By Stephanie Hanlon
The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynne Barnes (released September 3 2020) is a suspense filled thriller which follows a down-in-her-luck teen who inherits a mysterious dead man’s fortune. The trouble is, she has no idea who the dead man is and his abundance of heirs are less than pleased to see their fortune handed to a stranger.
Overall, the mystery of the story is well laid out with many red herrings and plot devices which allow the reader to continually guess at not only why Avery has been left the inheritance, but also the mystery surrounding a character who died a year previously. The plot twists and final reveals are handled well, and the novel is filled with suspense that enhances the reader’s experience.
The characterisation is impeccable, and each character comes with their own voice, each distinct and unique in a way which is incredibly executed by Barnes. Nash, for example, though a minor character, has an incredibly strong voice which can be identified with barely any words.
One character who seems to let down this novel is Max, who’s childlike substitutions for curse words is unrealistic and grating for a character of her age. She seems to add little to the novel, save for a few sentences towards the end, and any subsequent titles will have to work hard to make her a likeable character.
The potential romance which stems within the novel seems forced at times and uncomfortable at others, though whether this is done to create distrust towards the brothers cannot be said.
The pacing is slightly skewed, with much of the plot coming in the last quarter of the novel, though this serves the mystery genre well. This novel is a wonderful example of mystery for the YA readership and the sequel will hopefully tie up any of the seemingly loose ends which come at the end of the novel.
Overall, The Inheritance Games is a fun and easy read, filled with twists and turns to keep any reader playing the game, as it were. ★★★★☆
Featured image credit: femalefirst.co.uk