Beautiful Malice

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Beautiful Malice

Katherine Patterson has changed her name, moved into the city to live with her aunt, and enrolled into a different school where no one will recognize who she is. She was once an energetic, fun loving, and popular girl in her previous life; now she is a quiet, friendless wallflower and she couldn’t be more relieved by that fact. The less noticed she is, the more likely it is that no one will recognize her from all the countless articles written about her in the newspapers about that horrible night.

Alice is the last person Katherine ever thought to become friends with. She is charming, outlandishly extroverted, and has a magnetic personality that people just cannot stay away from. She is also the most popular girl and attracts attention every where she goes. For whatever reasons unbeknownst to Katherine, Alice favors her and puts forth great effort in becoming the closest friends with Katherine. But Alice has secrets of her own, and they are dark with malicious intent.

As to my knowledge, this is the first published book of Rebecca James. For being a debut novel, I think it was great and her writing style is off to a good start. The story kept my interest even though I felt the foreshadowing made the “deep dark secrets” quite obvious. It did not take me long to piece together how the story would turn out, so the ending was not surprising to me. Though this story was supposed to be suspenseful, I was not held in suspense. Rather I would liken it to a soft mystery.

I appreciated the flow of the book and great character development. I think Ms. James is off to a great start and I am interested in what her future books will reveal.

Book Blurb for Beautiful Malice

An international sensation that The Wall Street Journal called a “publishing phenomenon,” this layered, poignant, and chilling novel of psychological suspense is the year’s most stunning American fiction debut. From its wrenching opening to its shocking climax, Beautiful Malice unfolds a haunting story in which people, motives, and circumstances are never what they seem.
Who is Katherine Patterson? It is a question she hopes no one can answer. To erase her past, Katherine has moved to a new city, enrolled in a new school, and even changed her name. She’s done the next best thing to disappearing altogether. Now, wary and alone, she seeks nothing more than anonymity. What she finds instead is the last thing she expected: a friend.
Even more unlikely, Katherine’s new friend is the most popular and magnetic girl in school. Extroverted, gorgeous, flirtatious, and unpredictable, she is everything that Katherine is not and doesn’t want to be: the center of attention. Yet Alice’s enthusiasm is infectious, her candor sometimes unsettling, and Katherine, in spite of her guarded caution, finds herself drawn into Alice’s private circle. 
But Alice has secrets, too—darker than anyone can begin to imagine. And when she lets her guard down at last, Katherine discovers the darkest of them all. For there will be no escaping the past for Katherine Patterson—only a descent into a trap far more sinister . . . and infinitely more seductive.

Night Owl Reviews Aug, 2010 3.75