Mad by Chloe Esposito Penguin May 31st 2018
Seven days of sin. Seven days of secrets. Seven days to steal her sister’s life.
Beth has always been the golden girl, leaving her identical twin, Alvie, in her shadow. She has everything Alvie ever wanted – the money, the hot husband, the cute baby, the fast car.
So when she invites Alvie for seven sun-drenched days at her luxury villa in Sicily, Alvie accepts. Just because Alvie can’t stand Beth doesn’t mean she can’t enjoy a slice of her decadent lifestyle.
But her usually goody-two-shoes twin has a hidden agenda. And when the sisters swap identities for a day, it ends badly for Beth. Very badly.
It’s Alvie’s chance to steal the life that she deserves . . .
If she can get away with it
Oh my, I loved this novel. It had everything, sex, drugs, murder, you name it, it all happened.
The whole novel centres around Alvie, twin sister to Beth but less popular, less beautiful, less successful. She obviously had a huge chip on her shoulder, resented her mother’s indifference to her as they were growing up and the less she had to do with Beth the better, but what I loved about Alvie was that she was an opportunist and the loss of her job and a roof over her head sends her flying out to Siciliy and her sisters flash, expensive villa.
In normal novels, you might have expected a big reunion and much sisterly love and yes there is a hint, before absolute chaos ensues. Swapping their identities sets of a chain of events that are what I can only describe as total and utter madness.
I had to forget that what I was reading was based on any kind of reality and instead I immersed myself in a story that had me laughing, cringing and recoiling in horror at Alvie’s escapades
What I loved most was Alvie’s transformation from a down and out individual with no prospects to a self assured, gun toting, criminally minded person out for everything she could get and more. Her personality, and drive leapt from the page and if at first I didn’t like her, I was soon an admirer, gasping at her antics, her audacity and the ludicrousness of the situations she found herself in. If ever there was a character made for the big screen then Alvie was it!
Eposito’s narrative was fast and furious, the imagery just superb. I felt myself transported to the sweltering summer heat of Siciliy, the dark sultry nights just perfect for the odd bit of criminal activity.
The plot itself was full of twist and turns, one twist slightly more outlandish than the last, the pacing at times frenetic and tension filled. My page turning was equally as frenetic as the plot as I raced through the pages eager to discover just what Alvie would do next.
This isn’t a novel for the faint hearted, nor is it a novel steeped in reality. It is a novel that will transport you away from the everyday mundanity of life, hold you in its clutches, put your head in a fast spin before spitting you out unceremoniously at the end, leaving you wanting more of the character that is Alvie.
Thank goodness Esposito has written a sequel, Bad, and I am hoping that it will be even more outlandish and fabulous then Mad!!
Thank you to Katie Ashworth and Penguin for a copy of Mad to read and review and for inviting My Bookish Blogspot to participate in the blogtour.
About the author
Chloé Esposito is from Cheltenham and now lives in London. She has a BA and MA in English from Oxford University, where her dissertation focused on 19th-century feminist writers. She has been a senior management consultant, an English teacher at two of the UK’s top private schools and a fashion stylist at Condé Nast. She is a graduate of the Faber Academy and is now writing full-time.
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