Kai Gracen Series

o-black-dog-bluesBlack Dog Blues
Ever since he’d been part of the pot in a high-stakes poker game, elfin outcast Kai Gracen figured he’d used up any good karma he had when Dempsey, a human Stalker, won the hand and took him in. Following the violent merge of Earth and Underhill, the human and elfin races were left with a messy, monster-ridden world and Stalkers were often the only cavalry willing to ride to someone’s rescue when something shadowy and dark moved into the neighbourhood.

There certainly were no shortage of monsters or people stupidly willing to become lunch for one.

It was a hard life but one Kai liked. And he was good at it. Killing monsters was easy. Especially since he was one himself.

After an accident retired Dempsey out, Kai set up permanent shop in San Diego, contracting out to the local SoCalGov depot. It was a decent life, filled with bounty, a few friends and most importantly, no other elfin around to remind him he wasn’t really human.

That was until a sidhe lord named Ryder arrives in San Diego and Kai is conscripted to do a job for Ryder’s fledgling Dawn Court. It was supposed to a simple run; head up the coast during dragon-mating season to retrieve a pregnant human woman seeking sanctuary with the new Court then back to San Diego. Easy, quick and best of all, profitable. But Ryder’s “simple” run leads to massive trouble and Kai ends up being caught in the middle of a deadly bloodline feud he has no hope of escaping.

No one ever got rich by being a Stalker. But then hardly any of them got old either. The way things were looking, it didn’t look like Kai was going to be the exception.

Black Dog Blues can be purchased at:
DSP Publications  and Amazon

MadLizardMamboFSMad Lizard Mambo (Book 2, Kai Gracen)
Kai Gracen has no intention of being anyone’s pawn. A pity Fate and SoCalGov have a different opinion on the matter.

Licensed Stalkers make their living hunting down monsters and dangerous criminals… and their lives are usually brief, brutal, and thankless. Despite being elfin and cursed with a nearly immortal lifespan, Kai didn’t expect to be any different. Then Ryder, the High Lord of the Southern Rise Court, arrived in San Diego, Kai’s not-so-mundane life went from mild mayhem to full-throttle chaos.

Now an official liaison between the growing Sidhe Court and the human populace, Kai is at Ryder’s beck and call for anything a High Lord might need a Stalker to do. Unfortunately for Kai, this means chasing down a flimsy rumor about an ancient lost Court somewhere in the Nevada desert—a court with powerful magics that might save Ryder—and Kai’s—people from becoming a bloody memory in their Merged world’s violent history.

The race for the elfin people’s salvation opens unwelcome windows into Kai’s murky past, and it could also slam the door on any future he might have with his own kind and Ryder.

Mad Lizard Mambo can be purchased at: DSP Publications and Amazon

142 thoughts on “Kai Gracen Series

  1. Devony

    Will there be a sequel?…..hehe I mean in your spare time that is;)
    And why the heck is my avatar pic upside down? Will have to figure out later lol

      1. Joy

        Hello! I have just started on KG book 2! I love this character! Any idea when you plan on releasing book 3? I want something to look forward to! 🙂 Also I saw a post about Kai’s age. I know he didn’t grow up like a normal child. From his behavior and some of his vulnerabilities as well as his risk taking nature, he seems about 23-25 human age. Is he the same age as Ryder by elfin standards or younger? Any way, very nice writing. Even the supportive characters are good. Please keep up the good work.

      2. Hi hi! I just finished number 2! Heh. I will be working it into my sked. And yes, he’s about 25 years … kind of. Ryder is older… but well, very different. I am glad you liked the books! Thank you! ❤

      3. Joy Touchstone

        Thank you for replying! The will work into my shed comment made me very happy! I have SOOOOO many questions! What is the meaning of the visceral attraction between Kai and Ryder? Does Kai have magic? Is he a shape changed dragon more then a dragon blooded elfin? Is he really sterile? ( I hope not!) of course I know you can’t answer any of these questions. But I had to ask anyway. 😊 And I really love the way you have developed his relationships in the story. He is so connected after starting life in such a traumatic way. That he can trust and love is amazing. I am thrilled with how he and Ryder are being portrayed. I like the growing respect and friendship. If they do ever get together and I honestly wouldn’t mind if they never got there on page, it will be real and significant: A confirmation of their relationship. I love that you have put world building, plot, and character development above having two guys hooking up. You have written a strong urban fantasy first. Looking forward to more!

  2. Devony

    Yeah…not sure? lol my Meggy Wafel would have had words for me if that was how I took the blasted picture. *sighs* the avatar thingy must be having fun with me???or is just broken?
    Will go fiddle and see if I can get it right side up.
    …well if Kai wants more of his story told I have no doubt he will let you know;) hehe

  3. Denni

    Much as I enjoy all your stories, Kai is my favorite (so far). Hope he tells you more of his story soon *sad puppy eyes*

      1. May

        I would also buy the sequel for this book. I read a lot so it this persona and world was rather refreshing. Kudos!

  4. brooke

    Hi, just wanted to drop by and tell you I loved this book! Awesome world building and Kai is a great character! Can’t wait for more 🙂 Thank you!!

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    1. Heh. I just released a Cole book in March 😀

      There’ll be a Bobby book which follows up on Dirty Laundry. that should be in December. 😀

  6. Kerri

    I really hope we’re allowed to ask book questions here. I was re-reading this and while there are tons of things I want to know, I’m curious. How old is Kai exactly? We know he didn’t grow up as a normal child or even elfin would, but he doesn’t seem to know how old he is. But Dempsey being human and still alive, Kai can’t be too old can he? I made him 30 in my head. And is his cat really a goblin? Or part goblin? These are completely random factoids that I’m stuck on. Thanks in advance. Sorry if I posted in the wrong area!

    1. You are always welcome to ask me anything anywhere! 😀 Heh

      Kai doesn’t know how old he is. BUT that will be revealed. His father had him for a long time and could manipulate flesh so his age is a bit iffy. Mentally he’s between 25 and 30.

      Ah, Newt. As far as Kai knows, Newt is just a very small, grumpy cat D

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    1. It actually will be re-released by DSP in May! I’ll be re-doing the cover and everything *grins* It’s a part of their new Imprint! *hugs*

  8. Kira

    Black Dog Blues is one of the best fantasy novels I’ve ever read! I really really hope that you do a sequel! Every time I read it my mind tries to finish the story but I can’t picture the perfect ending! Please help by writing a sequel!! I am sure it will be an amazing novel!! 🙂

  9. crystal

    I was wondering. Have bought the first published black dog blues. Do I have to rebuy the new one. Did you make any big changes to the store? Loved the store and would hate to miss anything new in the store. Can’t wait for the sequel.

    1. No, please… it’s practically the same. Some small editing and what nots. I made the decision not to alter the book because I didn’t feel it was right to people who’d already purchased it… who’d then need to purchase it for new content. I’d rather focus on writing the sequel. *grins* Does that make sense? And I’m so happy you liked it! *HUGS*

  10. Morgan

    Just finish reading Black Dog blues. Can’t wait for the next one. I’m not usually a fan of the Fae but your story just pulled me in. Awesome world building.

  11. Jaimee

    I am personally begging you for a sequel….Just finished my third read and I am feening for more! I absolutely love Kai and Ryder together. Can we get a short? A prequel? Anything!

    1. I can tell you that things are in the works for a sequel and well, other things. *grins* ALSO! Greg Tremblay is working on the audiobook for Kai *cheers* So you will have that soon! Promise!

      I love Kai. He’s a great character to write for. *hugs*

  12. Ivy

    Hi Rhys, I love your books, can’t get enough….when will the audio book be released? I absolutely love them and can’t wait to listen to this one. I’ve listened to both the Sinners and Hellsingers series. Both narrators were awesome. Do you know who will be narrating this series? Thanks 😎

    1. Hi! And thank you! Greg Tremblay will be doing the audio book for Kai and he’s already started it. So it shouldn’t be too long. He did a great job in the snippet I heard. Soooo exciting 😀 I’ll post it on my blog when I know!

  13. Marie

    I just heard the audio for this book and it is great. I can’t wait to the next one. I will be looking for the paper book to have.

  14. Mary

    I have the e-book & just finished listening to Greg doing Kai for the audio book…..please, please we NEED a sequel. Love Kai & Ryder. Want to learn more about Kai’s family & what they did to him.

      1. Denni

        I stopped by for Kai news…and here it is (kinda)! A favorite character, I’m looking forward to more!

  15. Mary

    I realize that the cover pix is a combo of pix & painting, but who is that lovely creature who posed for Kai?

  16. Hey! Wondering if there evr could be like a crossover between Black Dog Blues and aink and Shadows. They kind of have the same universe. It would be so cool if they did!

    1. Ah no, they’re not in the same universe. Sadly. Or good for Kai? *grins* Ink is set in modern day San Diego and Kai’s in an Alternate Universe San Diego. But… we’ll have more Kai soon 😀

  17. mccarthy0420raichaelj

    Just bought this, and can’t wait to read it! Alas, I have to wait till schoolwork is done, which might be up to another two weeks, and had to hide my Kindle so I wouldn’t be tempted. I love your works, and have been slowly bit surely collecting them all~

  18. mccarthy0420raichaelj

    Oh, I know I will!
    And yaaaaaaas~
    Oh man, I have so much reading I need to catch up on~

  19. Dawn

    So excited for the next book. Is there an expected release date, or possibly a name for the next book?

  20. Niyx

    I just finished listening to this, and I’m always astounded by the good luck I’ve had with books on Audible. I’m so glad I found this book, and I’m very much looking forward to more of this series. It’s so well done. I usually only listen to books while I’m at work, but I ended up listening to it on the way home and then just laying about all evening to finish. This is such a fascinating world.

    1. Thank you so so much. The narrator, Greg Tremblay, is a God among men and such a sweetheart to work with. I really enjoyed his input and take on Black Dog Blues.

      I’m working on the second one so…. soooooon!

      1. Niyx

        Ahh! I just saw the preorder info for the next book, and I am so excited! Do you know if the audiobook will be released at the same time? I listen to BDB so much at work, and I can’t wait to have more about Kai’s world.

      2. Due to contractual restrictions and the nature of Audible, there are no same time releases for audio books 😀 Sadly. I know. 😀

  21. Jessica Russell

    Just like Niyx I typically listen at work and read at home, but this book could not be stopped. I cant wait to see more development with Kai and his neices. I staryed as a Sinners series fan and now Kai Gracen is taking the spotlight, or at least sharing.

  22. marsha loneagle

    Thanks to Audible sale, I discovered this wonderful book and a new author. Please keep writing! Off to read the third book by you. . . no second Kai book yet so I started the Dirty Kiss series. . . .*happy sigh*

  23. Tracie_Rathsack

    Hello!

    I stumbled onto Kai and his merry band of misfits courtesy of Audible. I really enjoyed the audio book and the VO actor had a good command of the different personalities.

    I read through all of the comments hoping I could find info on the second one but I think maybe it hasn’t been released?

    Also – this isnt my normal genre, but I really liked the fact it wasnt written for teens. I chew through those fairly quickly, usually in a couple hours (eion colfer),and they’re more for my 12 year old son than myself so thank you for that. I make a habit of reading what he brings home and this was a pleasant surprise!

    I am going to go Amazon your other works but I am curious – the Merge – im so interested in it. It was mentioned so much in the story that I hope the history of it will be visited more in coming books.

    Thanks again for introducing me to Kai, he’s perfectly imperfect!

    1. Hello and thank you!

      Kai 2 will be out next year and Greg is said to be onboard for any audio. And no, it’s definitely not for teens. I write for two imprints of Dreamspinner Press, its main line with gay mystery & paranormal thrillers / romance and also for DSP Publications, an LGBTQ focused genre imprint…which Kai is a part of.

      Ah, the Merge. We’ll be getting into that soon. I’m looking forward to exploring the setup and I”m truly glad you found Black Dog Blues and liked it.

      Thank you so so much!
      Rhys Ford

  24. Rochelle

    Just finished listening to this book and just LOVED it!!!

    I know how much it takes to write a book and get it all out into the world and I know some authors hate it when fans ask – when’s the next one, when’s the next one. So I won’t ask, I’ll just quietly sit here and wait patiently for it.

    I also just wanted to say that I also loved Murder and Mayhem as well. Squealed when I heard my name! I do hope there’s a sequel to this one, loved the banter between Rook and his grandfather.

    That’s about it – currently listening to Sloe Ride.

    oh just one more thing – um – when are the next ones out? 🙂

  25. Whoot! Great news for a sequel 🙂 Loved the audio as well! (Listened AFTER reading, I do LOVE my reading.) Looking forward to all your releases next year.

    Tj

  26. Lee Hanson

    So any updates on the next kai gracen book, been waiting forever or maybe it just seems that way. Loved fish stick Fridays and the sinners gin series.

  27. Brigitte Caperton

    Not sure how I missed BDB, I thought I bought all of your books … but anyway, glad I found it! This book … wow. I love your world building, your characters and the unpredictable plots. Love the dialogues and the interactions. This is by far my favorite book of yours. Read it, finished at a time I should have been sleeping, and went right back to the beginning to start over, since I couldn’t stand to be parted from Kai and his crew. Pretty please, if I can sacrifice my sleep to read your stories, could you sacrifice some to write the sequel a bit faster? JK. Is there a title yet, so I can pre-order on Amazon??

    1. There is a title but it’s not up on Amazon yet 😀 If you follow my blog, watch for a link to the April State of the Rhys I’ll be posting on The Novel Approach *grins*

      Soooo much news.

      And some of it… about Kai 2 😀

  28. Tracie Rathsasck

    Well hot damn! And I just finished a couple other Greg Tremblay books – I like him (98%) so this should be great!

  29. MarieAntoinette

    Well daaaamnnnn Lady, you sure hooked me good, sighhh. There are so many interesting concepts here. And the tease is maddening, as it should be. (wicked grin) Would so love to have him bound to Ryder to override the other…..you know, just to be sure their tangles can’t catch him again….orrrr after he escapes them again. Oh yeah, I’m invested….LOL
    And Tremblay made your words take flight. I LOVE reading but the audio is sooo rich and what I need at night to sleep. Meaning I have to back up every day. Poor poor me…..LMAO
    Thank you Rhys.
    and yes that’s my real name…..shrug….LOL

    1. I am forever thankful to Greg for elevating what I write. He’s simply a great partner in the storytelling and I cannot ever express my gratitude for his talent. *hugs*

  30. I’ve been trying to restrict myself, but have lost count of the number of rereads of Kai’s books! So, definitely love what you’ve done with this story and this character. Kai is so unexpectedly thoughtful and sensitive, which is somewhat due to some of people around him but most of it comes from Kai himself. Any thoughts on how he turned out to be not like the rest of his family?

    1. Oh I have many thoughts *Grins* But that’s part of the story *chuckles evilly*

      Kai’s an interesting character to write. I really love playing in his world.

  31. Niyx

    I got MLM (audible.com) last week, and I haven’t stopped listening to it yet. It’s excellent and I’m so excited for the developments between Kai and Rider. I love how they TALKED and actually aired their issues. So good. Their relationship dynamic is absolutely one of my favorite types. (“If that happens, I’ll kill you. Because that’s what you’d want me to do to protect your court and your people.” kyaaa so good///////// )
    I know it’s early to be so eager, but I can’t wait for the third installment. This is such a great series.

      1. Brigitte Caperton

        *crosses out everything on Rhys’ schedule with black marker, except Kai III*

        Glad I could help.

        But yes, I too, would rather have the next Kai book than anything else.

  32. Read “Mad Lizard Mambo” instead of sleeping the day after I got it. No regrets at all.
    I adore the fact that the only dragons Kai finds sacred are still the ones tattooed on his body~

    Love, love, love those two, but I can’t wait to see whatever else you turn out this year, since I have spent all the money on (almost) all of your books.

      1. Kai is wonderful. Always. I love his sass and pretty much everything about him.
        (I may or may not have designed a tattoo I want because of Kai and Ryder :heart:)

        Just turned my brother onto these today ((:
        I love doing that to him; he returns the favor, too, but I get my way when I really push~ And I know he’ll love them, because they are amazing every time I read them –and I still chuckle at all the jokes 😉

  33. Jae

    Please start on Kai Gracen #3 ASAP! (lol! DOn’t mean to be demanding) I just re read BDB and MLM and I liked him even better the second time around. He really is a great character. And the supporting cast is top notch. I love your world building. How do you feel about fan fiction? I may have to write KG fanfiction until another official version comes out. 🙂 I was wondering if you have considered writing any more Kai shorts? I read the 3 available. I would love to read when Ryder met Kai, Kai visits his nieces, maybe more Kai and Jonas. I love their relationship. I have a Tanic question. Why did he go through the trouble to create a child like Kai only to torture him? And why did he accelerate his physical growth? He could have molded him into what ever tool he wanted if he had reared him from infancy, right? And that leads me to more gushing about Kai. That he is able to love, trust and bond to others is really remarkable. He should be a sociopath or totally shut down given his origins. So I love him even more because of his strength. If his only hang up is that he can’t sleep with someone he knows, that is pretty good! So please write a little KG until you have time to get around to the next novel. Dim Sum Asylum as its also urban fantasy ish may help hold me for a little bit. Happy writing! Think Kai! Think Kai. Kai. Kai. Kai. (grins)

    1. Snorts. Kai is on the schedule. That’s all I can promise you. I have a few books before I hit his next one but he is there.

      I am pretty stacked in but I’m going to try to get to him as soon as I can.

      Fanfic. Anyone can write what they like… I just can’t legally read it. *grins* Long legal stuff here. BUT that being said, I’m really happy Kai speaks to you and I really love writing him. xoxoxoxo

  34. Just finished re-reading the Kai Gracen series and absolutely can’t get enough! Such a beautiful world, well fleshed out characters, and that snark? Can’t wait to see what you’ve got in store for this delightful band of misfits!

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