Book Review: Malice by Heather Walter
Malice has been on my to-read list for a very long time. I just hadn't bit the bullet. However, I received a free copy of the sequel, Misrule, through Netgalley and figured it was time!
I've been craving a villain story for a long time. I have ready so many that promise it in the premise but never deliver. I have a deep love for characters with shades of gray.
Malice did not disappoint.
Firstly, it's an LGBTQ+ novel. Set in the kingdom of Briar, Alyce is known as the Dark Grace. She is who people come to when they want to do harm to others, and because of her mysterious Vila powers, she can make it happen. Of course, only from the shadows.
Alyce was abandoned as a child and placed in the care of Miss Lavender. There are many Graces throughout Briar, but Alyce isn't a Grace. Not really. Where their blood runs gold and is used to enhance people's beauty or craft amazing innovations, Alyce's blood is green and it makes her a pariah among "polite" society.
When Alyce attends a ball at the castle and is unmasked and ridiculed for not belonging, she flees to the garden where she meets Princess Aurora.
This story is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty but with some pretty incredible world building. Walter brings in so many elements of the original fairytale and creates new ones. Because this is a villain's story, I literally found myself shouting yaaaassssss at the end, which I won't spoil. You should definitely read this!