The Luxe Series (books 1-3) by Anna Godbersen

Since it was described as Gossip Girl meets Edith Wharton, I wasn't sure I'd like it. I mean, I love Gilded Age New York, and I get tons of pleasure watching events and relationships unravel and snowball simultaneously before the Upper East Side crew. And throwing both together sounded like a cool idea. But I knew it'd be all in execution.

First things first: the cover art had me at hello! I mean, sure, the dresses are of questionable authenticity for the era, but the moment I saw The Luxe, I had to touch it. I wanted to hold it. And I wanted to take it home with me. And I did! I do love me some couture, after all.

When I cracked it open and started to read, I fell more deeply for the books. The chapters start off with bits of gossip, newspaper clippings, and notes, and the narrative draws the reader into the time with a cadence indicative of the period. Godbersen transitions between characters well, too -- you know exactly who's talking, what they're feeling, and what their motivations are. The suspense and amps up with each book, the antagonists become more clear-cut and dangerous, and the romantic pull increases just as it should. At the end of each book I've even cried, OH NO!, and run to my husband to tell him what happened...and even he approves of the plot twists.

I'm very much looking forward to Splendor, which releases in late October!