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As Rumors opens, we are reminded of the state of things when the first novel in the series, The Luxe, concluded: Elizabeth Holland, daughter of one of New York City’s finest families and engaged to Henry Schoonmaker, successfully faked her death and joined her one-time servant and true love, Will, in California. Her sister Diana and Henry have in the meantime fallen for each other, but can meet only furtively given that Henry was only recently engaged to her sister. Penelope Hayes is just as determined as ever to secure Henry for herself, but is confused as to why he no longer responds to her advances. Carolina Broud, once a humble servant in the Holland household, has now secured a wealthy benefactor and inserts herself into high society by selling information about her former employers.
I enjoyed this sequel just as much as The Luxe, though I’m not convinced there is anything special about Henry (other than his wealth). He comes across as kind of slow and dull. Although Penelope is depicted as the villain in this series, she too is disappointingly one-dimensional. That said, it’s still most definitely a page-turner. I was stunned (shocked!) and heartbroken by the climax at the train station, having not seen that coming at all.
posted Jun 18, 2014 at 1:44PM
The second book in the Luxe Series. While I did prefer this one to the first novel, I found it a bit dull. It didn’t have any twists that I expect from a good book—at least, no twists that weren’t obvious. My biggest probable, however, was how the author idealized the era and the characters, without showing the true hardships of the time and instead turning it into a historical Gossip Girl. The idea was great, but the execution lacked finesse.
posted Aug 8, 2014 at 12:32PM
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Prim and proper; from old money; engaged Henry, but in love with a member of her family's staff.
Elizabeth's younger sister; reads romance novels; wants excitement in her life; having a secret affair with Henry.
Must marry Elizabeth or be disinherited.
From new money; determined to win Henry's affections; jelaous of Elizabeth.
An outsider looking in at privileged society; Elizabeth's maid; has gossip on Elizabeth that could finally bring her into high society; doesn't know if she should betray her employer and friend.