>> Tuesday, April 05, 2011
TITLE: The Perfect Play
AUTHOR: Jaci Burton
SETTING: Contemporary US
SERIES: Followed by Changing The Game
REASON FOR READING: Well, the cover helped. I don't usually do mantitty, but this is outstanding mantitty!
The last thing event planner Tara Lincoln needs is the jet-set lifestyle of a football pro like Mick Riley; even though their steamy and passionate one-night stand proved that Mick is an all-star-both on the field and in the bedroom.My not finishing The Perfect Play is all about me having gone on a shopping spree and picked up a boatload of ebooks I really, really want to read => the opportunity cost of any book I'm not enjoying all that much has just risen quite a bit. I'm not getting as much time to read as I would like to lately, so I'm afraid I'm going to have to be ruthless.
Tara played the game of love once and lost big, and she doesn't intend to put herself out there again, especially with a certified heartbreaker. But when Mick sets his mind to win, nothing will stop him. And he has the perfect play in mind to catch this sultry vixen.
TPP is all about fantasy and wish fulfilment. Tara Lincoln is a regular girl, single mum of a teenager. She owns an events planning business, and in one of her parties, which she's organised for her city's professional football team, she attracts the attention of the top player, Mick Riley. Mick pursues her quite hard, and they end up spending the night together. As far as Tara's concerned, that's it. Surely she's too ordinary for the great big star to be interested in? Not to mention that teenage son, a single mum is clearly not what a millionaire athlete would go for. But Mick is really gone over her, and determined to change her mind.
I read about a third of the book. It's not bad. It wasn't that I couldn't bear to keep reading. It was just that I was bored and slightly annoyed with it, and didn't see the point.
The boredom probably came from the wish fulfilment element. Mick is so perfect that I never got a real sense of who he was. He's a big-time athlete, but he's perfectly nice and kind, without an arrogant bone in his body. He has invested his money wisely and doesn't piss it away on partying. He trains hard and doesn't drink much at all. He does the celebrity round of movie premieres and parties, accompanied by beautiful models and actresses, but only because his agent arranges it all for publicity (and the publicity is not because he loves fame -oh, no, it's because higher profile for him --> higher ticket sales --> good for the team). He doesn't bat an eyelid when presented with the fact that Tara has a teenage son. In short: perfect. And mind you, I'm not someone who goes crazy over the bad boy heroes. In fact, I prefer a nice beta over an alpha, anytime. But Mick just didn't really do it for me. I liked him, he seemed lovely, he just never felt like a real individual for me, more a collection of lovely traits.
The annoyance was because of a number of small things. The first was the constant harping on how Tara is sooo unlike all those materialistic, plastic women Mick usually dates. Seriously, for the first few chapters, especially, it seemed like every single thought Mick had about Tara started with "Unlike all those other women...". Hon, it doesn't really say much about you that you dated all these women you disliked so much, does it?
In addition to this, I didn't particularly like Tara. I don't really know why, since she's pretty inoffensive, but she rubbed me wrong. I also didn't think she was particularly well written: she's a mass of insecurities, and yet, in bed she's assertive and confident and says exactly what she wants. It just didn't compute, I couldn't really buy that it was the same woman we were talking about. And speaking of the sex, there was way, way, WAY too much of it. Burton can clearly write some steamy love scenes, but there were so many of them that they bored me, and it was all I could do not to skim.
MY GRADE: So, it's a DNF, but as I said above, it's not a bad book, and I expect many people will like it just fine.