Saturday, January 31, 2009


Godbersen, Anna. Envy: A Luxe Novel. The Luxe. New York: HarperCollins, 2009.
[Book cover credit:]

SPOILER ALERT: It is impossible to talk about Envy, let alone give a summary and review, without giving away the end of Rumors. If you haven't finished it yet, enjoy the picture of the cover of Envy, but don't read below it.

In Envy we find out what has become of our favorite characters from The Luxe and Rumors. There are complications as Henry cannot put aside is love of Diana which is definitely causing problems in his marriage, Elizabeth can no longer hide at home to mourn Will, Carolina continues to live the life of an heiress, and Penelope (of course) tries to bend them all to her will. On top of that, they all decide to vacation together in Florida, with about 10 more of their closest friends. How will this all come together for our characters? You must know by now that you will have to wait for the next installment to find out.

Diana, Elizabeth, Penelope and Carolina experience a lot in this latest installment of The Luxe: wealth, dresses, balls, money-grubbing, ambition, destination-vacations, illicit love, more dresses, intrigue, rumors, gossip, and the one thing they won't admit that they have in common, Envy.

Though Godbersen has always shown the consequences of their actions as they were seen in the gossip columns and parlors of 19th century New York, real-life consequences are beginning to surface. Our girls grow a bit older and wiser in Envy, and you can be sure that their days of thoughtless sex, money-grubbing and betrayal are mostly behind them. Elizabeth, Penelope, Diana and Carolina all face very hard decisions and situations in Envy that move beyond the "what will people say" concerns they have faced in the past. The young men of The Luxe are becoming more aware of the world outside of New York and taking readers with them. This series is clearly growing up and growing better. I know that I, like all of Godbersen's other readers, am already counting down the days until Splendor, book four, is published.

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