I first discovered Jennifer Lynn Barnes’ mind-twisting mysteries with her most recent duology beginning with Little White Lies. When I heard she was writing a new duology filled with riddles and and a mysterious mansion, I could not wait to get my hands on it.
Title: The Inheritance Games (The Inheritance Games, #1)
Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: September 1, 2020
Genres: YA Mystery
I received an ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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.
This book has some serious Knives Out vibes: big house, eccentric family, a scrappy and resourceful young woman who inherits everything… but it veers away from HOW the billionaire died and WHY the billionaire left Avery everything. There are riddles, clues, and secret passages, and no one you can trust. This novel is breathlessly fast-paced with several plot twists that had my heart pounding every time. I was completely lost in the mystery.
Avery Grambs knows what she wants and knows how she’s going to get it… until everything is upended. Even when everything goes haywire, she lands on her feet and rushes head on into the mystery. Her love and relationship with her sister Libby is beautiful and complex in the best ways. I just loved being in her smart, sometimes reckless, usually resourceful head. I also loved getting to know the four grandsons in this book—each have very unique quirks that give them very separate, very appealing personalities. There is a touch of romance, but it doesn’t overpower the plot, just enhances it as needed.
- This is the beginning of a duology, so be prepared for some loose ends that will (hopefully) be wrapped up in the sequel. I have so many theories!
This is such a fun book! I would definitely recommend this to fans of Truly Devious and Knives Out! I cannot wait for the sequel (why is it so far away???)