Devil's Cut (The Bourbon Kings, #3) by J.R. Ward
Publisher: Ballantine
Publication Date: August 1st 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Drama, Romance
Pages: 418
Format: audio
Source: purchased

In #1 New York Times bestselling author J. R. Ward’s thrilling finale of the Bourbon Kings series, the Bradford family dynasty teeters on the edge of collapse after the murder of their patriarch—and a shocking arrest.

At first, the death of William Baldwine, the head of the Bradford family, was ruled a suicide. But then his eldest son and sworn enemy, Edward, came forward and confessed to what was, in fact, a murder. Now in police custody, Edward mourns not the disintegration of his family or his loss of freedom . . . but the woman he left behind. His love, Sutton Smythe, is the only person he has ever truly cared about, but as she is the CEO of the Bradford Bourbon Company’s biggest competitor, any relationship between them is impossible. And then there’s the reality of the jail time that Edward is facing.

Lane Baldwine was supposed to remain in his role of playboy, forever in his big brother Edward’s shadow. Instead he has become the new head of the family and the company. Convinced that Edward is covering for someone else, Lane and his true love, Lizzie King, go on the trail of a killer—only to discover a secret that is as devastating as it is game-changing.

As Lane rushes to discover the truth, and Sutton finds herself irresistibly drawn to Edward in spite of his circumstances, the lives of everyone at Easterly will never be the same again. For some, this is good; for others, it could be a tragedy beyond imagining. Only one thing’s for certain: Love survives all things. Even murder.

This is exactly what I wanted…the ending that made my heart happy even though I’m so sad to see this story come to a close.  I waited a long time to begin this book because I wanted to have time to savor the story and enjoy every word.  And I’m so glad I did.  I also chose to listen to it instead of reading (something I don’t do often) because I had listened to the second book, The Angel’s Share, and loved it.  Once again, thanks to the awesome narrator, and the amazing world-building of Ms. Ward, I found myself fully engrossed by this story – the intrigue, the lies and deception, the family drama, and the romance…I couldn’t get enough.

The story line takes us deep into the lives of the Baldwine family.  As they continue to deal with the repercussions of their father’s deception, they’re thrown together to save their company and their future.  The interactions between the siblings and their desire to move forward from tragedy, even in the face of a dark future, kept the story moving quickly.  I really enjoyed the push and pull between the brothers and, in the end, their commitment to each other.  However, if you know me at all (and I think you do), it was the romance that had me transfixed.  Lane and Lizzie, Edward and Sutton, Gin and Samuel T….I love them all.  Each and every chapter added a piece to the puzzle and gave me the opportunity to immerse myself in a different love story.  Unlike other books, where I have to struggle through some parts just to get back to the characters I love, this book provided a piece of the storyline I was desperate to know more about in every single chapter.

In truth, this book, as the ones before it, is a series of stories strung together by one main plot which makes it more than just a romance.  However, ultimately, I would love to get a whole book about any one of these couples!  This series will definitely be one of my all time favorites…one I will likely read again and again.  I can’t wait to see  what Ms. Ward has in store for us next and I can only hope she provides us with another amazing family drama like this one.  I, for one, will be first in line to read it!

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