I blogged already about the first book in the series, The Luxe. Since then I have read the other three, Rumors, Envy, and Splendor. I will admit I was tempted to give up after the second book. The first two books were not terribly action packed, the historical elements were superficial, when I prefer more about the politics and NYC history, and they were not particularly well written. However, I did like the characters, especially the Holland sisters, Elizabeth and Diana. So, I kept reading. I am glad I did because the stories got better: more interesting and better written. And I really do like the descriptions of Gilded Age fashions.
Penelope continues to scheme, Diana continues to charm, Lina continues to lie, and Elizabeth just wants to be left alone with her man, but family and the call of NYC interfere. In the end each character ends up just how he/she should. No huge surprises, but I was not disturbed by the predictability either. I often have a difficult time determining if books are predictable because I am a well-read adult reading YA novels, or if the books really are too obvious. Giving these the benefit of the doubt, there were enough small surprises to make me think teens who have not read too widely in this genre would not be disappointed.
While I did enjoy the series in the long run, I am not sure I will follow up with Godberson's next series beginning with Bright Young Things. Had the characters been related to those in The Luxe series I might have given them a shot, but since they are not I will probably take a pass.