Friday, February 4, 2011

Review: The Perfect Play by Jaci Burton

The Perfect Play by Jaci Burton
Play-by-Play #1
Contemporary Romance
February 1, 2011
Trade Paperback, 299 pages
Berkley Heat

As the star quarterback for the San Fransisco Sabers, Mick Riley is well accustom to having beautiful women fall at his feet. Although Mick is by no means starved for female attention, he is tired of being with women who are only interested in his money and fame. When Mick first meets Tara outside the team's locker room, he instantly attracted to her. Mick sees in Tara a women who is "normal" and completely opposite to the actresses and models his agent Liz usually sets him up with. While the pair only have a brief conversation, Mick decides he wants to get to know Tara better.

Tara Lincoln is a an event planner and owner of The Right Touch. Although her business is relatively new, she manages to land the job of planning the Sabers summer party. Tara knows that this party will make or break her business, so she is committed to making sure everything goes off without a hitch. During the party, Tara is approached by Mick and is stunned that he is so interested in talking to her since she usually sees him on the front page of gossip rags with the newest Hollywood it-girl.

While Tara and Mick soon find out that they have great chemistry both in and out of the bedroom. Tara is hesitant to enter into a relationship with Mick because she is a single mom, raising a teenage boy. With her first priority being her son, Nathan, she isn't used to making time for herself. Mick, however, knows that he wants more than just a one night stand, so he makes it his mission to convince Tara that they are good matter how difficult that may be.

First of all, let me just say that this cover is smoking hot! Jaci Burton even wrote that this is the best cover she has ever had and I couldn't agree more. Kudos to the Berkley Art Department! Also, if you are wondering, the cover model is Jed Hill. Google him, you will not be disappointed...

I found the beginning of the book a tad unbelievable. Although Mick and Tara first meet on page four, Tara admits that she likes being with him only a few pages later. During this time, Mick constantly refers to Tara as being "normal" and "real" and assumes she is not after his fame or money. I'm sorry, but there is no way that Mick or Tara would know all of this after just meeting. Mick also comes off as being very pushy in his pursuit of Tara. He just assumes that Tara would naturally want to be with him. And when Mick invites her up to his hotel room to talk, they quickly fall into bed. Really? That wasn't Mick's intention from the start?

Although I hard time getting into the book, I did like the rest of the novel. After the frenzy of the first few chapters, Burton does a good job in flushing out the characters different personalities and vulnerabilities. I enjoyed Tara's personal conflict in dealing with her growing feelings for Mick. Her first priority is Nathan and although she likes being with Mick, she doesn't let their relationship impede on her sons well being. She remains steadfast in her role as a single mother throughout the book, constantly worrying about how different events will affect Nathan. While Tara does eventually learn to accept new people into her life, she stays true to her character from beginning to end.

I also really enjoyed getting to know more bout Mick and his past. We learn that depite his fame, fortune, and good looks, life hasn't always been easy for Mick. Like Tara, he deals with the consequences of his past decisions everyday. I also enjoyed the scene where Mick, Tara, and Nathan travel to St. Louis to meets Mick's family. Tara gets to see a different side of Mick that is not privy to the spotlight. It really tugs at the heart strings.

The one thing I don't have any problems with is the sex scenes between Tara and Mick. Jaci Burton is certainly a master at her craft when it comes to the lovin'. The scene on the private island...wooh, I had to fan myself a bit after that one.

Despite a shaky start, I ended up really enjoying this book. Tara and Mick are both well-rounded and dynamic characters who stay true to themselves. I'm next book in the series is called Changing the Game and features Mick's yummy baseball player brother Gavin and their sports agent Liz. Changing the Game is out August 2, 2011.

Other Opinions:

Other books in the series:
Changing the Game (August 2, 2011)

1 comment:

  1. Great review Nicole!

    It's disappointing when a book starts off with the unbelievability factor but I'm glad that this one leveled out and I'm especially glad that the heroine stayed true to her character.

    And yawzaa! This is truly one hot cover. I'd like to blow it up an hang it on my wall. The hubs unfortunately wouldn't like that very much...sigh.