Theme and setup recommendation please

Hi,

I want to build two new high traffic blogs from scratch.
Mostly us audience,
Only Adsense for the beginning, which makes the site already slow. audience so it needs to look neat and trustable.

I have a dev who is proficient but not super great at WordPress. To have the best setup for this what should i get ?

Probably dedicated server ? Which plugins and which theme do you recommen? I can invest some money.

 

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