When a letter from her uncle Henrik arrives on Bryn Roth’s eighteenth birthday, summoning her back to Bastian, Bryn is eager to prove herself and finally take her place in her long-lost family.
Henrik has plans for Bryn, but she must win everyone’s trust if she wants to hold any power in the delicate architecture of the family. It doesn’t take long for her to see that the Roths are entangled in shadows. Despite their growing influence in upscale Bastian, their hands are still in the kind of dirty business that got Bryn’s parents killed years ago. With a forbidden romance to contend with and dangerous work ahead, the cost of being accepted into the Roths may be more than Bryn can pay.
Adrienne Young has done it again and created a story that pulled me in so utterly and completely. I had only recently finished Namesake so the world of Bastian and the Roth family were still really fresh in my mind and it was so easy to immerse myself back into it all.
Honestly I am in love with Bryn, what an absolutely amazing character. Her growth in this book is wonderful to read as she goes from debutant to dangerous. Her quick thinking alongside of her uncanny ability to fall into the character she needs to be, had me holding my breath on a few occasions. She is the perfect combination of nature and nurture with her time with her Aunt giving her an edge above the others. The Roths as a family had a peaky blinders feel to them, which I am all for and there are certainly enough stories for all of them, I mean Murrow is just screaming out for a book of his own!
Much of the story takes place in the Roth family home, which thankfully never felt overused. In fact the almost stifling feel of the house and the routine added to the sense that all those in there were trapped in the family business. The creaking floors and opened doors making secret keeping an impossibility. I loved how the rest of Bastian felt full of diversity, rounding every corner felt like a different place with streets full of secrets and alley’s of dark deals alongside the upmarket tea houses.
The plot is fast moving and packs plenty into its pages, there are lots of secrets and then secrets within secrets that have to be kept track of. The focus is kept clear though even with many outlying players and locations and this really makes the story work as a standalone.
The finale was played like a fine game of chess and was such a joy to read, although it felt over all too quickly for me. I know that this is a standalone but I could read Bryn’s story over and over and I hope that it may not be the last we read about her.
Thank you to Titan books for sending me a copy for review.