By Theodore CipollaMon. 06 May. 20243min Read

Deadly Wealth: Our Synopsis of The Inheritance Games

Check out our synopsis of "The Inheritance Games" and learn the secrets of Jennifer Lynn Barnes's thrilling Young Adult saga.
Deadly Wealth: Our Synopsis of The Inheritance Games

I recently finished reading Jennifer Lynn Barnes’s superb series, The Inheritance Games, and would love to provide a synopsis for fellow fans! 


Theodore Cipolla
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I’m an experienced B2B SaaS content writer and marketer who is passionate about researching and writing about technical and creative topics.

This summary is for any fans who might have dropped off somewhere in the series. Please be warned: There are massive spoilers for the entire "The Inheritance Games" series ahead!

The Inheritance Games Synopsis (The Inheritance Games #1)

The Inheritance Games style image with green vines and skull

  • Book Title: The Inheritance Games
  • Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes
  • Year Published: 1 September 2020
  • Goodreads Rating: 4.2/5 
  • Availability: Purchase it from Amazon

Avery, a brilliant yet struggling student, lives with her sister, Libby, and her abusive boyfriend, Drake. One day, a boy named Grayson summons Avery to attend the reading of his wealthy grandfather, Tobias Hawthorne's will. Despite never having met Tobias, Avery travels with Libby to Hawthorne House in Texas. At the will reading, Tobias shocks his family by leaving most of his $48 billion fortune and assets to Avery. His only condition is that she must live in Hawthorne House for one year without evicting any Hawthorne family members. The law firm representing Tobias helps Avery adjust, and his former bodyguard provides security.

As Avery starts school at the Hawthorne estate, a girl named Thea warns her about the tragic fate of the last girl (Emily) who lived there. Avery and Tobias's grandson, Jameson, team up to find clues in Tobias's letters and signatures, as he was known for puzzles. They find middle names leading to hidden places on the estate, revealing a hidden number sequence that matches Avery's birthday and the day of Emily's death.

This discovery strains Avery and Jameson's relationship, revealing the complex emotions surrounding Emily's tragic fate.

Meanwhile, Avery learns that Drake, aided by Grayson's mother Skye, is trying to undermine her. A series of attacks follow, including a car crash and a shooting. Despite the dangers, Avery continues solving Tobias's puzzles, discovering hidden secrets about his late son, Toby, and realizing Toby is alive.

How Did The Inheritance Games End?

To solve the final puzzle, Avery and the Hawthorne grandsons use their biometrics to unlock a secret box in the house's tunnels. They unscramble "Avery Kylie Grambs" into "A very risky gamble," which leads to personalized envelopes from Tobias. Avery's envelope contains clues that reveal she had met Tobias as a child and he had been keeping tabs on her.

A photograph reveals Toby is actually alive, living under the alias "Harry." Xander, one of the grandsons, was quietly helping orchestrate the puzzles at Tobias's request, tasked with finding Toby.

The Hawthorne Legacy Synopsis (The Inheritance Games #2)

Purple image showing crown, vines, and poison flask

  • Book Title: The Hawthorne Legacy

  • Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes

  • Year Published: 7 September 2021

  • Goodreads Rating: 4.2/5 

  • Availability: Purchase it from Amazon


The Hawthorne Legacy begins a week after the events of The Inheritance Games, with Avery Grambs and Jameson Hawthorne seeking answers about Toby Hawthorne, who is believed to have died twenty years ago. They suspect that Toby is "Harry," a homeless man Avery knows from Connecticut. The two wager on who will solve the mystery of Toby's disappearance first.

Avery, now owning a pro football team, spots her estranged father, Ricky Grambs, at one of her games. Despite her sister's encouragement, Avery distrusts his intentions.

Avery, Jameson, and Xander investigate Toby's bricked-up wing in the Hawthorne House and find clues leading them to secret messages. One of them hints at Toby's adoption, leading Avery to suspect Toby might be her biological father.

Further investigation into Tobias Hawthorne’s will reveals connections between charities and the four individuals who died on a trip with Toby. The siblings also uncover the truth about the biological fathers of Skye Hawthorne’s sons. Meanwhile, Alisa, Avery's lawyer, reconnects Avery with her best friend Max.

As Avery and Jameson delve deeper into the mystery, they discover a love triangle involving Skye, a betrayal, and the identity of Nash Hawthorne's father. However, their investigation is interrupted by various threats, prompting Avery to return to Hawthorne House for safety.

The team discovers numerical inscriptions on rings left by Tobias, leading them to a vacation home in Costa Rica. They find clues that reveal Toby is still alive and had been secretly tracked for years.

Back at Hawthorne House, Avery is captured and tied up by Sheffield Grayson, Grayson's biological father, who aims to use her to draw out Toby. Mellie, a maid at the house, reveals that her sister Eve is Toby's real daughter, not Avery. Toby agrees to care for Eve, while Avery manages to escape as Mellie kills Sheffield.

How Did The Hawthorne Legacy End?

Toby reveals to Avery that despite not being her biological father, he has always considered her his child and even named her. He then leaves, accepting his exile for the tragedy on Hawthorne Island.

In the final scene, Avery and Jameson share a kiss on a rooftop, signaling her decision to be with him.

The Final Gambit Synopsis (The Inheritance Games #3)


Red book cover showing sword, crown, and chess pieces

  • Book Title: The Final Gambit

  • Author: Jennifer Lynn Barnes

  • Year Published: 30 August 2022

  • Goodreads Rating: 4.1/5 

  • Availability: Buy it from Amazon


Avery Grambs is weeks away from her 18th birthday and inheriting Tobias Hawthorne's fortune. While Grayson Hawthorne studies at Harvard and Jameson Hawthorne explores a family villa in Tuscany, Alisa Ortega pressures Avery to place her inheritance in a trust managed by her law firm.

Jameson surprises Avery for her birthday with a series of adventures and a surprise party at Hawthorne House. The following day, Eve Shane, Toby Hawthorne's secret daughter, arrives with news that Toby has been abducted. She claims someone wants revenge for the tragic fire Toby caused on Hawthorne Island.

A mysterious envelope arrives, containing a gold disk and a puzzle hinting at vengeance. Avery and the Hawthorne brothers suspect one of three powerful families is behind Toby's kidnapping. Further clues lead them to believe Vincent Blake, a former associate of Tobias Hawthorne, might be involved.

As tensions rise, Avery, Jameson, and Grayson find additional clues that reveal a complex history involving the Hawthorne and Blake families. They deduce that Vincent Blake is likely behind the kidnapping and that Toby is his grandson.

Eve confronts Avery with a gun, admitting to helping Vincent abduct Toby in hopes of securing a share of his fortune. Avery manages to escape and ultimately faces off against Vincent in a high-stakes chess match, which she wins. This victory allows her to free Toby and Grayson.

How Did The Final Gambit End?

Avery arranges for the discovery of Liam Blake's remains at Hawthorne House, implicating Tobias to protect Mallory. Avery confronts Vincent Blake, offering a chess challenge that will determine Toby and Grayson's fate. Winning the match, she secures their freedom and ensures Vincent will no longer threaten her.

A year later, Avery donates most of her inheritance to charity while retaining ownership of Hawthorne House. She announces a new annual competition, offering a substantial prize, with the final words: "The game starts right now."

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