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Title: Beautiful Bad
Author: Annie Ward
Publisher: Park Row
Publish Date: March 5, 2019
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Goodreads Ratings: Me 4.0 / Community 3.83
In the tradition of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train comes the psychological thriller everyone is talking about, a twisted novel about a devoted wife, a loving husband, and a chilling crime that will stun even the cleverest readers.
There are two sides to every story… And every person.
Maddie and Ian’s love story began with a chance encounter at a party overseas, while she was a travel writer visiting her best friend, Jo. Now almost two decades later, married with a beautiful son, Charlie, they are living the perfect suburban life in Middle America. But when a camping accident leaves Maddie badly scarred, she begins attending writing therapy, where she gradually reveals her fears about Ian; her concerns for the safety of their young son; and the couple’s tangled and tumultuous past with Jo.
From the Balkans to England, Iraq to Manhattan, and finally to an ordinary family home in Kansas, sixteen years of love and fear, adventure and suspicion culminate in The Day of the Killing, when a frantic 911 call summons the police to the scene of a shocking crime.
Maddie and Ian appear to have a wonderful life. After a camping accident leaves Maddie disfigured, she begins going to therapy. Maddie and Ian’s past is slowly revealed, along with their current situation – the day of the killing.
Told using flashbacks, this suspenseful novel covers two decades and a variety of locations. Maddie and Ian met when they were both living in the Balkans. Maddie was working as a travel writer and Ian was a soldier working as a bodyguard. They had a brief flirtation, but as their work took them elsewhere, their relationship was complicated. In the present day story, they are married and have a son, but their relationship still has difficulties.
A complex and intriguing psychological thriller. The novel opens with a frantic 911 call, which leads to the responding officer finding a bloody scene. The story then alternates between the events of Maddie and Ian’s past and the present day investigation.
A captivating read for fans of slow-burning domestic thrillers. Compelling characters. Complicated relationships. Unreliable narrator. Murder investigation.
I received a free eARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.