Ruby - Virginia Andrews

Reading Challenge Category: Just fancied reading

Official Blurb:

The first novel in the spellbinding Landry family series.
The only family Ruby Landry has ever known are her loving grandparents. Although her mother is dead and she has never met her mysterious father, Ruby is grateful for all she has, especially when her attraction for handsome Paul Tate blossoms into a wonderful love.
But Paul's wealthy parents forbid him to associate with a poor Landry, and when Ruby's grandmother dies, she is forced to seek out the father she has never known in his vast New Orleans mansion. There, in a house of lies, madness and cruel torment, a shameful deception comes to light, and Ruby must cling to her memories of Paul: for only their love can save her now.

My Thoughts:

My favourite books of all time are by this author (the Heaven (Casteel) and The Flowers in the Attic (Dollenganger) series). I haven’t read any of the other series, though, mainly as I know Virginia didn’t have any input into them as they have been written by a ghostwriter (she didn’t write even the later books in the series I love as she had sadly passed away by then). I vaguely remember starting Ruby when I was younger, but after reading it this time, I’m not sure if I finished it, as all I remember is the Bayou but nothing else.
Whenever I struggle with what to read, I return to Heaven or the FITA books, so this time I decided to start a new series to see if it captured me in the same way.
It was an excellent read and had a very similar formula to Heaven of rags to riches. However, it didn’t have quite the same intensity. Ruby is happy growing up, yes, she is poor, but she has a loving Grandmere and friends around her, and she loves where she lives. Her life didn’t appear to be that difficult. So I felt her having to seek out her father in New Orleans was just for the sake of it for there to be this stark difference from her previous life to her new one.
Pierre and Daphne very much reminded me of Tony and Jillian in the Heaven series, so I was disappointed that this book didn’t have its own unique characters. I’m intrigued to find out if Daphne goes the same route as Jillian in the later books.
I definitely felt like I was comparing the books the whole way through, which I suppose is an odd thing to do, but I really can’t stress enough how many times I’ve read Heaven, so it is ingrained in my head.
I finished this book wanting more, though, and I immediately picked up book two in the series, which is a direct continuation. So I really enjoyed it; I’m just not sure anything could live up to my all-time favourites. Had I never read them, this would have undoubtedly been a five-star read, but I just can’t quite put it in the same class, so it will be a very solid four.

by Virginia Andrews
Date Started
15th January 2023
Date Finished
19th January 2023