Review: With Malice

Source: Goodreads

Title: With Malice
Author: Eileen Cook
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers

My Rating:

It was the perfect trip…until it wasn’t.

Eighteen-year-old Jill Charron wakes up in a hospital room, leg in a cast, stitches in her face and a big blank canvas where the last six weeks should be. She discovers she was involved in a fatal car accident while on a school trip in Italy. A trip she doesn’t even remember taking. She was jetted home by her affluent father in order to receive quality care. Care that includes a lawyer. And a press team. Because maybe the accident…wasn’t an accident.

As the accident makes national headlines, Jill finds herself at the center of a murder investigation. It doesn’t help that the media is portraying her as a sociopath who killed her bubbly best friend, Simone, in a jealous rage. With the evidence mounting against her, there’s only one thing Jill knows for sure: She would never hurt Simone. But what really happened? Questioning who she can trust and what she’s capable of, Jill desperately tries to piece together the events of the past six weeks before she loses her thin hold on her once-perfect life.

Right after I finished this book the first thing that crossed my mind was: OH NO SHE DIDN'T! This author gave me what I was needing in a mystery/thriller book. Geez.

The plot was really interesting, young girl wakes up and doesn't have any memory from the past month even though there was an accident where her best friend died and everyone is blaming her... Count me in.

Eileen Cook wrote beautifuly not only in a normal narrative but also with excerpts from tv shows, blogs, Facebook comments and turist guides. I loved it.
The author is able to portray what the media can do: create a whole new reality based on a couple of comments, photos, you name it. It doesn't matter what the truth is, what matters is what people believe.

What was really fun about With Malice was the fact that Jill, the main character, knew as much as I did through the whole novel. She didn't remember anything from the accident and the people who were trying to help her kept making decisions without consulting her. Even as she starts to remember some things you never really know for sure if they are real memories or not, since her therapist tells her that she is very susceptible to false memories which she could create based on something people would tell her.
With all this, if you have the time, you will not want to stop reading this book. The pages will fly by in no time.

Let's talk characters:

Jill: You get to connect with her mostly because of how susceptible she is. Everyone is against her and people have already declared her guilty based on how the media depicts her. She is sweet and hard working, mostly lonely because of what happened. But she still hit a soft spot of mine. She used to be the typical "regular looking girl who happens to be really smart who has a best friend who is social, gorgeous and a cheerleader".

Simone: The media depicts her as a saint, a puritan who would never do anything wrong. But is she really that girl? Through how Jill thinks of Simone you get to like her and they seem to have a really good relationship.

Anna: I absolutely loved her! She was such a good friend and she never failed to bring Jill down to reality.

Evan: Annoying has hell, but I guess he needed to be that way right? I mean he's a lawyer.

Jill's Parents: Her mom was a very sweet person and only wanted to see Jill ok, her dad on the other hand just wanted the crime to go away no matter what it took. He's a terrible parent.

All in all I really liked this book. It was intriguing and fast paced enough for this particular plot. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to read a cool YA mystery/thriller.

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