Title: The Lover’s Game
Series: No Exceptions (#2)
Author: J.C. Reed
Release Date: September 9, 2014
Rating: 4 stars
Recommended for: those who have read J.C. Reed’s previous series
Note: I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review
About The Lover’s Game:
After having her heart broken, Brooke tries to rebuild her life and closes herself off from the one man she loved deeply. When she meets Grayson, a photographer, she has no idea that her new boss will offer her more than she bargained for. The pay is great, her new friends more than welcoming and everything seems to be running well…until everyone insists she find herself a new suitor during a night out.
Jett knows how to play games. He is used to getting attention from everyone except the beautiful dark haired woman who doesn’t like to be fooled with and doesn’t trust him as far as she can spit. He wants Brooke but, more than that, he wants to own her, and the only way to get her is to make her owe him…against her will.
And what Jett owns, Jett keeps forever.
Like with the first book, this book was great except for the fact that I was very confused. I’m starting to think maybe this series shouldn’t be considered a standalone to the previous series featuring these characters. While the story is separate, it seems, the characters reference the past enough and I have no idea what they’re talking about. If the suspenseful stuff wasn’t so good, the confusion would probably be enough for me to put the books down.
Another downside of this book is how whiny Brooke is. She’s very broken-hearted and I can relate to that, but I feel like we don’t see that through her actions. We don’t see her cry or stay in bed or talk about her feelings. We hear her thinking that she’ll never go on and that she hates him, while the action stuff is glossed over with sentencers like, “I told her the whole story.” It goes against the “show, don’t tell” thing that will really pull you into a story and make it feel real.
But I loved everything revolving around Brooke’s (or should I say…Jenna’s?) new job. Even before the stuff in the last chapter, it raised all kinds of red flags for me and I loved trying to connect the dots (I couldn’t, by the way). Thalia painted the job as something way too good to be true, Grayson is quite a character, and Gina is a total trip (I don’t like her). Even before the bombs dropped on the last page, you knew this job would bring trouble into Brooke’s life.
The only plot-related issue I had is that nothing really moved forward between Brooke and Jett. Yes, they saw each other and Jett kind of spoke his mind, but he didn’t explain anything and we didn’t learn anything we didn’t know he was going to say. So nothing has been resolved with that Jett stuff, and then you get another pile of Jett stuff dropped on you at the end.
And there’s just really something I need to say to Brooke: Make. Better. Life. Choices. Do not drink, even just a sip, when you are pregnant (this came up in the first book, too). Don’t accept drinks from someone you just met. Don’t leave a club with someone you just met. If you think someone is following you, go inside instead of looking around outside for a few minutes longer. Jesus, girl. I feel like Whoopi in Ghost: “Brooke, you in danger girl.”
About J.C. Reed:
J.C. Reed is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of SURRENDER YOUR LOVE series. She writes steamy contemporary fiction with a touch of mystery. When she’s not typing away on her keyboard, forgetting the world around her, she dreams of returning to the beautiful mountains of Wyoming. You can also find her chatting on Facebook with her readers or spending time with her two children.