Beautiful Bad

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 21 Mar 2019

Member Reviews

Enjoyed it but the back n forth was sometimes confusing, the characters are well rounded and have you rooting for them one minute and despising them the next! Quite fast paced but then slow in places but in all a good read
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i can't recommend this book enough! if you want a book that is so different from many others with so many twists this is the one for you.
i had no clue about what was going to happen on the day of the murder
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In 2001 Maddie, a writer supplemented her income from writing travel books by teaching English in Bulgaria. Her best friend, Joanna, worked for a charity organisation in Macedonia, helping in the refugee camps. Ian is stationed in Macedonia along with three other members of British Personal Protection. They are responsible for the safety of the British Ambassador.

Maddie falls head over heels in love with Ian, from the very first time she meets him, but it will take years before he is able to return the love that he too felt from that first meeting. He wanted to ensure that when he did finally declare his love, he was in a financial position to provide her with stability.

Present time; The police receive a phone call. A child is screaming and a woman begging for help. When they arrive, they find a body, a very traumatised little boy and two women with wounds.

The storyline takes us from the present, the day of the killing, back to 2001, the first time Ian and Maddie meet and then follows them between 2001 through the years and weeks leading up to the murder.

Annie Ward has written a superb novel which left me shocked and horrified that a psychopath could be so scheming and cool-headed without ever letting anyone see the terrible side of their nature.

If you want to read something that is so entirely different with many twists, then I can highly recommend this novel. I honestly never for one minute suspected what was going to happen on the day of the murder.
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For the most part I found this compelling. At first, we don't know who died, how or why. As the book unfolds, we gradually learn more about an abusive marriage and a shattered friendship.

However, the ending lost me. It seemed rushed, ill thought out and cobbled together for the sake of having a shocking twist. It let down the rest of the book, which I'd really enjoyed.

So overall, just okay, although I would read more by this author.

Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC without obligation.
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Definitely an interesting story. Not sure if it was for me though. It started off good but in my opinion, was a little slow and far too much backstory in places. I did however think that the ending was really good. Four stars.
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Unbelievable. What a story. Fast paced and keeps you guessing.
Feeling sorry for the characters one minute and hating on them the next. Do you believe them. All is not what it seems. Crazy.
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I don't remember much about this book, except how twisted it was in terms of the violence and the PTSD. I thought it was interesting enough. Though it was predictable most times, Annie Ward writes well. I was surprised to note that Ward released another book several years ago, as Beautiful Bad did feel quite like a debut. Nonetheless, it's decent.
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I enjoyed this book, but found it quite confusing at times with the timeline. If that was just woven in smoother, this would have been a 4* read.
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Maddie lost her best friend, Jo, after she chose to be with Ian despite all of Jo's warning against the relationship.
After an accident on a camping trip that left Maddie disfigured and in seek of a therapist, Maddie realises she is in fear of her husband and fears her sons safety.

A story with twists and turns and an ending that I didn't see coming but wasn't all that satisfying Beautiful Bad is a psychological thriller that is easy to get through in one sitting, the tension between the characters and not sure who to trust made for a good read.
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I thoroughly enjoyed this book from beginning to end. I'll admit that I thought I had the whole story worked out in my head, but then those last couple of chapters hit me like a ton of bricks. AND I LOVED EVERY SECOND OF IT. Annie Ward certainly has a way of crafting a well-thought out, layered, gripping thriller and I can't wait to read more from her.
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This was quite a slow burner to start and you need to stick with it but it’s a good example of a psychological thriller that leaves you guessing.  Interesting story with ptsd and army life, twists and turns that you won’t anticipate.
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Beautiful Bad is a fast moving psychological thriller.  An enjoyable read with an unreliable narrator, I was a little disappointed with the differing timelines which at times confused the narrative.
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Beautiful Bad is truly one of the most psychological of psychological thrillers.  The story builds and builds, goes back in time several years from the day of the killing, returns to the day of the killing, goes back a few weeks before the day of the killing, and all this back story really intensifies the suspense.

The book starts with the police entering the house after a distressing call to 911.  There is so much blood inside that there has to be a body – we don't know who is dead until close to the end of the book, it is just referred to as 'the killing'.  We are taken back to when Jo and Maddie were best friends and both had a love of eastern bloc countries, their languages and the cultures. Jo lives in Macedonia and Maddie lives in Bulgaria but they get together, often in dangerous travelling situations, as often as they can.  The two girls meet a group of men, including Ian, who they party and drink with and this is when the friendship starts to go awry.

Ian is working in security for army officers, escorting individuals and companies in war torn areas of the middle east and Africa.  He is clearly suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, drinking astronomical amounts of vodka and doesn't seek professional help.  Ian and Jo have some history, possibly a relationship, when Maddie isn't around, and later when Maddie and Ian are married, she still doesn't know why Ian and Jo hate each other so much.

The past story meets with present time and all secrets are laid out to be shouted about.  I thought the description of their lives in the eastern bloc countries was intense and fascinating.  The tension and suspense was high throughout and I loved the twisted turnaround ending.
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Wow, what an unbelievably twisted tale has been woven here, I was totally taken in by the situation in no way shape or form did I begin to question what might have been happening behind the scenes
A brilliant read
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An intriguing thriller that kept me turning the pages! Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing an advanced reading copy.
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I found this book easy to read, although it did take me a while to fathom out how the characters were linked and where the story was going. The story goes between different time periods which doesn't follow any logical order which builds up to the unexpected twist at the ending. The character development and relationships between them was good. It starts with a 911 call where a detective is called to a home in Meadow lark, Kansas which is full of blood. Diane, the detective, enters the house as she fears for the life of a child who is inside. 
The story then takes us to the friendship of 2 American women called Jo- a charity worker and Maddie- a journalist working in Macedonia. They meet a British bodyguard- Ian and Maddie falls in love with him. This story explores Ian's  life in the military and his struggles with PTSD and his relationships. Maddie has a baby called Charlie and she knows she must do whatever it takes to protect him, but how far is she willing to go?
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Oh my god! I can’t believe it took me so long to read this book. I was instantly gripped, it had me feeling uneasy the entire time, and I read it in one day - the perfect thriller! Although you know someone is dead and you know all of the main characters have serious issues, you don’t guess what’s happened until you’re told. A very excellent book that would also make a brilliant film, I’m sure.
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A 911 call sends the police to Maddie and Ian’s neighborhood to signs of a shocking, violent scene.

The story then goes back a few weeks before the 911 call and tells of the events leading up to that devastating day.

Told from various time lines it builds the picture, the investigation and the characters….Ian is definitely a bit damaged by PTSD, Maddie has pretty much lost contact with her best friend, Jo too. Why?

Just how did Maddie get injured? And what caused the dreadful events? Overall an intriguing thriller.

Thank you to the publishers, the author and NetGalley for a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest and unbiased review.
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Well, this book was certainly different! I thought it was going to be a behind closed doors sort of book, with a perfect marriage on the outside looking in. I was wrong! It features some quite tough war scenes, with the main character being a PTSD sufferer - so I’d say be mindful if this sort of thing distresses you - some scenes are somewhat graphic. The whole story is rather disturbing to be honest. I thought I had it all figured out but the ending had me shocked! I do wish the characters were more ‘likeable’ because I found myself not really caring who died.
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Well done to Annie Ward for highlighting the struggles that military staff have regarding PTSD - appears to have researched well and aimed to give an accurate account and understanding.
A well written book with an interesting plot.
Switch in time was well tackled and drew me into reading on.
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