Sandra Brown’s ‘Play Dirty’ nothing more than dirty trick

Kendra Ward

In Sandra Brown’s novel “Play Dirty,” Griff Burkett is an ex-Cowboy quarterback who just finished his five-year sentence in prison for cheating at a very important game. Since he lives in a state where football is king, his prospects are very slim until he meets with Foster Speakman, who presents a very interesting way for Burkett to make $600,000 very quickly.

Speakman is a paraplegic and wants very badly to have children with his beautiful wife, Laura. Because of his condition he is unable to conceive a baby, and for that Laura blames herself. Speakman decides to pay Burkett a lot of money to be a surrogate father.

Burkett is now involved in more scandal as his enemy, Rodarte, tries to find any evidence that Burkett is not only guilty of gambling and throwing an important football game, but of murder.

The book seemed like a graphic romance novel trying to hide under the guise of a thriller. I have never read Sandra Brown before so I didn’t really know what to expect, but the inside cover was deceptive. I honestly did not want to know about the characters’ sexual fantasies and escapades, and even if I ever did, I would look for an entirely different genre. The main plot was pretty odd in general, and the characters just aren’t very likeable.

The book claims “hairpin turns of plot along the way.” Several of those “hairpin turns” I saw coming chapters before they occurred. Some of the twists were just flat-out disappointments because it seemed stretched and unlikely, including the bland love story.

The only reason I finished it was to see if my guesses of the plot were correct, and they were. I wouldn’t say it was a terrible book. As a thriller, it wasn’t a horrible story, but the unconvincing romance laced through the plot made it worse. I look back and wish I hadn’t even taken it off the shelf.