Thursday 6 January 2011

Review and giveaway: The Betrayal of Natalie Hargrove by Lauren Kate.

For Review: Random House.  Published 6 January 2011
From Goodreads:  A steamy Southern beauty makes one fatal mistake.

Natalie Hargrove would kill to be her high school’s Palmetto Princess. But her boyfriend Mike King doesn’t share her dream and risks losing the honor of Palmetto Prince to Natalie’s nemesis, Justin Balmer. So she convinces Mike to help play a prank on Justin. . . one that goes terribly wrong. They tie him to the front of the church after a party—when they arrive the next morning, Justin is dead.

From blackmail to buried desire, dark secrets to darker deeds, Natalie unravels. She never should’ve messed with fate. Fate is the one thing more twisted than Natalie Hargrove.

Cruel Intentions meets Macbeth in this seductive, riveting tale of conscience and consequence

The story centers around Natalie and her obsession to be crowned the next Palmetto Princess, with her boyfriend Mike being crown Prince.   But when a prank they play goes horribly wrong and Justin Balmer is found dead , Natalie is forced to do everything in her power to keep their involvement under wraps.  Otherwise she'll lose everything she has worked so hard for...

I was surprised at how quickly I read this one - I finished the whole book in a couple of hours.  I thought it was skillfully plotted with the story unfolding slowly and building momentum. The author held my interest by not revealing everything about Natalie and her past straight away.  Instead,  we get snippets that explain why Natalie is the way she is but I'm not sure they really justify her actions.   I found it hard to identify with her and understand why being the next Palmetto Princess was that important.  Mike was likeable enough though and I did rather liked J.B.  I think I found him intriguing and really wanted to know why Natalie disliked him so much. 

As the story progresses, the more Natalie and Mike unravel.  I loved their relationship in the beginning and found it really interesting watching the repercussions to what they had done.  While the prank they played on J.B could be deemed a horrible accident it is their later decisions and actions that seal their own fate so to speak.  And I'd be lying if I said I didn't get a guilty pleasure out of watching them get their just deserves!

Described as 'Cruel Intentions meets Macbeth' I thought the idea behind the book was clever and I really liked Lauren Kate's writing -  it made this one quick and easy to read.  However,  I just could not bring myself to like Natalie, and despite the  suspicion that I wasn't supposed to, I wanted to.   I was hoping the ending would redeem her in some way but, for me at least, it did not.  I think this is a personal preference on my part and many readers will enjoy having the story narrated by a character they 'love to hate'.

Fun to read and had more than enough drama to hold my interest.  The writing makes this one worth reading and I'll definitely be trying more of Lauren Kate's work.


Thanks to the lovely team at Random House I have 5 copies to giveaway!
The contest is open to everyone (there will be 4 UK winners and 1 International winner).
Closing date is 16 January 2011
You do not need to be a follower of my blog to enter.

Just fill in the form below - Good Luck:)

This giveaway is now closed. Winners will be contacted shortly.


Unknown said...

Thanks for a great review, it sounds interesting, I might have to check it out.

Brodie said...

Great review! I've been debating whether to read this, since I enjoyed Lauren's other books. Definitely going to now. Thanks for the giveaway!

serendipity_viv said...

What a great giveaway. I couldn't wait to enter. Thanks for doing this competition.

Unknown said...

I love your review! and thanks for the Giveway! :D

District YA said...

Awesome contest - Thanks :D

Tales of Whimsy said...

O O O coool! I want! I am SO entering. Yippiee for international!

Jessy said...

I really like Lauren's Fallen series, so I'll have to check this one out too. Thanks for the review.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed your review :) not great score but worth a read I think. Thanks for hosting a fab giveaway :))

Lauren said...

Great review, and I kind of know what you mean about not being able to like Natalie. I guess I didn't like her but I felt sorry for her in some ways. She reminds me of Blair from Gossip Girl in that way.

Samantha (A Dream of Books) said...

Thank you so much for the chance to win a copy of the book :)

As soon as I read 'Cruel Intentions meets Macbeth' I knew I had to read this. Great review!

Michelle Fluttering Butterflies said...

Oh I really want to read this one, thanks for the chance to! :)

Nina said...

Thank you for this fab giveaway. I really am loving the cover of this book!


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