Thursday, June 23, 2016

With Malice, by Eileen Cook

Jill wakes up in the hospital suffering from a broken leg and severe head trauma that's caused her to completely forget the past six weeks of her life. She doesn't remember her trip to Italy or the accident that caused her injuries and killed her best friend, Simone. She soon learns that the accident has made national headlines and that there is a investigation into what really happened (however, Simone's family and most everyone else thinks Jill is to blame). Some sources say it wasn't even an accident, but murder.

News reports, police interviews, blog posts, and communications between the girls and their families/friends before and after the "accident" attempt to piece together the story, but only Jill knows the whole truth of what really happened. 

And Jill can't remember any of it.

Or can she?

When I first heard about Eileen Cook's novel With Malice, it was billed as being a mystery worthy of We Were Liars (E. Lockhart), a book I couldn't put down and raved about to just about anyone who would listen. Needless to say, I was super excited to read it.

By now, I should know better than to listen to hype and comparisons to favorite books. About the only thing the two books shared was a wealthy main character with amnesia. With Malace held none of the magic and mystery and romance of We Were Liars. Instead, there was just lots and lots of catty mean girl drama with mystery and thriller elements mixed in for flavor (although by the end, I was so fed up with all the Drama I could have cared less what happened to the characters). The way Jill finally regains her memory feels almost too almost convenient, and ending is too neatly wrapped-up.

If you're looking for a good mystery, there are better options. --AJB

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