Wednesday, February 17, 2016

*Review* Free of Malice by Liz Lazarus

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Published: February 18, 2016
Pages: 274
Setting: Atlanta, Georgia


Laura Holland awakes in the middle of the night to see a stranger standing in her bedroom doorway. She manages to defend herself from the would-be rapist, though he threatens to return as he retreats. Traumatized with recurring nightmares, Laura seeks therapy and is exposed to a unique treatment called EMDR. She also seeks self-protection— buying a gun against the wishes of her husband. When Laura learns she could have gone to prison had she shot her fleeing assailant, she decides to write a hypothetical legal case using the details of that night. She enlists the help of criminal defense lawyer, Thomas Bennett, who proves to be well versed in the justice system but has an uncanny resemblance to her attacker. As the two work together to develop the story, Laura’s discomfort escalates particularly when Thomas seems to know more about that night than he should. Reality and fiction soon merge as her real life drama begins to mirror the fiction she’s trying to create.


I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. 

There isn't a whole lot I can say about this book, because I feel like almost everything I want to talk about is spoilery (and yes, I know that's not a word). Even vague allusions to events could probably be considered spoilers because they will likely give away plot twists before you reach them, and that would suck for you as a reader. 

I can say that I was firmly implanted in the MC's head from the beginning, feeling her fear, apprehension, and paranoia. I been kind of wanted to buy a gun and I'm so anti-gun in my personal life that I won't allow my Army vet husband to have a gun in our house. 

A highlight of the book for me was getting to see the therapists notes from each appointment. I even found myself paying more attention to some of the things mentioned in them.

My one issue with the book is that I felt like the ending was rushed a bit. There was loads of build-up and then it was just over. The implementation just didn't work for me.

Overall I give Free of Malice 4 out of 5 stars because it made me feel everything personally, but felt rushed at the end. - Katie 

Buy the Book

About the Author

Liz grew up in Valdosta, GA, known for its high school football and the last watering hole on highway I-75 before entering Florida. She was editor of her high school newspaper and salutatorian of her class. She followed in her father's footsteps, graduating from Georgia Tech with an engineering degree and went on to a successful career at General Electric.

The events that inspired her to write FREE OF MALICE happened her senior year of college. Liz was living off campus in an area called Home Park when she was jarred awake by the sound of her bedroom door crashing open. She admits that she surprised even herself at her ability to fight back and this would-be-rapist eventually fled. Though her voice was hoarse from screaming and her fingers bloody from his bites, she physically survived the attack. Emotionally, however, her sense of security was shaken. As a means to heal, she began writing about that night and the changes to her life. That journal became FREE OF MALICE, a psychological thriller due out in Feb. 2016.

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