Monday, 17 September 2012

Review: Splendour by Anna Godberson

**Beware Spoilers Ahead!!**

Pages- 391


New Beginnings.

Shocking Revelations.

Unexpected Endings.

As spring turns into summer, Elizabeth relishes her new roles as a young wife, while her sister, Diana, searches for adventure abroad. But when a surprising clue about their father's death comes to light, the Holland girls wonder at what cost a life of splendour comes.Carolina Broad, society's newest darling, fans a flame from her past, oblivious to how it might burn her future.

 Penelope Schoonmaker is finally Manhattan royalty - but when a real prince visits the city, she covets a title that comes with a crown. Her husband, Henry, bravely went to war, only to discover that his father's rule extends well beyond New York's shores and that fighting for love may prove a losing battle.

In the dramatic conclusion to the bestselling Luxe series, New York's most dazzling socialites chase dreams, cling to promises, and tempt fate. As society watches what will become of the city's oldest families and newest fortunes, one question remains: Will its stars fade away or will they shine ever brighter?

My Review:

Okay, there may be some spoilers in this review as it is the final book in the Luxe series. Let me start by highlighting how stunning the cover of this novel is. I mean look at that gorgeous dress! I purchased this book three years ago, when I was reading the entire series all together but for some reason I started it and did not finish it. It is only recently, that I've made friends with some very nice people, who encouraged me to read it. So I read the plot summary's of the previous books in the series and started the book. I read the book over a few days . I am sick with a sore throat and a cold, so I enjoyed lying in bed finishing this book.

The plot of this book was really interesting. There was a lot of twist and turns to keep the reader wanting more, I was hooked by the time I was 50 pages in. I also realised that when I was reading the series a few years ago, I never found it odd that their fathers death was not discussed or mentioned much at all by the characters. It is only in this novel that I began to think, how did their father die? I was so interested in finding that out, that I had started to suspect all kinds of people.

I also liked the many love triangles and relationship developments in this book.  From the failing marriage between Henry and Penelope, Henry and Diana, Snowden and Elizabeth, Carolina and Leland etc., It was so entertaining reading about the development of each relationship and I know some people find the many jumps in narrative of this novel to be confusing but I found it entertaining. I loved the character development in this novel. I thought it was especially evident in Diana's character. She was the baby of the family but by the end of the novel we see she really has matured into her true identity as an adult.

 Also, in the previous novels I really disliked Penelope and Carolina as characters. I found them both power hungry and selfish, but by the end of this novel I realised that Splendour had changed my opinions on them entirely. I know realise that Carolina just wanted to have a position in society that she could be proud of, and Penelope, I felt bad for her because Henry didn't love her and she felt unloved. Another character I'd like to talk about is Snowden, now I won't give too much away but I will say this: ....Whaaaaaaaaaaaat?! That is all.

Godberson has a very elegant, vintage writing style. She writes ballroom scenes as if she has travelled from the 1800's. She writes with such beautiful descriptions of the ballrooms and the clothes that you feel you become apart of the world. She also writes very flowing and witty dialogue that is so entertaining to read.

The only part of the book I disliked was the ending. Now, obviously I am not going to give the ending away, but I will say that I felt it was too short an ending. It felt very abrupt . The ending of the entire series summed up in about 8 sentences? I felt Godberson could have done a better job on the ending and the turn in Henry & Diana's relationship, but other than those points I felt the book was a really good ending to the series. This is a series I could not recommend enough.


Four stars
* * * *

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