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Sandra Brown's "Play Dirty"--loved it...
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 8:15 pm    Post subject: Sandra Brown's "Play Dirty"--loved it... Reply with quote

I loved Play Dirty by Sandra Brown, one of her best books in quite a while. Reading thru the premise, I was almost positive I wouldn't like it; but I was very surprised how she pulled all those uncertain strings together. Griff, after a shaky beginning, was someone I came to like a lot, enjoying his quick quips.

In a nutshell, Laura is married to Foster Speakman, who is the owner of a fairly major airlines company, who is also a paraplegic. They cannot have children and this is where Griff enters the picture. He's a former quarterback who was accused of throwing a game and jailed for five years. They approach him with a plan they have in mind.

I like how Brown got thru all the conflicting emotions with these two people and the fact that it ultimately was romantic, but it was more than that, too. I know that not everyone would agree with me on this book, but I felt it was a worthwhile two-days read and was sorry when it ended.
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MrsFairfax



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 1069

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 7:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Tee, I was wondering whether to try this one. I think you and I have some different tastes, but in the areas where our interests overlap we usually agree, so I'll grab this one.
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any chance of getting it first from a library instead, MrsFairfax? That appears to always be a safe way, considering it's a hardback. Actually, this story should not have worked as well as it did for me. I believe it was the way Brown wrote it that it became convincing. I could shoot some holes into some of the scenes, but then I could probably do that with most fiction books. The holes were small and inconsequential, but I felt that something similar to this scenario could have been possible. There were some very subtle tender moments between these two and they grabbed me instantly.
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xina



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 6635
Location: minneapolis

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 8:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Tee for the report. I've been thinking of reading this one, although I haven't read a Sandra Brown in quite some time. However, I noticed so many readers with this book this summer...literally everywhere I went there was a reader with this book on a bench or even behing a cash register. So, I'll check it out from the library.
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you do happen to read it, let me know your thoughts, xina. Its plot is a bit unusual, so it may not be for everyone.
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LisaA



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 95

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am a fan of Sandra Brown, though I don't love everything she's written...

I also admit that, based on the premise, I did not think I would like Play Dirty at all! Hero who did time for a crime he admits he committed and a married woman as the heroine? Just not my cup of tea... But, despite my reservations I picked it up. I've got about 100 pages to go, but I am surprised at how much I am enjoying it...stayed up wayyyy too late last night reading.

SB is doing a good job of weaving a plausible, suspenseful tale and in making me care about the main characters. I can't wait to see how it all plays out....
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LisaA wrote:
I also admit that, based on the premise, I did not think I would like Play Dirty at all! Hero who did time for a crime he admits he committed and a married woman as the heroine? Just not my cup of tea... But, despite my reservations I picked it up. I've got about 100 pages to go, but I am surprised at how much I am enjoying it...stayed up wayyyy too late last night reading. SB is doing a good job of weaving a plausible, suspenseful tale and in making me care about the main characters. I can't wait to see how it all plays out....

Yep, my thoughts exactly prior to reading the book, LisaA. However, I too got caught up with her rhetoric in telling the story. She did a good job about making me care about both characters. When it does finally all play out, let me know your thoughts once again.
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LisaA



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 95

PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I finished Play Dirty last night, and Tee, like you, I really enjoyed it!

Prior to buying the book, I watched a video interview with Sandra Brown that is posted on her website in which she discusses Play Dirty. She mentioned that there was a "gotcha" in the book that she thought would surprise readers....and boy, did it surprise me!

Major, Major Spoiler (highlight to read):

I did not expect Rodarte to be a "good guy". SB did a really good job of hiding his identity as a cop!

In the interview, SP also mentioned that she had a difficult time coming up with a title for the book, but once she did, she felt it was perfect. I agree.

I think SB did a believable job of justifying Griff Burkett's role as the hero. Though he was far from perfect, his backstory and actions going forward redeemed him, IMO. I did like the heroine, too, and feel that SB did a good job in showing how her feelings for her husband and Griff evolved.

The plot had a lot of great twists, and kept me very engaged.

I think this is one of SB's better books, and highly recommend it.

LisaA
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LisaA wrote:
I think SB did a believable job of justifying Griff Burkett's role as the hero. Though he was far from perfect, his backstory and actions going forward redeemed him, IMO. I did like the heroine, too, and feel that SB did a good job in showing how her feelings for her husband and Griff evolved.

Yes, absolutely, LisaA. If what you said above was never accomplished by Brown, the story would have fallen totally flat. I thought too that Griff showed tenderness in small ways at certain times toward Laura that made me swallow a little tighter. It was obvious that he was not normally a man that bothered or had to bother in the past with such things. But she did a great job with both characters and their evolvement. I too felt this was one of her best books in a while. I had almost given up on her because her stuff has just been so-so lately. Thanks for your feedback.
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MrsFairfax



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 1069

PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tee wrote:
Any chance of getting it first from a library instead, MrsFairfax?



Oh, that goes without saying! Wink I'll let you know what I think when I'm done.
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xina



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 6635
Location: minneapolis

PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 8:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tee wrote:
If you do happen to read it, let me know your thoughts, xina. Its plot is a bit unusual, so it may not be for everyone.



I will Tee. I've got it on reserve at the library. Long list....but sometimes really good books move fast.
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Tacilija



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 156
Location: California, USA

PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, it seems once again I'm in the "did not like" camp all by myself LOL

There were 2 things that bothered me:

- writing was very choppy - every important scene ended before the important stuff happened and then we find out what happened much later, when one of the caracters remebers it...I know authors often do that, but in this case it was not seamless and it jarred me out of the story every single time;




SPOILER ALERT





- I think villain was waaay over the top; I just can't suspense my disbelief enough to accept that a cop (who was under investigation by IA) was allowed to put Laura "under protection" without a single comment from his superiors, and put her up at an expensive hotel, with room service and 24/7 protection from at least 4 policemen. I mean, who was paying for that? Maybe I'm jaded, or I read too many novels where cops struggle with insufficient funds LOL


Anyway, Play Dirty was a disappointing read after NR's High Noon (I was really surprised I liked it as much as I did, because romantic suspense is not my favorite reading)
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 3:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tacilija wrote:
...every important scene ended before the important stuff happened and then we find out what happened much later, when one of the caracters remebers it...I know authors often do that, but in this case it was not seamless and it jarred me out of the story every single time

The first time that writing technique came up, it pulled me away from the story for a bit, but then I got used to it, Tacilija. I found that it really didn't bother me that much as it went along.

The other thing you mentioned that bothered you is a spoiler so I won't put it into print here. I had no difficulty believing that about that person, though. I wrote in my original message that I could shoot some holes into some of the scenes, but they were ones that I could live with. At its best and worst, fiction can be a stretch. We all know that. If not, then we would have stories that totally resembled each other. That's where the creativity of each author comes into play; and as long as they don't tax the boundaries too badly, a lot of stuff can be somewhat believable. Truth can be stranger than fiction, or so it's said. My doubts in fiction come with ghosts, vampires, etc.

But that's okay that this book didn't work for you. I said that too in the first post. I really liked it a lot.
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dipperdocus



Joined: 24 Mar 2007
Posts: 165

PostPosted: Thu Aug 30, 2007 8:50 pm    Post subject: Play Dirty - romance/suspense ratio? Reply with quote

I was surprised to see SB's Play Dirty in paperback in our bookstores last week (Singapore). Since I enjoyed Ricochet, I grabbed Play Dirty without hesitation despite the surrogate father plot. After the way she handled Ricochet's hero & married heroine plot, I was confident she would handle PD well.

I have a question, though: what's the romance like? I used to love SB's romances because they were so sensual and the story revolved around the H & H. I am very leery these days of mainstream romantic suspense because of the suspense taking up most of the story. Is Play Dirty still a romance? Does it have the sensual sex scenes between the H & H (I don't recall SB ever writing 'hot' sex, just sensual ones.) or is it subtle and limited to the surrogate sex?
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 4209
Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Thu Aug 30, 2007 9:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Play Dirty - romance/suspense ratio? Reply with quote

dipperdocus wrote:
I have a question, though: what's the romance like? I used to love SB's romances because they were so sensual and the story revolved around the H & H. [....] Is Play Dirty still a romance? Does it have the sensual sex scenes between the H & H (I don't recall SB ever writing 'hot' sex, just sensual ones.) or is it subtle and limited to the surrogate sex?

Yes, dipperdocus, I believe it's a romance--not hot and heavy as some stories can be, but there's still a romance. Obviously, you know how the relationship begins because you mention the reason for it. But I think Brown did a good job of bringing them together and their emotions. Now some may not agree with me on this and that's okay. For my part, I did think so. I also felt she had humor in this one, especially with Griff. I like that too because sometimes she doesn't always include it. You mentioned suspense in relation to today's stuff that's out there. I thought she had a good balance between the suspense and the relationship. But don't go looking for page upon page of sweaty sex--it won't be there, but there is some. Just a good story to keep you company for a couple of days. As always, IMVHO, of course. Wink


Last edited by Tee on Fri Aug 31, 2007 6:37 am; edited 1 time in total
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