The #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Black Dagger Brotherhood delivers the first novel in an enthralling new series set amid the shifting dynamics of a Southern family defined by wealth and privilege—and compromised by secrets, deceit, and scandal....
For generations, the Bradford family has worn the mantle of kings of the bourbon capital of the world. Their sustained wealth has afforded them prestige and privilege—as well as a hard-won division of class on their sprawling estate, Easterly. Upstairs, a dynasty that by all appearances plays by the rules of good fortune and good taste. Downstairs, the staff who work tirelessly to maintain the impeccable Bradford facade. And never the twain shall meet.
For Lizzie King, Easterly’s head gardener, crossing that divide nearly ruined her life. Falling in love with Tulane, the prodigal son of the bourbon dynasty, was nothing that she intended or wanted—and their bitter breakup only served to prove her instincts were right. Now, after two years of staying away, Tulane is finally coming home again, and he is bringing the past with him. No one will be left unmarked: not Tulane’s beautiful and ruthless wife; not his older brother, whose bitterness and bad blood know no bounds; and especially not the ironfisted Bradford patriarch, a man with few morals, fewer scruples, and many, many terrible secrets.
As family tensions—professional and intimately private—ignite, Easterly and all its inhabitants are thrown into the grips of an irrevocable transformation, and only the cunning will survive.
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Now is the time when I try and write a coherent review. Which will then be followed by loquaciousness via ~I
My thoughts: I think I had set my expectations really high for this series. I probably shouldn't have, because that usually only ends in disaster, but this book not only met them but surpassed them.
I will start by saying that the first (maybe) 20% of this book is a little slow going. You are meeting new characters and getting familiar with the settings etc. But once the initial "introduction" is out of the way- BAM off we go.
This book was amazing. It was unputdownable for me.
- Did I mention scandal
But more than that, at the heart of this is a cast of some really great characters. The ones you love, the ones you know you will love to hate, the ones that you hope are killed off by the end of each chapter.
I cried while reading this book. Hell, I sobbed while reading this book. I felt real hate while reading this book. I also felt unconditional love while reading this book. I talked out loud to these characters, I gasp, I held my breath and I realized there is a fine line between "Fangirl" and "Psychotic" and then..... I rejected that line.
I NEED book two, like, physically, NEED it. I have so many thoughts and theories and things going on in my head. I honestly can not remember the last time I have been this way over a new series. The speculations are endless. I want to keep this review spoiler free so I will bring it to an end.
But first I want to say this..... If you were reluctant to get this book because it's not her usual Paranormal, or even something as simple as the higher eBook price, I would strongly advise you go ahead an get it. The book is worth the price and you will not miss the paranormal aspect. It is fantastic.
And now for the review that actually covers the story (FACE PALM) unlike some people ^^.
Thoughts by ~I: It’s safe to say that most of you know that we are J.R. Ward’s super fans… As such I waited for this book with much hope and a little trepidation. I mean I am accustomed to extreme vampire sexiness.. could she hold my attention by writing a story about mere mortals??? UMMM Hello! This is J.R. Ward….. ABSOLUTELY…
I will not lie. The beginning of this book was slow going but expected I mean we are being introduced to everyone. It’s also a little misleading.. The main character, Lane is presented as the epitome of a rich bachelor. Poker, booze, and women seem like the norm for him until he gets the phone call that he is needed at home… Enter DRAMA…
We are introduced to Lizzie, (Lane’s HEA) the horticulturist … I laughed at this… of course she’s the gardener LOL and his family which includes his childhood nanny (who he considers his mother) and GASP his wife.. yeah you HEARD me.. WIFE…. Insert MAJOR side eye on this one…. Internally I was like… this CAN NOT BE.. I never root for the homewrecker *picture my palm on my forehead and me shaking my head…* but I pressed on and immediately felt better.
The drama, lies, backstory and character development made this book amazing! Ten minutes in I was crying because you could feel the love and loyalty between certain characters followed by anger and despair towards the manipulative and deceitful ones… I’m looking at you Chantal AND CREW….
These characters are flawed and some seem damaged beyond repair but there is a glimmer of hope and resilience within them that I am dying to see develop.
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