The final gambit by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

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Finally, fans of The inheritance games and The Hawthorne Legacy will have all the questions that came up in these first two books answered, as well as some twisty riddles to try and solve and a powerful opponent to face in the final book in the series.

Avery has lasted almost a year at Hawthorne House and is almost set to inherit the billions that Tobias Hawthorne has left her. Then a familiar face turns up and she knows that she must solve the last problem that Tobias has left. With the help of the Hawthorne brothers, she pits her wits and intelligence against an unknown adversary, prepared to lose everything in the game.

As with the first two in the series, the reader is kept immersed in the riddles that surround Avery. In her determined way she goes about solving the clues to the mystery of the identity of the ruthless person who is threatening everything, and in a thrilling chess game she tries to outwit her opponent.

All the Hawthorne brothers, with Rebecca and Thea, and Avery's sister, play a part helping her to solve the mysteries surrounding Hawthorne House and her legacy, each growing in strength and understanding of themselves. Such a lot of characters to love! The themes of grief, not belonging to a family, and feeling unloved by parents, are managed sensitively by Barnes and bring depth to the story.

And of course, the readers who have been following Avery’s love life will enjoy the growth of her relationships, and those who have been asking themselves what they would do with billions of dollars, will follow the theme of the power of the very rich and how they manipulate money markets and adversaries.

This has been an engrossing series, well worth reading and recommending and The final gambit is a thrilling conclusion. Fans of other books like The Westing game by Ellen Raskin and One of Us is Lying by Karen McManus and We were liars by E. Lockhart will be sure to enjoy the series.

Themes: Riddles, Chess, Power, Inheritance, Romance.

Pat Pledger