Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Review: Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land

Title: Good Me, Bad Me
Author: Ali Land
Published: September 2017, Flatiron Books
Format: ARC Paperback, 292 pages
Source: Publisher

Milly's mother is a serial killer. Though Milly loves her mother, the only way to make her stop is to turn her in to the police. Milly is given a fresh start: a new identity, a home with an affluent foster family, and a spot at an exclusive private school.

But Milly has secrets, and life at her new home becomes complicated. As her mother's trial looms, with Milly as the star witness, Milly starts to wonder how much of her is nature, how much of her is nurture, and whether she is doomed to turn out like her mother after all.

When tensions rise and Milly feels trapped by her shiny new life, she has to decide: Will she be good? Or is she bad? She is, after all, her mother's daughter.

My thoughts: It's because of books like this that I love reading psychological thrillers...and to think that this one is a debut novel...I'm speechless! This is such a chilling, dark, twisted book that just consumes you once you start reading it. And let's just talk about this cover - it's intriguing and eye-catching - I love it!!!

This book is intense, it's gripping, it's dark - but what I appreciated is that it doesn't focus on the gruesome details of the murders, but rather the psychology of everything. It's such a smart psychological thriller - one that gets under your skin as you delve into the psyche of this young girl and all that she's endured.

This book has such crazy characterization...I'm still thinking about Annie, now Milly, weeks after I finished this book - and yes, I did need some serious time to process my thoughts on this book. Annie/Milly is a complex and unique character - but who wouldn't after being raised by a serial killer.  Most chilling, though, are the mental conversations that she has with her mother. I found myself wavering between sympathy for Annie/Milly for all that she has gone through, but then she does something or thinks something that has you wonder if she is playing you and you start to second guess everything. It's unsettling for sure!

Everything in this book is so well crafted - from the dialogue to the sentence structure to the plotting itself. It's told from Annie/Milly's eye's and so we see her internal dialogue - this is so powerful! Her thought processes and the internal struggle...it's intense. To the outside world, she's presenting her good side, but on the inside, we see how she really feels, what she's really thinking. And every time you think you have her figured out...think again!

This is the type of book that once you start reading, you can't possibly put it down - you just need to find out what is going to happen next. The tension is slowly building as you frantically flip through the pages. This is certainly one book that will stick with you long after you finish it...digesting everything you have just read. 

For a debut author, Ali Land has certainly put herself on the map and I cannot wait to see what comes next from her!!!



  1. I LOOOVEEEE psychological thrillers. Will def add to TBR. Great to discover new authors through their debut novels and like it that much!

  2. Thank you for the review. New one for me.


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