy*!! This narrator is one of my favorite audiobook narrators and has MADE this series for me! I could kiss you... for real! No, seriously, let's make out...
It takes a lot for me to LOVE an audiobook, especially an audiobook in which I have no idea what is happening. Honestly. I was totally clueless.
I had no idea what was happening in this book and I loved it anyway.
This might be terribly close-minded or something of me, but I couldn't for the life of me keep those Korean names apart. I had maybe one or two down pat, but the rest? A complete blur. Who were the main characters again? No idea. And listening in audiobook, where the names aren't written down for me to see them, it was even more of a problem.
In fact, when the bad guy/girl was revealed at the end, I had no clue who it was. Talk about anticlimactic...
So why did I love this book if I couldn't follow it?!
Answer: Well, the rest of the book rocked!
The scene with Cole and his parents... I cried. The scene with Cole and Claudia? Cried. The scenes with Cole and Jae? I got HOT and bothered! The book was funny! And sexy and crazy and I LOVE Rhys Ford for delivering again and again with this series.
I don't care that every Korean person Cole meets is gay. I don't care that I have no idea who the side characters are. I still love this series, no small part due to the audiobook narrator.
Keep narrating, Greg Tremblay, and I'll keep listening!
**Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review**
"better than the first one"
I gave Dirty Kiss only 4 stars in all categories but moved it up to 5 for this book. Was it really that much better? No. I think I just got more into the characters. That, however, is no small achievement, since many times the later novels don't live up to the first in the series.
I found some parts of this story to be a little more dull than the duller parts of the first novel but the emotional scenes (and not just the sex scenes, which ARE emotional and not gratuitous at all), cut much deeper than in the first, so it's a fine trade-off.
I can't wait for the third, and I haven't read even a 2nd book in my string of purchases in a long time. Great characters, great social commentary (subtly included), great narrator.
"Rhys does it again."
Rhys has written one of the best detectives I have ever had the pleasure to read. Cole has brilliant dry dialog and seriously funny asides, I can't imagine anyone but Greg Tremblay bring him to life.
This time around you learn more about the Korean "family" life that Jae-Min is a part of, and why he's in the closet. Of course there is murder(s), and Cole being shot at, then there is the great plot twist that you really don't see coming.
Wish I could find another word better than Brilliant, but really that's what any Cole McGinnis Mystery is.
"It's No Secret.... I Love this Series"
There is so much going on in these books. Sometimes I get whiplash trying to keep up. The narrator helps by giving each character a distinct voice. I really like Mr. Tremblay.
As in any good whodunit, Ms. Ford keeps the reader guessing. So many characters have motives, but until the end, you don't know who the perpetrator is.
Yes. If anything, he's solidified his performance and made the characters his.
Scarlett. I would like to find out her beauty secrets :-)
Number 3 - Bring it.
"H. O. double T HOT!"
The ever evolving relationship between Cole and Jae.
Dirty Kiss, same characters, world and narrator.
A knack for Asian words, phrasing and accents like no other.
Sex on a stick?
Private Detective Cole McGinnis and his lover, Kim Jae-Min, are trying to settle into as normal a relationship as their crazy lives will allow in the aftermath of Jae’s cousins death. While Cole is still haunted by the murder of his long time lover, Jae is at odds with himself. He is committed to Cole like he has never been to anyone else, but hides his sexuality for fear of being ostracized by his traditional Korean family.
When their mutual friend Scarlet asks for Cole’s PI skills in locating a friend that has been missing for close to twenty years, Cole accepts the job and soon comes to regret that decision. Wherever Cole and Jae go, madness and mayhem are sure to follow, and this time is no exception. As the bodies start to drop Cole becomes more desperate to solve the mystery. Is Scarlet’s friend really missing, or is he dead? Worse, could he be the one doing all the killing?
What I thoroughly love about this series is the electric, scorching, white hot fucking chemistry between Cole and Jae. I’m talking bed breaking, hip bruising, resorting to speaking another language because your brain is completely fried, mind numbing sex! It’s utterly fantastic, a thing of beauty, truly. I digress... there is more to their story. Cole is a trouble magnet, wherever he goes death and dismemberment are sure to follow. His body is riddled with scars from all the near misses in his life, including the shooting that took the life of his former lover. His guardian angel must be seriously exhausted, the man always manages to make it out of the most harrowing situations alive.
Then there is the vivid and wildly described Korean culture that is wrapped around Jae, his family and his friends. It is no secret how that part of the country views homosexuality and Ford pulls no punches in her scripts. Jae is so obviously and stubbornly in love with Cole, but he’d just as soon die as admit to it, he is so afraid of losing his family. It’s something that Cole couldn’t truly grasp until he is face to face with his own hateful and ignorant parents for the first time in ten years. After a blood boiling confrontation with is step mother, Cole finally fully recognizes Jae’s fears. And I think their relationship grows stronger because of it.
Narrated by Greg Tremblay who is very monotone and matter of fact when he is portraying Cole, which is spot on with the way the character is written, but colourful and exasperating when reading Jae. Tremblay brings Cole’s dry and witty sense of humour to life while nailing all the various Asian characters with precision and finesse. Did I mention the hot, sweaty, passionate, toe curling sex? *fans self just thinking about it*
I think that Ford is such an accomplished writer that whether you chose to read or listen to this story, or both, that you would have the same experience. I just always love it when a narrator can take the words and really bring them to life, which is what Tremblay has done with this series. I can’t wait to see what dangerous and deadly mystery Cole and Jae stumble into in the next book!
~ Note, this is the second book in a series that should be read in order.
"Rhys & Greg do it again!"
It’s official…I’m a Rhys Ford fan. I am really enjoying listening to this series. Rhys writes great action and has this writing style where you are just reading along (listening), and then boom...bullets start flying out of nowhere. My only complaint is my confusion over all of the Korean names…I can’t keep up with who’s who.
Greg is an awesome narrator. He really gives life to these guys and their story. I love the way Jae and Cole’s relationship gets stronger with each book. Both of these MC’s emote feel-good emotions from me. Rhys combines a little mystery and suspense with Korean culture, and smexy, sometimes heart-wrenching scenes. Oh, and the lap cuddles are the best.
Great book and on to the next although it looks like I may have to read the next one :(
I very much enjoyed the narrative and the convoluted plot. I did find the Korean names harder to follow when spoken than when written.
"It doesn't get much better than this duo!"
Jae and Cole are trying to make a go of their relationship while still hiding things from Jae’s family.
There is another mystery, this time involving the fabulous Scarlet, whom we met in book 1. There’s a missing person and lots and lots of Korean people involved. (I highly recommend the audio version for help keeping track of all these people!)
What makes this book special is the deepening relationship between Jae and Cole. It. Is. Intense.
Their blossoming love is amazing to watch unfold and Rhys is the consummate story teller using rich language and evocative phrasing to add to their deep commitment to each other.
Greg Tremblay does amazing work with the narration, giving all the characters unique voices and creating the absolute PERFECT mood for both the mystery and the love story. A better narrator for this series could not be conceived!
I love this series so much and I think book two really hooks the reader into the love affair between Jae and Cole.
6 of 5 stars
"Hands down the best combo of narrator&author!"
I echo so many others when I say this series goes beyond engaging. The voices, the nuanced tones, the capability for you to "see" each character-a string testament to the author for creating a sublime series and the narrator for bringing it to life.
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