review: Midnight Play

Author: Lisa Marie Perry
Harlequin Kimani Romance
Published: 01 July 2014

Reasons I Might Actually Remember This One: The nightmarish parents, who are never reduced to caricatures but who are genuinely awful in their inability to see how their pursuit of success has harmed their daughters. They’re so well-written you actually get mad at them at several points (and yet there’s almost room for a glimmer of sympathy when you wonder what lies beneath that obsessive drive).

Disclosure: I received an author’s review copy in return for a fair and honest review.

I was expecting huge things from the second entry in the Blue Dynasty series, and Midnight Play delivered.

This isn’t just a romance series: it’s an exploration of the fall-out when well meaning, success-seeking parents demand “perfection” from their children. All three of the wealthy, gorgeous Blue daughters have issues, and Midnight Play is Danica’s story.

As in any romance novel, this is also about the power of love to correct and complete life, but in these books it’s never presented as an easy answer or something tacked-on. Instead, the process of falling in love with bad-boy football player Dex Harper is the impetus for Danica to re-examine her life and priorities. She has to wrestle with the pain of giving up her role within the family as the good, rule-obeying daughter as a step to finding out what she really wants. Being in love doesn’t make any of that easy, but it does make it worthwhile.

A couple of personal (and spoiler-y) notes: I wasn’t expecting to like Danica as much as I did, because of the way she failed to have her sister’s back in book one. But this book rapidly brought home how lonely it can be to be the “good” daughter and try so hard to live up to other people’s standards.

Also Martha, the youngest sister, has become my favourite person in the Blue family. She’s awesome, and I look forward to seeing more of her.

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