When I read the first book in this series, Chloe, I was hopeful that although the book moved quickly and seemed a tad bit shallow, that overall the series would be enjoyable. I was wrong. Chloe was good, Bette was better, but then with Leigh Cote's writing seemed to take a turn for the worse, and Carly only reiterated that sentiment. I was so excited for an impactful, in depth series about four generations of American women, and what I ended up reading was a hastily-written and shallow series filled with unrealistic characters and false-feeling relationships. I understand that this is a novel, and thus by definition it will have some outlandish plot twists and character developments - but I would at least expect such things to be written in a believable way, with some depth to them. This entire book felt so false and cheesy, that I could hardly bear to finish it.
The author is trying to pass this series off as "Christian" novels, and while there are a few (and I stress "few") "Christian" references, they are so shallow, awkwardly tossed in, and completely unexplained, that there is no point in the references even being in the novel at all. Then, in Carly the main character joins the army. This is a sect of society that is fairly well-known for being rough and rugged, and yet the author has soldiers and drill sergeants saying the most unbelievably docile things, that there is NO WAY anyone could take them seriously. I felt like I was reading a book written for a pre-teen child.
I was highly disappointed in this "grand finale" to the Ivy Manor series, and I will not be reading any other books by this author.
*** For some truly good, in-depth, and entertaining reading, try Liz Curtis Higgs, Lyn Austin, Francine Rivers, or Cecelia Ahern ***