With Malice by Eileen Cook
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
Synopsis: 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.
The cover image makes me want to jump on a plane and go to Italy.
With Malice failed as an ‘edge-of-your-seat-thriller’ for me. It wasn’t as mysterious as it claims to be which is why I gave it three stars. 80% of the book is Jill trying to remember what happened on her trip to Italy.
I did like the police reports, Justice for Simone blog articles, people’s comments, interviews, and other random pieces that helped with the investigation that the author included in between Jill’s POV chapters. It made the story feel more real. They were interesting to read.
I really disliked the Justice for Simone blog and everyone who’s commenting they’re on Simone’s side. Some of these people don’t even know Jill or Simone!
I don’t know why the Italian police are getting involved to put Jill in jail. They don’t even know Simone. I’m guessing they’re trying to make Americans look bad.
In the end, I think Jill meant to kill Simone in the car crash. Simone had something to sabotage her which Jill didn’t want anyone to know about. It would’ve been easier to get rid of Simone.
Jill wouldn’t know if her dream, in chapter 31, was accurate since her brain was still recovering from the crash. She couldn’t feel guilty.