Griff Burkett was a school-of-hard-knocks kid, abandoned by his mother, adopted by his high-school football coach. Under his tutelage, Griff earned a scholarship to play college ball and then a multimillion-dollar contract with the Dallas Cowboys. Griff had a good heart, but his Achilles heel was his arrogance, and his gambling. At the end of his career, deep in debt, a local organized-crime kingpin offers him a chance to resolve his loans by throwing a game. Griff agrees, and walks straight into an FBI sting.
After serving time, Griff finds only closed doors. Then he is summoned to the mansion of eccentric millionaire airline owner Foster Speakman. Speakman, a recluse since a car accident left him crippled, is impotent. He offers Griff half a million dollars to impregnate his wife Laura, discreetly, and with manifold rules. One of which is, if Griff succeeds, he will leave town and never see his child as long as he lives.
Griff has few options. He's still hounded by Detective Stanley Rodarte, who organized the gambling sting, and seems set upon ruining Griff's life. Griff has little means of earning a living, no family, and few friends. So he agrees - only to quickly realize he's been set up.
©2007 Sandra Brown Management, Ltd; (P)2007 Simon and Schuster Inc
"The tension builds as lust, greed, pride, wrath and envy threaten to undo everyone in this tightly told tale of modern temptation." (Publishers Weekly)
This is my third Sandra Brown book. I thoroughly enjoyed the "listen". Although I wouldn't rank it up with "Envy" which was the first Brown book I "read", it's twisting plot and unusual ending made it delightful and entertaining. Victor Slezak is wonderful as a narrator, so much so that I look for books with him telling the story.
One other comment: I noticed several customers commented negatively on the sexual scenes. That's absurd - all sexual scenes in Brown's books are an integral part of the story. There is nothing offensive; in fact, they are natural (isn't sex?) and Slezak handles it with such sensitivity.
Another Sandra Brown 'must listen'. Oh - and I just downloaded "Smash Uncut".
This book has some many twist and turns, I thought I was on a roller coaster and I LOVE roller coasters! I can not count how many times my jaw dropped when another plot twist hits you over the head and I usually can see them coming.
I have a 3 hour daily commute and I have listen to many of books, and this book is one of the best I have listened to. I can think of three books that I listen outside of my car and this book is one of them.
As a mystery, I enjoyed this book a lot more than some I've read recently. But reader be warned that it crosses the fine line into romance/erotica, so don't get this if you're not into that.
Don't you just love a great story well told?
First, you have to understand that Brown is the "ROMANCE/THRILLER" genre. I don't know how many others occupy that niche or if she created it but you're going to have lots of explicit intimacy. If you CAN get past that you'll see she creates amazingly original characters and winds and twists her plots to where you can't see things coming.
This book with a clever double entendre hints at the underlying and inevitable love story. You have a fantastic heroine a strong female, and a very corrupted and sad football player as the main characters. How they become involved in an extremely twisted way is what drives this story and gets you rooting (pun intended) for this "anti-hero."
The book is well narrated subtle but effective and well edited. After 32 audio-books I'm starting to hear the difference although I enjoy both "obvious acting" & "understated acting". Don't imply that his narration is dull. He narrates well, defines characters & their feelings enough to let Brown's powerful writing do it's job on your mind.
When it comes to fiction I'm willing to grant any writer a LOT of leeway for the very reason that it is FICTION. When writing becomes absolutely plausible the story is no longer a thriller but becomes "literature." (Fine but I often want to be entertained with original plots.) I have YET to be slightly disappointed by Brown's ability to hold my interest so invariably I WANT to keep listening every possible chance and run through a book in a few days (despite "rewinds"). I've never been bored except for the invariable lovemaking and all books are far better than a lot of other crummy books I've slogged through (or failed to finish.) Brown has a gift and while her penchant for many graphic sex scenes is part of her style... it's soon over and then you get on with a great story. Obviously these books are not books for little kids.
Brown writes great thrillers. If her work ever fails to entertain.. I'll let you know.
I personally loved this book. I considered not purchasing it because of the mixed reviews. If you liked "envy" you'll like this book.
Entertaining, but frequently melodramatic. Not the best author you've ever read, but if you're looking for something escapist and light, this will do. Great for airplanes and the beach. The main character spends far too much time feeling sorry for himself, and the love interest between the main characters seems unlikely.
Not quite what I expected but very good! Little twist in the plot ending made it even more interesting! Definately recommended!
Sandra Brown is by far my favorite author and each new book is better than the last. I had a little bit of trouble bonding with the hero and the nature of the book made it difficult to feel the romance between the two main characters, but the storyline kept me glued to my Ipod.
It was not entertaining. It was unpleasant and depressing. I wanted it to be over.
S. Brown is a talented writer. I don’t know what she was thinking when she chose this subject. Maybe she wanted to try something different. The only value I see is for athletes to learn from someone else’s mistakes. The hero Griff is a pro quarterback. He makes stupid choices. He does stupid things. He goes to jail. Everyone (the public) hates Griff for what he did. An evil cop is stalking Griff throughout the book. The cop beats up Griff and anyone who is a friend to Griff. The cop’s hatred of and power over Griff is depressing.
I can accept a flawed hero but I did not like the author misleading the reader by implying Griff was bad and later showing that he was not so bad. When some truths were revealed I was annoyed at the way the author had twisted things. See Spoiler 2 below.
I prefer stories told in a linear logical time line. I’m willing to accept some flashbacks, but this book is full of flashbacks and backstories. Examples: 1. A couple is going to have sex. The author then jumps to a future time. Later we hear what happened during that sex scene. 2. Griff has a meeting with someone. The author then jumps to a future time with Griff on the run from the cops. Later we get the backstory of what happened during that meeting causing Griff to be on the run. 3. Griff appears in someone’s hotel room. Later we learn how he got past the security cops to get there. 4. And then we hear what he did to get away from the cops earlier in item 2. This method allowed the author to take short cuts in the telling. For example in item 4 she only told “a few of the things Griff did while on the run” instead of having us in his mind and seeing his actions while running.
The publisher’s blurb says millionaire Foster hires Griff to impregnate his wife Laura. It says Griff quickly realizes he’s been set up. I would not describe it that way. There is no complicated “set up.” And it’s not “quickly realizes.” See Spoiler 1 below.
Don’t read this for romance, although there is a hint of future romance at the end. I liked the happy ending for Griff.
The narrator Victor Slezak was excellent.
Genre: mystery suspense thriller.
1. Regarding the blurb: It’s not a complicated set up. It’s simply kill the guy instead of pay him.
2. Author contrivances that annoyed me. A guy planned to do something bad, but doesn’t do it, but he felt guilty so he confessed to doing it. In another case as a teen he took the blame without explaining things. Another, an innocent person touches a murder weapon leaving his prints on it.
This is another great book by Sandra Brown. I am a new listener and have made it my goal to have all of her audio's. I have never been disapointed... ever.
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