Tops Down Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote

Will Rowan’s festival fling with sexy dancer Seth lead to something more permanent?


Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design

Buy Links: 

Amazon US:

Amazon UK:


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?

A much shorter version of this story was originally published in the Not Quite Shakespeare Anthology by Dreamspinner Press. This version has been revised and extended. Almost half of it is new content.


Tops Down Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If I had to pick a single thing I love about Jay Northcote’s books, it’d be that they always put a smile on my face while I read them. His books are sweet and easy without being fluffy; they have just the right amount of sap and sex and plot. So I knew going in that I would love Tops Down Bottoms Up and I definitely did.

Rowan is all of us. He stereotypes, at least a little. He just knows that all morris dancers are hairy dudes with beer bellies who are mildly insufferable to watch. And then Seth and his morris dancing troupe comes along and shows him exactly why he’s wrong. Seth is a big, adorable teddy bear. He’s sweet and kind, but he doesn’t take crap either. He’s also incredibly sexy and together, he and Rowan make an awesome pair. Also: as an American, I had no idea going in what morris dancing was. I had a thoroughly educational and entertaining YouTube session after finishing this book. (I can totally see where Rowan would’ve gotten that assumption, btw.)

I admired Rowan. I mean, who of us hasn’t embarrassed themselves somehow? I can totally imagine being the person that gets called out for (loudly) complaining that something is stupid. But instead of doing what I would’ve done – told my friend, sorry mate, I have to head out early – he owns up to it and is like, ok, fine, prove to me I’m wrong. The fact that he wanted the excuse to see Seth didn’t hurt, but still. He was pretty brave to go into that after embarrassing himself and own it. I loved that.

In true Northcote fashion, this was a lovely, sweet romance; the kind I love to pick up when I just need a feel-good moment. I highly recommend it.

A copy of this book was received in exchange for review on OMGReads.

View all my reviews


Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.

One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.

Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.

Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.


Website | Twitter | Facebook profile | Facebook author page | Newsletter | Jay’s books


Related posts

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.