Friday, July 08, 2011

Review: Playing the Game by Barbara Taylor Bradford (audio book)

From the back of the audio case: Annette Remmington, a London art consultant and private dealer, is at the top of her game. She is considered a rising star in the international world of art, with a roster of wealthy clients who trust her judgment and her business acumen. Her success reaches new heights when a rare and long-lost Rembrandt finds its way into her hands. When she restores it and sells it for top dollars at the auction of the year, Annette becomes the most talked-about art dealer in the world.

Annette is married to her mentor and personal champion, the much older Marius Remmington. For twenty years, Marius has groomed her to be the international art star that she has become, not to mention saving her from a dark and gritty past. She is his pride and joy, and as her best adviser, he handpicks with great care only the best journalist possible to do a profile on his beloved wife in a popular London Sunday newspaper. Jack Chalmers is a bit of a celebrity himself, having become one of the star journalists of his time. Marius believes only he will be able to capture the true brilliance of his lovely wife.

But Marius never intends to put his marriage in jeopardy. How could he have known that the connection between Jack and Annette would ignite so many secrets? And how could he have guessed that Jack would uncover a scandal that could ultimately destroy them all?

Barbara Taylor Bradford does it again in this captivating, epic novel of seduction, passion, and international intrigue. Playing the game has never been so thrilling.

Read by: Catherine Harvey

My thoughts: I really enjoyed this story and found myself wanting to get in the car just so I could continue listening to it. I've read many of Barbara Taylor Bradford's books before and have loved them all, especially her Woman of Substance series. Her books are always intriguing and full of depth and this one was no exception.

Playing the Game is the story of Annette Remmington, a rising star in the art world, and her struggles to succeed in not only her art consultant business but in her personal life as well. Married to the controlling, manipulative Marius, Annette's life is turned upside down when she starts to fall for the young journalist, Jack Chalmers, who confesses his love for her. As the story progresses, we start to learn the truths about Annette's past and why it continues to haunt her in her present life. With the information being released bit by bit, it creates the sense of mystery and keeps you hooked. What happened in Annette's past and how does that have any bearing on her life today? The characters were well developed and I loved the little bit of personality that the narrator gave each one. The relationship between Annette and her sister, Laurie, was real and touching, while Marius was a character you couldn't help but dislike. I loved being immersed in the art world, a world I know virtually nothing about. Filled with interesting facts about fine art, art restoration and art forgery, I found myself hooked and didn't want the story to end. 

I love that Barbara Taylor Bradford's books are usually long and involved stories - they make the perfect books to listen to. This was the first one of hers that I chose audio over book and was quite happy with that choice. I am now going to go back and see if more of her books are available on audio.

(I borrowed this audio book from the library.)


  1. That sounds like a good one. Thanks for a great review!

  2. Sounds really interesting. I don't list to many audio books, but I feel like this story would be great in text too. The story sounds incredibly interesting. And I would love to learn a little bit about art -- I know absolutely nothing. I feel so clueless when I walk through art museums (which I love). It sounds like Barbara Taylor Bradford is an author to watch out for.


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