The Perfect Play (Play by Play, #1)by Jaci Burton Published 01 Feb 2011
|The Perfect Play (Play by Play, #1).pdf|
|Publisher||Penguin Berkley Heat|
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Football pro Mick Riley is an all-star, both on the field and in the bedroom. But a sexy, determinedly single mom just might be the one to throw him off his game...
For years Mick has been taking full advantage of the life available to a pro athlete: fame, fortune, and a different girl in every city. But when he meets and beds confident, beautiful event planner Tara Lincoln, he wants much more than the typical one-night stand. Too bad Tara's not interested in getting to know football's most notorious playboy any better.
As the single mother of a teenage son, the last thing Tara needs is the jet-set lifestyle of Mick Riley; even though their steamy and passionate one-night stand was unforgettable. Tara's life is complicated enough without being thrust into the spotlight as Mick's latest girl du jour. Tara played the game of love once and lost big, and she doesn't intend to put herself out there again, especially with a heartbreaker like Mick.
But when Mick sets his mind to win, nothing will stop him. And he has the perfect play in mind.
"The Perfect Play (Play by Play, #1)" Reviews
5 stars – Contemporary/Sports Erotic Romance
Thoughts Before Reading:
OHHH-MYYY-GAWWWD!! I have absolutely zero saliva left after staring at this epitome of cover HOTness! Seriously, call a doctor quick 'cause I think I've swallowed my tongue.
Thoughts After Reading:
I think a review for this book is about the equivalent of crotchless panties or raspberry sauce on chocolate cake...totally unnecessary. I mean with a tongue swallowing, eyes bulging cover like this, who really gives a @%*$ what the story is, right? Well, the even better news is that it’s actually a great erotic romance with a too “perfect”, too sexy, to die for hero that can only be found in Romancelandia. And yes, the sex is as satisfying and as smokin’ HOT as the cover! 5 studtastic stars!
This says it all: I have a ten week-old baby who wakes up every three hours, so sleep is a hot commodity right now. Yet I stayed up late to finish this book because I so wanted to see Mick and Tara get their happy ending. Loved the characters, particularly the hero, who is protective and alpha without being overbearing or angst-y. And it's quite a hot read!
I will admit I bought this book because of the cover.
First, let's just take a moment to savor this cover. Jed Hill is among the wonders of nature, and I will never grow tired of staring at his absolutely ripped physique.
Fortunately, the book lives up to the cover. Mick is a star quarterback at the height of his career and his carefully orchestrated fame. Tara is an event planner single mom with a 14-year-old son she gave birth to as a teenager. When the two meet at an event Tara plans, neither of them have any idea where they're going to end up.
Tara doesn't want a parade of men in and out of her life because of the bad example it will set for her son — and because she's never really had any reason to trust men. Her life is her work and her son. (That's something I can relate to!) Mick, on the other hand, is wealthy, famous, a star — but he's sick of the bulimic models and vain starlets his agent has arranged for him to "date."
Although this relationship starts in the bedroom — and it gets off to a sexy start, believe me — it quickly becomes more than just sex. Those of you who love erotic love scenes will enjoy the book, because there is a lot of super-scorching sex in this story. But the emotion isn't lacking either, and by the end you'll be delighted, as I was, when Tara opens herself to the possibility of being with Mick and Mick straightens out his priorities, making a firm decision about what matters most to him in life.
My only quibble with the book is that I wanted an epilogue. I wanted to see Tara have the family and support she's never had before. Given that the next book involves Gavin, Mick's brother, a pro baseball player, I'm guessing we'll get some of that then.
This is the first book I've read on Kindle, so that was an adventure, too.
I recommend this to contemporary romance fans, romantica fans, and those who love sports-star heroes.
A quick update: A reader friend e-mailed me privately to ask whether there was anal action in the love scenes because she doesn't like to read that. There is. I don't care for that either — just call me Little Miss Vanilla — but as I told her, I found that I was able to just skip a few lines and be fine. It's a great story, and I'd hate her to miss it for that reason.
Overall Opinion: Sadly, this kind of fizzled out for me. The beginning sucked me in and had me intruiged, but by the end I was tempted (but didn't) to skim. I got that they had awesome sexual chemistry, but I wanted more than just sex *gasp* --I know. I liked the H. He was great. The h, however, ended up pushing all my buttons -- and definitely not in a good way. She was constantly bringing up other women, even though the H never behaved in any way to deserve that (only hints of a manwhore past). She also was pushing him away for most of the book. It drove me crazy! I am so grateful that I didn't pay the $7.99 that it is on Amazon and got it through my library instead ;)
Brief Summary of the Storyline: This is Tara and Mick's story. They meet at an event that Tara's event planning company put on for his NFL team. They hit it off and end up sharing a steamy night. What Tara didn't expect was for Mick to find her after she snuck out of his hotel room, and for him to pursue a relationship. There is some dancing around each other, but eventually they start dating and fall in love. There is some family and career drama, lots of sexy times, and a few funny moments...and they get a HFN ending.
POV: This alternated between focusing on Tara and Mick in 3rd person narrative (not my favorite).
Overall Pace of Story: Good until the end (see closure section). I never skimmed and I thought it flowed well.
Instalove: No. Instalust? Yes.
H rating: 4 stars. Mick. I liked him. He was sweet, loyal, and hot. I really liked how he jumped right in with her son and how he was with his family.
h rating: 2 stars. Tara. I appreciated how she seemed to be a good mom and brought herself out of a bad childhood, but her constant pushing away and bringing up other women all the time really irked me.
Sadness level: Low. No tissues needed.
Push/Pull: Yes [spoilers removed]
Heat level: Moderate/high. There is a good bit of sex in this one. Sometimes it even felt like too much, as I wanted more of a emotional connection between them.
Descriptive sex: Yes
Safe sex: Yes. Mentions of condoms being used. [spoilers removed]
OW/OM drama: No [spoilers removed]
Sex scene with OW or OM: No
Separation: Yes [spoilers removed]
Possible Triggers: Yes [spoilers removed]
Closure: This had one of those endings with the conflict being resolved right before the end. There wasn't even an epilogue, and I think it really would've benefited the story to have one. I'd call it a HFN ending [spoilers removed].
How I got it: It was on loan through my public library.
Safety: I'd say that this should be Safe for most readers.
*2 stars for plot and 1 star for the cover*
This book was the equivalent of a very hot guy who is dumb as a tack - great to look at but boring to listen to.
The problem with the plot was that there was no conflict. It’s basically the story of two people meet, have tons of sex, fall in love, the end. There were a few very small misunderstandings but nothing that would make you bite your nails thinking that they’re not going to make it. All the problems would have been cleared up if the heroine would have asked the hero one single question but instead she wouldn’t let him get a word and would disappear in a huff. This behavior has put her in the running for "Dumbass Heroine of the Year."
Don’t get me wrong, both H/h had some challenge in their lives but neither was relevant to the present because they had already overcome those problems. I don’t want to give any spoilers of the ‘deep, dark, secrets’ (yeah, right!) so I’ll give an example instead. Imagine that you’re reading a book where the heroine is very shy but decides to run for office. Seeing her confront her fear about public speaking, meeting new people, etc. is very different from knowing that she used to be shy but that now she talks in front of crowds all the time. The former makes you sympathize and admire her courage, the latter makes you think “so what?” and that’s the feeling I got reading this book.
I did like a few things. The fact that the heroine knew something of sports and that we heard about the hero’s grueling workouts. (Most romance make it seem as if it’s normal for a hero to a get six-pack without exercising.) But that’s about it. The rest was just predictable and boring.
So if you want to imagine how it feels to be swept up your feet by a gorgeous, famous, rich man, then this book might be enough for you. If you’re looking for a bit more, then you should skip the book and just look at the cover. Like in the case of a handsome-but-not-so-smart man, it will preserve the illusion that something deep is lurking in that smoldering gaze when in reality, there’s nothing underneath.