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REVIEW: Naked Games by Anne Rainey

Dear Ms. Rainey:

I am a logical person ergo I like my books to make sense. When characters do something, I want to understand them, see the path of their motivations. If they are confused, then I want to see them acknowledge their confusion, not blunder onward as if they are a drunken beast shambling down the road. In Naked Games,  I questioned the characters’ actions about every other chapter.

Naked Games Anne Rainey
About two months after her parents’ death, Catherine Michaels learns from her family doctor that she was adopted. Initially expressing anger at her parents, Catherine and her best friend Mary search the family home and find evidence of Catherine’s private adoption. The letters left in a secret drawer in her mother’s room reveal that Catherine’s biological mother was dead from liver failure but that she has a half sister, Gracie.  Catherine discovers that Gracie is alive and engaged to be married to Wade who has two siblings: Dean and Deanna. Deanna is coupled with Dean’s former military buddy, Jonah. Jonah and Wade are private investigators and Dean is a contractor.  It was obvious that both Deanna and Gracie were the stars of previous books.

The story starts out with Dean walking in on his woman with a ring in his pocket.  He is about to propose but instead, of course, finds her in bed with another man. Dean determines all women are untrustworthy.  When Catherine comes to meet Gracie, Dean is sure that Catherine is hiding something despite Catherine being thoroughly checked out by his family members who are actual private investigators.  Thus, their business is finding out the secrets of individuals.  Catherine has no secrets.  She is a law abiding citizen with a large bank account thanks to insurance proceeds and her own successful web design business.

After first meeting Dean and being insulted by him and then kissed by him, Catherine then decides to go spend the night with him.   WTF Catherine. This is your only family and if you want to spend holidays with them, does it make sense to fall into bed with the lone single brother in law to be of your newly found sister? Catherine doesn’t think about these issues.  WTF Dean. Why sleep with Catherine if you think she is totally untrustworthy. If it is just a booty call, surely there are plenty of hot women around town you could bring to your bed?

After the two of them sleep togehter, Catherine overhears Dean telling his sister Deanna he is going to get answers about Catherine. This makes Catherine run away. Dean resolves to make this better but before going after Catherine, he makes a detour to Jonah.  Find out all you can about her, Dean demands of Jonah. I know she is hiding something he reasserts. Then he leaves to convince Catherine that he was wrong and he deserves another chance. WTF Dean. If you don’t trust her, why are you going to her to beg forgiveness and ask for her to consider that your one night hookup with her was more meaningful than just a physical connection?  WTF Catherine. Why are you letting this jackhole into your room and into your body?

I think I am supposed to feel conflicted like Dean, only I’m not conflicted at all. I’m thinking Dean’s an asshole and Catherine is a dumbass.  The two continue on in stumbling in and out of bed with one another despite their obvious misgivings and in order for Dean to look like a hero, a suspense element is thrown in.  While the book had no apparent copyediting or grammatical errors, the storyline failed for me.  D.

Best regards,



Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Angela
    Aug 16, 2012 @ 09:10:26

    I tried reading So Sensitive by this author and determined she just wasn’t for me. Not being able to understand why characters are doing something was a big part of it.

  2. Ruthie
    Aug 16, 2012 @ 09:31:50

    I just peeked at the Amazon listing and saw a review that includes the line “fans will relish returning to Zanesville, Ohio, the BDSM capital of the world.” How did I not know this about Zanesville? I grew up near there!

  3. cleo
    Aug 16, 2012 @ 10:15:00

    I think I am supposed to feel conflicted like Dean, only I’m not conflicted at all. I’m thinking Dean’s an asshole and Catherine is a dumbass.

    Thank you Jane – reading this was exactly what I needed to make me smile this morning. (Sad, really, that the bad reviews sometimes put me in a better mood than the good ones)

  4. Loosheesh
    Aug 16, 2012 @ 16:56:33

    This review is good but the one you left at Goodreads was awesome, I must say. I now think of this book as the “Oh, la la la” book, lol.

  5. SonomaLass
    Aug 16, 2012 @ 16:57:44

    Cleo, that’s the same line I copied to quote! When romance doesn’t work for me, that’s often my response.

  6. Kelly
    Aug 16, 2012 @ 21:32:34


    Do you think they’ll paint that slogan on their water towers and welcome sign?

  7. KarenH.
    Aug 17, 2012 @ 02:30:18

    Okay, so when I’m doing my 1-70 Marathon across Ohio (on my Maryland to Illinois trek), mental note: “Be specific about what you want in Zanesville–I’m here for LUNCH, not “just a quick bite”” ;)

    (it looks so quiet and innocent from the freeway!)

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