Thursday, May 22, 2014

Book Review: The Heiresses by Sara Shepard


Pages: 320
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: May 20, 2014
Source: Publisher for review
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "The series follows one of the most prestigious and wealthy families on the Upper East Side who have built their entire fortune on the business of diamonds. Due to a clause the grandfather placed in his will, only his granddaughters are set to inherit his massive fortune…these are the heiresses. After the death of their cousin, the remaining heiresses try to figure out if the family curse is real or not, and if not, who killed their cousin, and more importantly, which one of them is next on the hit list?"
The Saybrook family is a well known wealthy family that owns a diamond empire; however, the media likes to refer to their "bad luck" as the Saybrook Curse.  The patriarch of the Saybrook family has written his will so only the granddaughters will inherit.  So, the novel focuses on Aster, who loves to party and basically spends all of her free time being a socialite.  Her sister, Corinne, who is the opposite of Aster. She works in her family business and is engaged to the seemingly perfect Dixon, heir to an oil company.  Their cousin, Poppy, is also "perfect" and is president of the family company.  Her husband, James, adores her and they have two young girls.  Then there's Rowan, the lawyer for her family; she still can't get over her first love (who happens to be Poppy's husband!).  And lastly, there's Natasha, who disinherited herself and is living a "normal" life as a yoga instructor.  Everyone in the Saybrook family is preparing for Corinne's upcoming nuptials, but things come to a halt, when Poppy has "committed suicide."  Or did she? Is it the family curse or is someone actually out to get the Saybrook heiresses? Sara Shepard, the creator of Pretty Little Liars, gives us a deliciously entertaining adult read with The Heiresses

When I first opened up The Heiresses, I was immediately turned off by the amount of characters that Shepard introduced readers to within the first few pages. I couldn't keep track of the cast of characters….who is a cousin, who is sister, who is a family friend…it might help if there was some sort of family tree in the beginning of the book. I am not kidding.  Once I got the Saybrook family sorted out, I was still unsure. How could I relate to these spoiled women? But then something happened.  I was sucked in. I was completely addicted. The Saybrooks sort of reminded me of a family from Gossip Girl meets the Kennedys.

Each heiress brought something interesting and fun to the table.  What is so delicious about The Heiresses are the secrets that each character holds within. I shouldn't be surprised since Shepard wrote Pretty Little Liars, which demonstrates her ability to be a master storyteller and expert secret keeper.  Slowly secrets about each girl were unveiled and I was definitely invested. 

The murder mystery surrounding Poppy also hooked me in.  I was dying to know who did it or did she really commit suicide? Everyone thought she had the perfect life, but then there were bits of information coming up that demonstrated otherwise.  For example, Poppy was taking private phone calls at work and private meetings that she didn't share with her family, her husband, or her assistant.  It doesn't help that her husband, James, was sure that she was having an affair, but what if there was something more going on in The Heiresses

The Heiresses reminded me a bit of an adult Gossip Girl, which if you know me, you know is a compliment. I loved that the gossip website, "The Blessed and the Cursed" followed the Saybrook women around writing about their every move, both good and bad.  The women couldn't figure out who was in charge of the website, but unfortunately whomever was contributing knew a lot about the women and even had one woman's day planner.  

The Heiresses took me by surprise. I was completely hooked and I am definitely going to read the next book in the series. This would be a great book to bring along on vacation or to accompany you poolside with a cocktail. It's fluffy, it's all about secrets, and it's perfect summertime fun.  




13 comments:

  1. Sara Shepard is kind of known for offering up a few too many characters too fast. And yet, she always seems to make it work...it's insane! I'm glad to hear this one ended up working for you, Christina. It sounds like the perfect summertime read for me!

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    1. Oh, really? It's my first book by Shepard (although I met her a few years ago and she's awesome!), but you are right…she definitely made it work. Yes, it's the PERFECT summertime read. Let me know your thoughts if you read it! Thanks for visiting, Melissa!

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  2. The sheer volume of characters introduced in the beginning does sound tricky Christina, I always struggle when we're suddenly faced with a huge number of people I have to try and keep straight, but I'm glad that once you got them all sorted out the story reached out and grabbed you. Love it when that happens:)

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    1. Yes, Shepard totally proved to me that I could handle ALL the characters. I still want a family tree though. haha. I really enjoyed this one. Thanks for checking out my review, Jenny!

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  3. I wasn't a fan of PLY, so when I first saw this book, I didn't even try to read the synopsis. The number of characters seems daunting, yes, but I'm used to that kind of thing in adult books. I really want to read this now, knowing that there's more to it than just a novel about the privileged few.

    Great review, Christina. :)

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    1. Yes, it has its fluffy moments, but is more than just about a privileged family…there are lots of secrets, drama, and a murder mystery. It was a lot of fun! Thanks for visiting!

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  4. I'm glad to see you enjoyed this one. I am a huge fan of Sara Shepard's Pretty Little Liars series and the fact that you said this reminded you of an adult version of Gossip Girl only made me more excited. Great review!

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    1. Thanks, Katie! I love me some Gossip Girl as well, so I enjoyed that vibe of the book. I hope you get to read it soon, especially since you are a PLL fan. Thanks for dropping by!

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  5. I'm a huge fan of Gossip Girl and Sara Shepard so I'm on board with this book. I'm glad to hear you were hooked and not just left confused after so many characters were flung at you. Thanks for the great review!

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    1. Thanks, Brittany! If you are a fan of PLL and Shepard's writing style, I think you'll like this one. I hope you get to read it soon! Thanks for visiting!

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  6. Sounds kind of good. I haven't tried any of her fiction for adults but this almost sounds like her fiction for teens.

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    1. I haven't read any of her teen fiction, but I have a few copies sitting on my shelf. I have watched a few episodes of PLL and there are some similarities between that and this book. It's a really fun read though….thanks for visiting, Christina!

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  7. Hey😊
    I just finished reading the book and I can't understand the epilogue :/ pleasr help!

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