Book Review

Book Review: Beautiful Bad ~ Annie Ward

I was provided an ARC of Beautiful Bad by Annie Ward, courtesy of NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Wow. My mind is spinning after this one.



Release Date: March 19, 2019

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Official Blurb (courtesy of NetGalley)

A devoted wife, a loving husband and a chilling murder that no one saw coming.

Things that make me scared: When Charlie cries. Hospitals and lakes. When Ian drinks vodka in the basement. ISIS. When Ian gets angry… That something is really, really wrong with me.

Maddie and Ian’s love story began with a chance encounter at a party overseas; he was serving in the British army and 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’s PTSD; her concerns for the safety of their young son, Charlie; 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.

My Thoughts

Wow! Where to start. We have a young woman, Maddie, who loves to travel and to learn and speak different languages. Maddie loves her best friend. Even more than her best friend, Maddie loves Ian…or does she?

Told from three different timelines – the beginning (2001-2012), the weeks prior, and the present – and three different perspectives – Diane Varga, the first responding officer, Maddie, and Ian- the reader is treated to a murder mystery that will honestly keep them on the edge of their seats. This wasn’t the best written piece of work (I am blaming this opinion on the fact that I had an unedited ARC copy, so the formatting was WAY off), but the story is definitely one people should read. I read this in less than a day and was kept guessing about certain aspects of the story line that I just had to keep going to find out:

  1. Who was killed?
  2. Who did the killing?
  3. Was Ian really abusive?
  4. Was Maddie really as innocent and traumatized as she let on?
  5. What’s the reason behind Joanna, Maddie, and Fiona all looking similar? Plot twist?
  6. Is Fiona more involved than we think? Or is she just there for a crazy back story?

Seriously, there were so many questions going on in my mind! I watch a little too much Investigation Discovery, so I like to try to figure out the ending beforehand, and I was close but not close enough. Let’s just say, people do CRAZY things for those they love already, add in some trauma and you’ve gotten a murderer/murderess.

Conclusion and My Review

Beautiful Bad was a very twisty and intriguing story and I really enjoyed it more than I thought I would. I normally do not go for thrillers/mysteries, but this book kind of makes me want to branch out more in that direction…one day.

I give Beautiful Bad 4 stars!


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