Title: Fair Game (The Rules #1)
Author: Monica Murphy
Release Date: May 12, 2015
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. Now way could he want a serious relationship with her…or could he?
So far 2015 has been a fantastic year for New Adult reads for me, especially when it comes to self-published New Adult. Having let go of a lot of my prejudices against self-published books has allowed me to find a whole lot of new stories to love. And that includes Monica Murphy’s Fair Game.
Jade didn’t want to go to the poker game that night. But her boyfriend dragged her and so she went. At least her best friend is there so she has someone to complain to. But then the night takes a turn for the worse when her soon-to-be ex-boyfriend decides to bet her when he runs out of money. And he loses. And it that wasn’t bad enough, the person she now “belong” to is Shep Prescott, the most gorgeous guy on campus…who also happens to be a complete asshole. But no matter how much Jade tries to get rid of him, Shep just keeps coming back, determined to win her over. And Shep’s persistence is working. Much to her surprise, Jade finds herself starting to fall for Shep and that confuses her more than anything else.
Until not so long ago, I was full of prejudice when it came to self-published books. I had had bad experiences with them in the past and it had made me write off pretty much any and all self-published books. But in the last year or so, I started getting over those prejudices, reading books by authors I knew or that were recommended to me by people whose opinions I trust. And that allows me to discover all these new stories that I love, especially New Adult ones. So that was my long-winded way of saying that I’m glad I got over my hang-ups with self-published books because otherwise I never would have read Monica Murphy’s Fair Game and that would have been a shame. Despite being a little thrown by the premise at first—I mean, a girl gets put up as a bet in a high stakes poker game, which is not exactly okay—I found myself getting all caught up in this story. The way Jade being offered up as a bet in the poker game was handled is what first sold me on the story when I was reading. From the moment it happens, it’s made clear that this is far from an okay thing to do and Jade is going to do everything she can to fight it. Which leads to rest of the story which was all kinds of fun. I loved the slow development of the romance between Jade and Shep, and how that relatively slow build led to some of the best banter I have read in a while. Needless to say, I loved reading Fair Game.
I loved Jade. Right from the start, it was almost like I developed a girl crush on her. The way she chewed out both her (ex-)boyfriend and Shep when they throw her in the betting pot during their poker game. She would just not take any crap from either of them. I loved how independent she was and how much she wasn’t afraid to stand up for herself. But I also loved who she was when she was with Shep, if only for the awesome banter thing these two had going. So many times, I wanted to laugh out loud when I reading the back and forth between the two of them. It was just great. And Shep, was so not who I thought he was going to be. The synopsis for the book makes it sound like he’s going to be one way, but that’s not who he was at all. There was so much more to him than I initially thought there was going to be. And, much like Jade ended up being, I was pretty much powerless against him. He totally charmed me and I fell for him a little (okay, a lot) while I was reading.
I absolutely loved Monica Murphy’s Fair Game. This was a fun story with romance that hit all the right notes for this reader. I can’t wait to read more in this world in In the Dark.