I discovered Jessica Dotta’s Price of Privilege series almost reluctantly. Because it was on the list for Tyndale’s Summer Reading Program and I could check it out from the library, I gave it a chance. Sometimes I yawn at another offering set in 19th Century England, but I’m so glad I picked up this series. (You can read my reviews of books 1 and 2, Born of Persuasion and Mark of Distinction, on Goodreads.)
The finale in the series, Price of Privilege, is a stunning and surprising conclusion. It also might be my favorite of the three books. (Disclaimer: I received a free e-copy of the book through the Tyndale Blog Network in exchange for my review.)
Without giving too much away for anyone who hasn’t read the first two books in the series, I’ll say this: I want good things for Julia, the lead character, who is telling these stories in the first person. Her life has been marred by circumstances out of her control (and some in her control), and I just want things to work out for her. A friend who read the first book in this series had almost no sympathy for her character, so I’m not sure why I do, but I feel sorry for her. But sorry for her in the kind of way that I’m pulling for her.
I can say that almost nothing that happens in Julia’s life makes me feel good or happy. And this is not your light-hearted happily ever after kind of story, but it has a redemptive storyline that drew me into it. One of the highlights is a character named Jameson who adds a sprinkling of humor through some of the toughest scenes. His character is what made this book my favorite.
Now that I’ve finished the series, I’m a bit sad to leave these characters behind even though there were disturbing events in their lives. I felt their sufferings and sorrows, and what I’ve loved about Dotta’s writing is the kind of dark moodiness she’s able to convey on the page. Definitely reminiscent of the Bronte sisters’ works, Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights.
If you’re looking for something different in the historical genre, love England and don’t mind a story with some darkness to it, then I’d whole-heartedly recommend Dotta’s series.
I wish I could say more about this particular story without giving away other details. This is another series I’d love to read again, straight through, to get a better handle on the turns of events, too.