Play Dirty is the second book in the Devil's Share series by L.P. Maxa. Before reading the first book in the series, Play Nice, I hadn't read anything by L.P. Maxa, but that book made me an instant fan. Maxa's writing is fun and sexy, and I love the emotions that she is able to bring out as well. So when I finished Play Nice, I couldn't wait to get more of these sexy rockstars. Though I am still really partial to Lexi and Dash, I enjoyed Dylan and Smith's story and couldn't get enough of them.
Smith James, bassist for Devil's snare, is used to enjoying women and drugs to escape his past. Though he doesn't need the drugs, he likes them and doesn't want to quit. But when Dylan Lawson joins the tour in order to look out for Lexi and her baby, Smith finally sees a reason to give up the women and drugs. Dylan can tell that Smith uses, and while she doesn't condemn him for that she also can't be with someone who is caught up in drugs after losing her high school boyfriend to them. But the more time they spend together, the more Dylan sees that Smith is changing. When the tour takes them to Smith's hometown though, his past comes back and threatens everything that they are trying to build.
Smith was complicated and I was really interested in his character from the beginning. He had so much in his past and beneath the surface, and he didn't let a lot of people in. Though he was a good guy, he was also struggling with some guilt and painful family memories. Dylan was so good for him, and I really liked how she was with him right away. Though she knew he was a bit of a bad boy, she didn't let that stop her from seeing where things between them could go. Dylan was smart and funny, and I liked how well she fit in with the band right away. She was extremely likable, and I loved that she was able to hold her own. These two connected emotional and I enjoyed seeing them get to know one another. Watching Smith transform from the guy that lived for drugs and casual sex to being the caring and sexy boyfriend content to stay at home and watch movies with his girl was a lot of fun. The chemistry between them was smoking hot and the sparks were flying from the start. But it was seeing them fall for one another and grow closer that I really enjoyed the most.
Overall, I love this series and Play Dirty was such a great addition. I was worried that since I loved Play Nice so much that this book wouldn't be able to live up to the expectations I had because of that, but that absolutely wasn't the case. L.P. Maxa brought the heat, emotions, and humor that she did the first time around and I felt like she really did the characters justice here. This wasn't just another rockstar story, and I was so glad that Smith and Dylan's story was so genuine and believable. This group of characters is one of my favorites, and the camaraderie between them is unlike any other I have read before. Each character is unique and different, and while they are flawed they are easy to relate to and root for. If you are looking for a great contemporary romance this series is one I would highly recommend. I think that readers will really enjoy these books as much as I have, and I am already anxious for the next book after how L.P. Maxa left us set up at the end of Play Dirty.
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