Envy by Anna Godbersen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
(Source: I own a copy of this book.)
This is the third book in the ‘Luxe’ series.
Warning: Unavoidable spoilers for the previous two books!
This books begins two months after ‘Rumors’ ended, and Elizabeth Holland is in secret mourning for her husband Will who was killed by men who thought they were rescuing Elizabeth in ‘Rumors’. Obviously she blames herself for his death, and has not been seen in society.
Diana is also secretly mourning the loss of Henry to Penelope, who blackmailed Henry into marrying her by threatening to ruin Diana’s reputation with the revelation that Diana and Henry slept together. Henry has continued to write to Diana to try to explain why he had to marry Penelope but she has been burning his letters.
Penelope and Henry are unhappily married. Henry refuses to sleep with his wife, much to her disbelief, and Penelope continues her scheming to try and get her own way.
This instalment sees the group heading to Florida for Henry’s fishing trip that Penelope insists that she and several others are a part of, and this time Penelope employs her brother Greyson to try and defile Diana, hoping to sway Henry’s interest back to her instead, although nothing seems to be working.
I loved this book, I’ve read the first two in the series – ‘The Luxe’, and ‘Rumors’ previously, and then re-read them prior to starting Envy, but this is the first time I had read Envy.
Once again there is tension throughout the whole book as you wonder who will end up with whom, and what Penelope’s next scheme will be.
Poor Elizabeth once again finds herself to be a target whilst she secretly grieves, and has other problems that just leave her even more bereft. Once again I can’t help but feel for her for both the way her life has turned out, and the difficult choices that she has had to make.
Henry is disgusted by Penelope, and hates the fact that he is married to her. He acts coolly towards her in public, and snubs her every night by refusing to sleep in the marital bed with her. His feelings for Diana are real and obvious, and you can tell how much he hates that he is living a lie with Penelope.
Diana is heartbroken over Henry, but finally begins to see a light at the end of the tunnel when Henry tells her that he still loves her and that he will leave Penelope for her. Seeing the two of them together, followed by a shock announcement from Penelope breaks her heart all over again though, and drives her to do something she is later ashamed of.
Penelope as ever continues her scheming throughout the entire book, with not a care as to who she hurts as long as she gets what she wants, and Henry and Diana are unable to be together. Penelope is spiteful, whilst still having a vulnerable side that we occasionally catch a glimpse of, which allows us to see just how desperate she is to get her happily ever after.
This book really is addictive and will quickly have you hooked, I found myself awake at 4am desperately wanting to read this book, and I really can’t wait to see how it all ends in ‘Splendor’.
I really do hope that Diana and Henry get to be together, and that Elizabeth can also find happiness.
9 out of 10.
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