01 August 2010

Beautiful Malice

by Rebecca James

Allen and Unwin. Australian, Mystery, Young Adult. Paperback rrp $24.99

Two years ago Katherine, or Katie as she was known then, was a popular, outgoing girl with a gorgeous boyfriend and a family and lifestyle she adored. Then she changed her name, moved interstate, and attended the largest school so she would not be noticed.

She has a secret she doesn’t want anyone to know about. Yet Katherine is only seventeen years old. What is she running away from and why does she want to shrink into the shadows?

The most beautiful, popular and wealthy female in her year, Alice, singles Katherine out to be her friend. With Alice’s friendship Katherine changes, the weight of the previous few years lifts as she becomes the girl she once was. But then Alice finds out the truth about Katherine and Katherine starts to see the real girl behind the fa├žade that Alice displays to the public.

Both girls have a secret. Katherine’s is shared amongst friends and family and helps her cope. When Alice’s secret is finally revealed Katherine understands too late. Tragedy continues to haunt Katherine. Friendship can kill.

Beautiful Malice is a book that sucked me in and held me tight on its psychotic grip until the last page was turned. I returned to reality with an audible gasp and a spinning head. Brilliant!


Reviewed by Barbara Brown

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