Fair Game by Monica Murphy

Oh come on now people, let’s make good choices!

What’s it About?

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Bad enough Jade Frost’s boyfriend drags her to a boring poker game. Even worse that he actually threw her into the betting pot during an intense round…and lost. Talk about the perfect excuse for Jade to make him her ex-boyfriend.

Now she supposedly belongs to the ultra rich, extremely gorgeous Shep Prescott. He could have anything he wants yet he seems to be in hot pursuit of her. No matter how rude, how snarky, how impossible she acts, it doesn’t stop him. More like her horrible behavior seems to make him want her more.

When she finds herself starting to fall for him, Jade’s confused. There’s more to Shep than the carefree rich charmer he portrays. No way could he want a serious relationship with her…or could he?

First Impressions

Mkay, so full disclosure moment here: I have never done cocaine in my entire life. Now, I know the ole saying, “don’t knock it til you try it”, although I have a feeling whoever came up with that saying didn’t necessarily mean it in reference to trying cocaine. What can I say?! I just never understood the appeal. Personally, I’d rather spend my money on going to the movies and buttered popcorn. I also have the irrational fear that if I did try it I’d immediately sneeze it out in a cloud of white powder. Kind of ruins my street cred.

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In this book, our female lead claims that she’s never been swayed by peer pressure, yet in the next scene she’s accepting a mirror of coke from some dweebs she just met at a college party. She then proceeds to blame her close call of snorting cocaine on the fact that our main male lead, Shep (who wasn’t present at all during this exchange), gets her all confused. Sooo…yeah, not my favorite character.

Some Imperfect Lead Characters

I can’t help it, I thought Jade was a pretty annoying character, and Shep wasn’t exactly a peach himself. He wins her from her boyfriend in a card game, which I’ll admit, was the main intriguing factor that moved me to pick up this book in the first place. The fact that the next day Jade is somehow the one apologizing to Shep kind of made me lose respect for her. I know violence is never the answer to life’s problems, but Jade slapped Shep after he won her. Honestly, can’t say I would’ve done anything different if a guy treated me like a commodity to be bartered. And yet, Shep manages to make her feel guilty for the way she treated him, without any acknowledgement of how he treated her like an object. Dude, not cool! On either of their parts!

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An Imperfect Plot

So the characters obviously weren’t my favorite aspect of the novel, but there was actually a much bigger reason as to why I didn’t enjoy this particular read. It had to do with the plot. Mainly, there wasn’t much of one. At all. What we have here is a classic tale of boy meets girl, she pushes him away despite her obvious attraction to him, they find some alternative ways to pleasure each other when she’s on her period, he runs, she teases, and eventually they have sex. Boom, there, you’re done. The only real struggle of the novel came when Shep introduced Jade to his parents, and his mom proceeds to call her a gold digger. No resolution to that little issue. Their relationship seems to be purely physical, as they never really manage to have a meaningful conversation.

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Series: The Rules, book 1. I miiiiiiiight read the next one.

Should you read it? Although well written overall, I felt it was a pretty boring read. The whole novel sort of leads up to…well…nothing. Basically just them having sex, and her baking him cookies. Sad to say I don’t see them as a forever couple.

Smut Level: Jade goes from never having an orgasm during sex to having 3-4 a night. Lucky girl.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $3.99 Kindle Price. Self-Published. 474 Pages.

BookExpo Roundup

I’m back from my glorious adventures at BookExpo America! Gather round, I’ve got stories.

The Unexpected

IMG_2198This was my first venture to BEA, so I really didn’t know what to expect. The most common piece of advice I heard for first timers was to wear comfortable shoes. I’ll admit, after three consecutive days of visiting booths and standing in line for autographs, my toes are a little sore. However, my shoulders ache something fierce! I figured I’d get a couple of free tote bags while I was there, but I never imagined I’d acquire about 10 lbs of free books every day. I actually had to buy another suitcase so that I could bring my clothes back home with me. Altogether, I hauled backed 36 books, 28 of which were signed. Now, did I lug back too many books? Ha! There’s no such thing as too many books.

The Highlights

Although each day was an adventure, what with the Bloggers Conference on day 1, and my first booth visits happening on day 2, the highlights of the trip definitely took place on the third and final day. While everyone was lining up bright and early Friday morning to see James Patterson, I was anxiously waiting for the doors to open so I could visit the Romance Writers of America booth for an author autograph signing. Seeing how many people were in front of me to enter the exhibit area filled me with dread (the line stretched around 1/2 of the convention center), as I was worried they’d run out of books by the time I arrived at the booth. But alas, the doors opened promptly at 9:00am, I made a mad dash for my designated booth, and was 5th in line to get my collection of romantic short stories, Premiere, signed by Sylvia Day (Crossfire series), Laura Kaye (Hearts in Darkness), and Monica Murphy (One Week Girlfriend series). That’s right people! I got one book signed by 3 amazing romance authors in one go. To say I got a little emotional will make me sound like a super freak, but ah hell, I got a little emotional!

IMG_2175So that was the first highlight of the day. The second came a bit later in the autographing area, where Laura Kaye was signing one of the novels from her Hard Ink series, Hard to Come By. I’m happy to say that I was actually first in line for the signing. When I saw that one of my favorite romance authors was going to be at BEA, and that I might actually have the opportunity to meet her, I couldn’t believe it. Not only do I think her book, Hearts in Darkness, is hands down the best romance novel to ever feature two people trapped in an elevator, but it was actually one of the first books to really inspire me to start blogging. That might sound strange to some of you, but after reading something I enjoyed so much, and having nobody I knew to share it with, blogging was an outlet for me. Getting not just one, but two novels signed by the impeccable Laura Kaye was an amazing experience, and one I’m not likely to forget. Especially since I have a photo of it!

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The Rest of BEA

Overall, I had a lot of fun! Everybody I met was so unbelievably nice, even the authors. I learned some good tips at the Bloggers Conference, especially when it comes to interacting with authors and publishers. Not feeling obligated to provide a review in exchange for a free book was a great piece of advice. The Harlequin booth had some awesome signings, as well as some delightful pics of ruggedly handsome hotties around their boothing area. The Ellora’s Cave booth was hilarious with their calendar models out front to lure in the ladies, and their tagline of, “Helping make Babies since 2000.” After all, romance novels are an aphrodisiac. Love it! Sure, I sort of felt like cattle being herded around in the autographing area, and my shoulders are still sore from carrying around so many books, but it was totally worth it!

IMG_2177Autographing Area

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Well hello there!

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Next Year BEA is Headed to Chicago!