ARC Review: Absinthe of Malice, by Rhys Ford

Advance Review Copy generously provided by the author
in exchange for an honest review.


cover-rhysford-absintheofmaliceWe’re getting the band back together.

Those five words send a chill down Miki St. John’s spine, especially when they’re spoken with a nearly religious fervor by his brother-in-all-but-blood, Damien Mitchell. However, those words were nothing compared to what Damien says next.

And we’re going on tour.

When Crossroads Gin hits the road, Damien hopes it will draw them closer together. There’s something magical about being on tour, especially when traveling in a van with no roadies, managers, or lovers to act as a buffer. The band is already close, but Damien knows they can be more—brothers of sorts, bound not only by familial ties but by their intense love for music.

As they travel from gig to gig, the band is haunted by past mistakes and personal demons, but they forge on. For Miki, Damie, Forest, and Rafe, the stage is where they all truly come alive, and the music they play is as important to them as the air they breathe.

But those demons and troubles won’t leave them alone, and with every mile under their belts, the band faces its greatest challenge—overcoming their deepest flaws and not killing one another along the way.


Dates read:
Edition read:
June 22, 2016
Dreamspinner Press
Contemporary, M/M, LGBT+
220 e-book pages
3rd person
Sinners, book 5
April 30 – May 3, 2016
Kindle Edition
See the book on GoodReads.

Rating:     ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Ratings are 1 to 5 stars and based mostly on GoodReads standards.
Click for more information regarding ratings.


Lord, help me. I cannot get enough of Rhys Ford’s writing. I WANT ALL HER WORDS. They bring me life. I swear, any reading experience of her books is not just a feast for the eyes. It’s a full sensory immersion. I can nearly taste the tastes, smell the smells, and feel the textures and all the feels. Her imagery is astounding.

Absinthe of Malice takes us on the road with Crossroads Gin as they start a low-budget cross-country rock tour, leaving their men behind. This is a bonding experience for this newly re-formed band of survivors, a way to come together, and put tragic pasts behind them and to find their new groove.

This is a fantastic reunion of all the fellas we got to know in the Sinners series so far as they all found love and healing. I was excited to see where this tour in a crappy van would take them.

But it’s not merely a sunshine and roses jaunt full of gigs and screaming fans. Nope. There’s trouble afoot because Rhys can’t let things simply dance along to a steady beat and cool lyrics. ‘Course not.

I’m not sure if the Green Fairy is envious or has a vendetta, but Rhys brings the drama and discord. Strange and scary things keep happening. People get hurt. Threats are made. And the band’s ability to finish the tour in one piece is questionable.

Y’all this book is four couples wrapped up in one book! Because of course their men can’t stay away with all the danger. They come every single time they’re needed, to wherever they’re needed.

There’s a lot of focus on the band, but we get plenty of one-on-one scenes as the rockers are reunited with the Morgan men. I loved catching up with all of these guys.

This was mostly fun, but there’s a lot of feels here too as we dig little further into the past, and I was gutted with new things happening. Rhys still manages to bring all the emotions, even with so many characters and so much going on.

In addition to all the action and suspense, this book plants some seeds for the final (SAY IT AIN’T SO!) book, and it ends on a wee cliffhanger.

Don’t mind me while I curl up in the fetal position and sob with a bottle of Gin when this series ends. Though I despair, I can’t wait to see what Rhys has in store for the Sinners next.

This review also posted on GoodReads.

Pre-Order / Purchase Links:

Dreamspinner | Amazon | ARe | BN

Other Books in the Series:

1) Sinner’s Gin
2) Whiskey and Wry
2) Tequila Mockingbird
2) Sloe Ride
GR | Dreamspinner | AmazonARe | BN
GR | Dreamspinner | AmazonARe | BN
GR | Dreamspinner | AmazonARe | BN
GRDreamspinnerAmazonARe | BN

About the Author:

ARC-AuthorPic-RhysFordRhys Ford was born and raised in Hawai’i then wandered off to see the world. After chewing through a pile of books, a lot of odd food, and a stray boyfriend or two, Rhys eventually landed in San Diego, which is a very nice place but seriously needs more rain.

Rhys admits to sharing the house with cats of varying degrees of black fur and a ginger cairn terrorist. Rhys is also enslaved to the upkeep a 1979 Pontiac Firebird, a Toshiba laptop, and an overworked red coffee maker.

Tell me what you think!