A Cinderella story with deadly stakes and thrilling twists, perfect for fans of One of Us is Lying and Knives Out.
Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why–or even who Tobias Hawthorne is. To receive her inheritance, Avery must move into sprawling, secret passage-filled Hawthorne House, where every room bears the old man’s touch–and his love of puzzles, riddles, and codes.
Unfortunately for Avery, Hawthorne House is also occupied by the family that Tobias Hawthorne just dispossessed. This includes the four Hawthorne grandsons: dangerous, magnetic, brilliant boys who grew up with every expectation that one day, they would inherit billions. Heir apparent Grayson Hawthorne is convinced that Avery must be a con-woman, and he’s determined to take her down. His brother, Jameson, views her as their grandfather’s last hurrah: a twisted riddle, a puzzle to be solved. Caught in a world of wealth and privilege, with danger around every turn, Avery will have to play the game herself just to survive.
Review: 5 Stars
This book was so much fun to read! Jennifer Lynn Barnes has been one of my favorite authors for years, but this book truly reminded me just how much talent she has in the art of storytelling. I love books like this that are full of riddles and set in mansions that are full of secret passageways. Parts of this book reminded me of Tuesday Mooney Talks to Ghosts, since in both books there is a giant puzzle that a billionaire designed, but outside of that these two books are very different and super unique in their own ways.
The characters were all incredibly well done and each had their own quirks and personality. Avery is the main character and she is full of compassion, but she was also incredibly determined and was making the best of her poor situation before she suddenly inherited billions from Tobias Hawthorne. There was a bit of a love triangle between Avery and two of the Hawthorne grandsons, Grayson and Jameson, but I actually really enjoyed the love triangle and I could never decide which boy I was rooting for.
All four of the Hawthorne grandsons were fascinating and I could see how someone could be attracted to any of them. Xander, the youngest, was really funny and interested in robots. He was easy to love, but while he isn’t a huge part of the book the ending makes it clear he will have a larger role in book 2. Jameson was a bit broken and was really into riddles and the game. He was witty and took risks, but had a vulnerable side to him. Grayson was the heir apparent, so he became serious and involved in the Hawthorne’s charity foundation. He was extremely suspicious of Avery and even mean to her at times, but there was an undeniable attraction between the two of them. Nash was a bit of a cowboy and had no interest in the money. He had a bit of a savior complex and a really great heart. They were all entertaining and I had no trouble remembering who was who since they each had such distinct personalities.
The plot was incredible. This book was a really fast paced read. The chapters were short and the game was so much fun that I had a hard time setting the book down. This book kept me guessing and on my toes. I never knew what was coming next and the twist at the end totally caught me by surprise. I picked this book up thinking it was going to be about a fight over inheritance, but it wound up being so much more entertaining than that and was about riddles, puzzles and cute boys.
The Inheritance Games is Jennifer Lynn Barnes at her finest. long term fans will be blown away and those who have never read her books will be begging for more. This was such a fun, fast read and I was so thrilled to find out there will be a sequel once I got to the end. If you enjoy YA books, puzzles, or are just looking for something fun to read I highly recommend The Inheritance Games.