The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Well, I think we can say 2022 is starting well, at least for my reading!

Themes: YA, mystery

The synopsis

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.

The review

I’ll begin by saying that I’m truly impressed by the work done by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. In this quest to find why Avery has become the heiress of this unknown billionaire and to solve the enigmas he left behind him, every single detail counts, has a meaning, or is even a new mystery itself. Even the house is supporting that by being full of mechanisms, hidden symbols or passages. Everything is complex in this book, from the characters to the events happening. And that so much that when I thought I had solved the identity of the person behind one of the events, I was totally wrong! And even with the resolution of one mystery, I remained intrigued to discover more and to learn about every characters’ secrets.

I also loved the story that is used as a basis for these mysteries and the characters. Avery is the perfect Cinderella, smart, cunning, and absolutely not shy. Each character is well fleshed out and particularly the four brothers that have very different personalities. I also liked how the author is differentiating them from one another but also succeeds in linking all of them with her writing. The short chapters made me fly through the book but each was complete enough to make the action happen quickly, without being to overwhelming.

Really, the only thing that bothered me was Avery’s behaviour towards Grayson and Jameson. She’s criticising Emily’s behaviour but is doing absolutely the same by not choosing between them!

In brief: I can’t wait to read the next books of this series, there is still so much to discover! If you like mysteries, the complexity of this book should please you and for once, all the characters are developed enough to allow the reader to take an interest in them.

My rating: 5/5

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