Number one, top five, nope, I’ll admit when I first SAW this book, I didn’t think much of it, the first rule when it comes to books, never judge a book by its cover, or I have a thing about feet, whatever I walked on by honestly. I read “About The Book” and it still didn’t hook me but since I’ve joined a Dark Erotica reading group I haven’t missed a book and even though I told them this doesn’t float my boat and find my remote… yeah, I was wrong about “Legacy of Succession” by Anna Edwards, it’s incredible.

The first thing and kind of spooky on a personal level is the fact that while I thought this book up and down, I literally wrote something somewhat close to this, young women, playing a game, death or slavery to the losers, all in the name of a man’s love, a common theme perhaps. Stop me if you’ve heard this one, The Honorable Victoria Hamilton has a chance at, well you can’t say riches she’s always known privilege, and you can’t utter freedom either because she’s perpetually under some man’s thumb, so pretty much the game is all there is. Of course, the prize is the soon to be Duke of Oakfield, Nicholas who is the sad little rich boy as much as she’s the tragic little wealthy girl, except he’s had plenty of sex and Victoria is a virgin.

Legacy of Succession isn’t so much a sex-filled romp as it is a throwback to the days when women were property, and their fathers did whatever they wished to do to them for, money, power, and to strengthen alliances but in our age. I’ve never cared to understand much on feminism but yes what’s happening to these women is wrong, and the current Duke of Oakfield is all well, and good about this little secret society of fathers selling their daughters into bondage Nicholas has other ideas. A bit and “I Just Can’t Wait To Be King” with the sad girl beginning to fall in love with the first man she ever sees, the three L’s Lust, Love, and Life, now how can she and Nicholas get away with that, well you have to read the book to find out.

Don’t expect any great drifting from the usual formula but there are quite a few twists, and as they say these days, OMG moments throughout; near the end, you will be on the edge of your seat to see how it all unravels. The book teases quite a bit and tries to ratchet up the dirty language to disguise the fact that other than oral satisfaction, you won’t be seeing any sex until later in the title, but it happens.

Could I fall in love with a girl like Victoria, did I fall in love, I liked her I can’t deny that but she was a bit clueless, daddy’s little girl but all but one of the daughters didn’t have daddy issues early on. As for Nicholas, sorry to say nothing especially remarkable, you’ve seen one bad boy with a good heart, you’ve seen them all, but indeed that is one of the twists in the title. His motive for doing what he does throughout.

In case you didn’t know Victoria has only known isolation for her entire life, her father either thinking she can’t control herself, she’s incredibly beautiful or that men are all like him, looking to tear her apart at a moment’s notice. So Victoria’s initial foolish actions can be forgiven, we are still in that scenario of if I was the only boy in the world and you were the only girl, and in walks, Nicholas and all bets are off. She has a fiery never say die attitude, and you never lose faith in her. However, it’s the fact that it all appears too easy for her to give herself up to Nicholas like wow.

Nicholas is the typical party boy, but as he’s turning thirty, he has to grow up and be the man or rather the monster his father wants him to be, and that means terrorizing young women until the soon to be new Duke decides on one that he would like to marry. If it was the wealth and the privilege guiding him that would be one thing but that’s one of the big twists with this story, there is a man he’s trying to please but SPOILER ALERT, it’s his brother William, everything he does to help his brother. That if anything is new, but then we throw Victoria into the mix and thus is his confliction, loyalty to his brother over love for his girl, sounds like my dog and me when a girl is here I’m just saying.

Nicholas’s father is the main antagonist, and with all the fathers in this, the worst happens to torture a son, not a daughter, and he has so many tricks up his sleeve right to the end, nearly as tenacious as his son himself. Two of the other daughters Amelia and Elizabeth, I felt for one more than the other, and they were both more prepared for their future than Victoria, and Elizabeth’s interactions with Nicholas yet one more snake. I find myself relating more to William and how he was suffering from what his father was doing, but yet again I say this in so many reviews, it’s always the quiet ones right, does nobody respect silence, oh their quiet must be the most dangerous.

That’s not a dig at the author only books in general, but as for Legacy of Succession, it is a solid four stars and one title that I’m glad I didn’t sleep on because once I started reading it; looks like my reading group was right. You might want to stop right here if you’re looking to read this as let’s say, dear Victoria who has absolutely no idea at first what her life is going to become when she becomes a victim or you a fan of Legacy of Succession, I know you will.

As to why I’m giving it four stars again I will admit that the story trope of being quiet equating to madness always rubs me the wrong way, yes more of a personal grievance but one concept I find annoying as all Hell. While many stories deal with the idea of a chosen one that somehow upends the system and makes everything better, walking in on it after years and years of waiting as if no one over many years could have possibly led by the same principles and tried to fight back? The endgame is hastily hashed out, but that happens to the best writers and though this is the only book I’ve read from Anna Edwards; I would place her among some of the greats, to be honest.

Some of my favorite parts would have to be where Victoria and Nicholas first make love and don’t get your hopes up it only happens twice, and by that point, I was pretty heavily in the book, and this title is pushing me towards buying the next. The scene where Victoria endures torture with the
“Scold’s Bridle” and paraded around the members of the Society, except the downright cruelty there was something to be said about the BDSM context to it. Getting to know the society as a whole though they played little more than a background role was profound and I’m not surprised that such groups exist because they do, I believe no doubt.

If you’re looking for something that points out specific politics and not only in England where this book takes place, are willing to set feminism to the side for a bit of fun and are into famous works of art and beautiful women, well here you go, this novel entirely. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to find some less valuable artistry to copy as inspiration and hope that my writing might be worth something to hold something of The Legacy Of Literary Succession.