Title: With Malice
Author: Eileen Cook
Published: June 7th 2016
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Thriller
Length: 316 pages
Source: NetGalley eARC
Book Blurb (via Goodreads):
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.
I didn’t know much about this book before I started it, all I knew was that the main character had amnesia and was having to live with the consequences of something that she could no longer remember. I found it to be a fascinating premise and was really keen to see how it would all play out, I wasn’t disappointed.
Jill Charon wakes up in a hospital, unaware that she’s been in a horrible accident that has left her with amnesia. As she slowly recovers, she wants nothing more than to talk to her best friend, Simone. Simone would make things easier, better, she always had. But then things take a dark turn, Simone died in the accident and people are demanding answers. Answers that Jill can’t give because she doesn’t remember… but then she does.
I loved this book. It had such a dark undercurrent throughout the whole story that you just knew something wrong was happening. We get to see transcripts of interviews with friends and parents and it’s the usual conflicting stories – the parents of the dead child thinking the worst of the one that lived, even though it was their child that was the ‘problem’ child.
I found it fascinating to see the versions of events that other people gave, to read what the thought of the two girls. Sometimes it was vastly different from the person that I believed I was following and even I began to wonder if what people were saying about her was true. As the truth is slowly revealed, I found it to be an edge-of-my-seat read as I desperately tried to work out what had actually gone on.
The exploration of personalities, memories, and how people will say anything to get their moment in the spotlight was fascinating and I thoroughly enjoyed following along with Jill as the truth behind the accident is revealed.
With plenty of typical teen drama, mixed with first love, jealousy, lies and deceit, along with secrets that fight to stay hidden, With Malice is a deadly summer hit that will keep you glued to the pages.
About the Author
Eileen Cook spent most of her teen years wishing she were someone else or somewhere else, which is great training for a writer.
You can read more about Eileen, her books, and the things that strike her as funny atwww.eileencook.com. Eileen lives in Vancouver with her husband and two dogs and no longer wishes to be anyone or anywhere else.
*Picture and Biography from Goodreads