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becke_davis
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Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

I'm late posting this, since I spent the day flying from Orlando with my daughter and her three cats and getting them temporarily settled in (until her furniture arrives, they're staying with us).

 

Be sure to check out today's featured release by author ALEX MARWOOD. Alex is on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/alex.marwood and on Twitter here:

https://twitter.com/AlexMarwood1

 

Check out this review: http://www.crimefictionlover.com/2013/03/the-wicked-girls/

 

More links related to THE WICKED GIRLS:

 

http://www.ma-agency.com/books/the_wicked_girls

 

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11940384-the-wicked-girls

 

http://itsacrimeukbooks.wordpress.com/2012/07/29/the-wicked-girls-alex-marwood/

 

 

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becke_davis
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

Alex doesn't seem to have a website, but I found this bio online:

 

Alex Marwood

Alex Marwood is the pseudonym of a successful journalist who has worked extensively across the British press. Alex lives in South London.

 

Picture of Alex Marwood

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becke_davis
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

The Wicked Girls  

 

Overview

 

 

A gritty, psychological thriller that asks the question: How well can you know anyone?
 
On a fateful summer morning in 1986, two eleven-year-old girls meet for the first time. By the end of the day, they will both be charged with murder. Twenty-five years later, journalist Kirsty Lindsay is reporting on a series of sickening attacks on young female tourists in a seaside vacation town when her investigation leads her to interview carnival cleaner Amber Gordon. For Kirsty and Amber, it’s the first time they’ve seen each other since that dark day so many years ago. Now with new, vastly different lives—and unknowing families to protect—will they really be able to keep their wicked secret hidden?
            Gripping and fast-paced, with an ending that will stay with you long after you’ve read it,The Wicked Girls will appeal to fans of the Academy Award–nominated film Heavenly Creaturesand the novels of Rosamund Lupton and Chevy Stevens.

 

Library Journal

Marwood's riveting debut novel explores how a single act of violence committed by two 11-year-old girls not only shadows the rest of their lives but also connects them to a series of killings at a seaside vacation community years later. It's been 25 years since Jade Walker and Annabel Oldacre were convicted of murder, and their lives have taken dramatically different turns. Jade, now known as Kirsty, is a journalist with a dedicated husband and two children. Bel, now called Amber, supervises the evening cleaning shift at an amusement park on the boardwalk in Whitmouth. When young women begin to turn up dead in Whitmouth, Kirsty and Amber reconnect by chance. The rash of killings threatens to expose their carefully guarded secrets—and for one of them, these new murders hit very close to home.

 

VERDICT Marwood has written a terrific thriller, full of dark turns and dread, and the twisty ending will stick with readers long after they finish the book. Fans of intelligent page-turners by such authors as Laura Lippman and Gillian Flynn will snatch this one up. [This title is a 2013 Thriller Award nominee for Best Paperback Original Novel.—Ed.]—Amy Hoseth, Colorado State Univ. Lib., Fort Collins

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becke_davis
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

Penguin (USA) has this excerpt on their website:

http://booksellers.penguin.com/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9780143123866,00.html?sym=EXC

 

 

 

The girl is dead. She doesn’t need to go near her to see that. Chinless, sightless, rag-doll dead. Wearing a striped tank top and a tube skirt; both have gathered around her waist, puppy-fat breasts and white thighs reflected in the mirrors, back, back, back to infinity.

Amber is not looking directly at the body. She’s nowhere near, in fact. She’s cleaned the mirror maze so often that she knows its tricks and turns, the way a figure at the far end of the building can seem, when you enter, to be standing right in front of you.

Or – in the case of the dead girl – half lying, her head and shoulders pressed against the wall.

Amber grips the door frame, struggles to breathe. Oh shit, she thinks. Why did I have to find her?

She can’t be more than seventeen. The mottled face – the mouth half open as though she is trying, one more time, to take a breath – still has traces of unformed childhood around the jaw. Blonde hair, blown and flicked up. Giant hoop earrings. Eyes made huge by half a pot of electric-blue eyeshadow, glitter gel spangling the naked décolletage. Platform boots, improbable in the angles they form with the mirrored floor.

She’s been at Stardust, thinks Amber. Saturday. It’s Seventies night at Stardust.

She feels sick. Glances behind her through the open door and sees that the concourse is empty. As though all her colleagues have dropped off the edge of the world.

She steps inside and closes the door to block out the light. Doesn’t want anyone else to see. Not yet. Not while shock has ripped her mask away.

Thank God I’m wearing rubber gloves, she thinks nonsensically. She has cleaned the place every night for the past three years and, however careful she is, her fingerprints will be all over it. Let alone the prints of half the visitors who’ve passed through since this time last night. They try to keep the smudges down by handing out disposable plastic gloves on the door, but you can’t actually force someone to wear them; can’t police the interior 24/7.

Innfinnityland is the only attraction Amber cleans herself, since her promotion. The place makes everyone uneasy, as though they are afraid that they will get lost and never find their way back, or that the mirrors themselves are infected with ghosts. Too many times the work, which needs to be autistically methodical, has been rushed and skimped, and smears have remained; and in a place like this, a single smear becomes an infinite number, the original hard to track down if you’re not working your way through, fingertip by fingertip, glass by glass. She decided long ago that it was easiest simply to do it herself. Wishes fervently now that she hadn’t.

The girl has green eyes, like Amber’s own. Her handbag –mock-croc – has fallen open and scattered poignant remnants of plans made, hopes cherished. A lipstick, a bottle of JLo, a pink phone with a metallic charm shaped like a stiletto court shoe . . .breezy statements of identity, turned tawdry beneath their owner’s glassy stare.

There is no blood. Just the impression of squeezing fingers livid on her neck. This is the third one this year, Amber thinks. It can’t be a coincidence. Two is coincidence; three is . . . oh, you poor child.

Amber is cold to the bone, though the night is warm. She edges her way forward slowly, like an old person, one shaking hand supporting her against the mirrors as she moves. As she advances, new reflections cross her sight line: a million corpses strewn across a hall of infinite size.

Then suddenly, herself. Face white, eyes large, mouth a thin line. Standing above the body like Lady Macbeth.

What were you going to do? Touch her?

The thought freezes her to the spot. She’s not been thinking. Shock has turned her into a creature of instinct, an automaton. Has made her forgetful.

What are you doing? You can’t be involved. You can’t. Anonymous. You’re meant to be anonymous. Get involved, they’ll work it out. Who you are. And once they know who you are…

She feels panic start up inside. The edgy tingle, the queasy itch. Familiar, never far from the surface. She needs to decide quickly.

I can’t be the one to find her.

She begins to back away. Feels her way back to the entrance. The dead girl gazes at infinity. Damn you, Amber thinks, suddenly angry. Why did you have to get yourself killed here? What are you even doing here, anyway? It’s been closed for hours. The park’s been closed for hours.

She catches her own thoughts and lets out a barking, ironic laugh. ‘Shit,’ she says out loud. ‘Oh God, what am I meant to do?’

Go and find help. Do what anyone would do, Amber. Go out there and act the way you feel: shocked and scared. No one’s going to ask questions. There’s someone killing girls in this town, but it doesn’t mean they’ll recognise who youare.

But they’ll take your photo. You know what the press are like. Anything to fill their pages; details to make up for lack of facts. You’ll be all over the papers as the woman who found the body.

I can’t do this.

Someone tries the entrance door, the sudden noise of the handle turning uselessly making her jump. She hears Jackie and Moses: Jackie chattering and flirting, Moses responding in monosyllables, but the smile clear in his voice.

‘She’s always in here,’ says Jackie. ‘After tea break. Amber? You in there? The door’s locked!’

Amber holds her breath, afraid that even the sound of her exhalation will call to them. Oh God, what do I do? I’ve got to get out of here.

‘C’mon,’ says Jackie. ‘Let’s try the back. Maybe she’s taking a break.’

‘Sure,’ says Moses.

That’s it, there’s no escape now. She hears their footsteps recede down the steps as they walk off towards the entrance to the service alley. Two minutes before they get here, maybe. She can’t get away, can’t undo the moment of discovery.

She straightens up, steps over the girl’s marionette legs and hurries to the emergency exit hidden behind the black curtain beyond. Best they find her out on the steps, out in the fresh air, throwing up.

 

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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

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becke_davis
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

I'm excited to read this, but I may have to wrestle my copy from my daughter first!

 

The Wicked Girls  

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maxcat
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

This book sounds very good! And I'm glad your back and your daughter will now be near you.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep - Robert Frost
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dhaupt
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood

Glad you're back safe and sound Becke, moving is brain addling and even more so if it's cross country like this one.

The novel looks really good

thanks

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becke_davis
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Re: Featured New Release: THE WICKED GIRLS by Alex Marwood


maxcat wrote:

This book sounds very good! And I'm glad your back and your daughter will now be near you.


There have been sooo many good books out this summer. My to-be-read pile is soooo big - I didn't get ANY reading done while I was in Florida. We were so hot and tired from packing, we we didn't have the energy to do anything!