So were you glad, deep down? Were you glad to be rid of her? Your perfect sister? Were you secretly glad when she was killed?
Following a horrific tragedy that leaves her once perfect family devastated, Katherine Patterson moves to a new city, starts at a new school, and looks forward to a new life of quiet anonymity.
But when Katherine meets the gregarious and beautiful Alice Parrie her resolution to live a solitary life becomes difficult. Katherine is unable to resist the flattering attention that Alice pays her and is so charmed by Alice's contagious enthusiasm that the two girls soon become firm friends. Alice's joie de vivre is transformative; it helps Katherine forget her painful past and slowly, tentatively, Katherine allows herself to start enjoying life again.
But being friends with Alice is complicated - and as Katherine gets to know her better she discovers that although Alice can be charming and generous she can also be selfish and egocentric. Sometimes, even, Alice is cruel.
And when Katherine starts to wonder if Alice is really the kind of person she wants as a friend, she discovers something else about Alice - she doesn't like being cast off.
Shocking and utterly absorbing, Rebecca James' strong narrative will grip readers from the very first page. Beautiful Malice has become a publishing phenomenon, sparking numerous auctions worldwide, selling to 27 countries, and launching a previously unknown writer into the centre of the international book market.
About the Author
Rebecca James was born in Sydney in 1970. She grew up in numerous different places throughout Australia - including Bourke, Sydney, Wellington and Bathurst. Rebecca has worked as a waitress, a kitchen designer, an English teacher in both Indonesia and Japan, a barmaid, and (most memorably) a mini-cab telephone-operator in London. Rebecca lives in Australia with her partner and their four sons.
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Comments about Beautiful Malice:
Seventeen-year-old Katherine Patterson was quietly absorbed in her school work, happy to be by herself. She wanted no-one, needed no-one, so when the vivacious and friendly Alice bounced over to her, she was shocked with the invitation for Alice's 18th birthday party in a few days. Katherine had only been at Drummond High for a short while, having moved from Melbourne to Sydney to try to forget her past. She thought if she told no-one it would go away. She would keep the past a secret forever, never telling a soul.
When Alice wouldn't take no for an answer, Katherine found herself caught up in the excitement of preparing for the party. She thought that just this once she would have a good time; her life would return to its mundane existence soon enough. She was living with her Aunt Vivian and with her travelling for her work, Katherine found herself on her own most of the time. She enjoyed the solitude; but suddenly, and against her own silent advice, she found a friend in Alice.
Gradually drawn into Alice's life like a magnet, Katherine found herself having fun; fun wasn't something she thought she would ever have again. And when she met Alice's on-again, off-again boyfriend Robbie, the three of them became best friends. But Alice was a moody, changeable person; bright, sparkly and flirty one minute, cruel and vindictive the next. Poor Robbie didn't know where he stood with her.
As time moved forward, secrets were unleashed. Dark and sinister, secrets from the past which threatened to undo the partial peace Katherine told herself she had found. For it seemed the many secrets from the past were set to collide with the present day, with disastrous consequences.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Beautiful Malice is the first I've read by Rebecca James, sister to Wendy James whose writing I enjoy. This was a dark and intense tale with some extreme twists – the final twist I certainly didn't see coming. It's classed as YA, because of Katherine and Alice's age I expect, but it most definitely can be read and enjoyed by everyone. Highly recommended.
Number Of Pages: 353
Published: 1st July 2010
Publisher: Faber and Faber
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.8 x 12.6 x 2.7
Weight (kg): 0.298