The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
A book review by Mina Nguyen
The Inheritance Games is a truly captivating, thrilling young adult series. Essentially, Avery Grambs grew up with no connections and no money; she grew up with nothing. Her only plans are to finish high school and win a scholarship. All of a sudden, however, Avery is left with the entire fortune of billionaire Tobias Hawthorne who she has absolutely no connections to. The only clue she has is the beginning of a riddle that might lead her to the answers of why she was so lucky enough to inherit billions over his four Hawthorne grandsons. Heir apparent Grayson Hawthorne believes that Avery has conned her way into the top while Jameson Hawthrone sees Avery as another riddle Tobias has left behind to figure out. As Avery learns to associate with this new world of cutthroat wealth, she must also learn how to play the game in order to survive.
I want to preface this by saying that I’ve recently finished the third book, The Final Gambit, but I will only be reviewing the series as a whole and minor details from the first book due to spoilers and certain plot developments. This series is amazing. My only regret with this series is that I didn’t start it earlier. It’s well-deserving of the hype it got over social media. It’s so original that sometimes I couldn’t believe how the author connected everything together; this series definitely took some planning to get all the dots to connect. The riddles were extremely well thought out, down to the names of each character. You really wouldn’t think that names have importances, but this author makes everything a clue. I can’t get my mind wrapped around how Barnes managed to tie it all together into one big picture or even keep her head straight while making everything related with one ulterior motive in mind. I remember flipping the pages constantly at 12 in the morning because the clues kept coming and I needed to know what happened next. I finished the first and second book in one sitting; it was seriously that great!
While this book is not strictly a romance and it’s a subplot in this series, we have to discuss the love triangle in this book. I’m not a big fan of love triangles (they’re probably my least favorite romance tropes). I don’t like love triangles because they’re usually not well done, and it’s very obvious who the main character ends up choosing; however, this book made it difficult to decide. I don’t think I really had a “team” until the end of the second book because both choices were so great and Avery had chemistry with both characters. It was honestly so hard to pick. Barnes did a great job of making both options great choices to the point where I wouldn’t be mad if she ended up with either boy. I am, however, more of a Jameson girl, but I am open to debate because I do also love Grayson a lot. It’s really hard to decide. I was going back and forth between the two for the longest time. I also love that throughout the series, it never solely focused on the romance and continued to be about the riddles and the mystery.
You have to read this book. Personally, I find it worth the hype, and I could see all levels of readers enjoying this book. The mysteries were so well throughout and everything connected the end with no plot holes. I’m still amazed how Barnes connected everything together; she had to solve her own riddles and puzzles and incorporate that into the book which is so incredible in itself. This is a great read if you want something thrilling but don’t know what to pick up; it’s short but manages to hit all the points you want in an enjoyable read.
One of Us is Lying by Karen McManus / A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson / Caraval by Stephanie Garber/ We Were Liars by E. Lockhart / The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides