ARC Review: Malice

Malice by Heather Walter

Pub Date: April 13, 2021

There are a couple of things that set Malice apart from every other fairy tale story you’ve already read. Firstly, it’s not everyday we get to read a book from the villain’s perspective. And as we follow Alyce through the book we learn she’s really not as bad as everyone makes her out to be. Okay, let me back up. You probably have no idea what I’m talking about.

Malice is a dark retelling of the classic fairytale trope: an evil spell has befallen a beautiful princess and it can only be broken by true love’s first kiss. Well what happens when this beautiful princess befriends the evil villain the entire kingdom despises to try and break the curse her own way? What happens when the evil villain begins to fall for said princess? Oh, how the tangled webs do weave.

What really set this book off for me was the writing. It’s written just beautifully so in an eloquent language that I had to read slowly in order to savor. This book took me so long to finish because I read each line painstakingly slow, letting every word and carefully crafted sentence fully sink in. I was shocked that this was the author’s first book and really hope that a sequel will be released because I couldn’t get enough of this one.

I already knew the general plot of it so I was expecting all the twists and turns, but what made it so great was how refreshing it felt. Rooting for the bad guy and the queer love story made for an awesomely different and welcome change in a romance. It was a slow and steady build that felt natural and gave all the good feels.

The whole magic and fantasy side of the book were also done really well. Graces and their magic blood, the phrase “dragon’s teeth,” Shifters, and Vilas, it was a wonderful world to dive into. I loved how the whole village seemed to revolve around magical elixirs. To be honest beauty elixirs reminded me of the way people get filler nowadays–temporary beauty fixes that fade away. I couldn’t find anything I didn’t like about this book and for that reason I give it a solid 5 ⭐’s.

Thank you to the publisher for granting my wish with an early reader’s copy!

Look out for Malice everywhere books are sold April 13, 2021!

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