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Hello and happy publishing day to If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio. Welcome to my stop on the blog tour – once again, a big thank you to Philippa at Titan Books for organizing, and including me, on this tour.
About the book:
Oliver Marks has just served ten years for the murder of one of his closest friends – a murder he may or may not have committed. On the day he’s released, he’s greeted by the detective who put him in prison. Detective Colborne is retiring, but before he does, he wants to know what really happened ten years ago.
As a young actor studying Shakespeare at an elite arts conservatory, Oliver noticed that his talented classmates seem to play the same roles onstage and off – villain, hero, tyrant, temptress – though Oliver felt doomed to always be a secondary character in someone else’s story. But when the teachers change up the casting, a good-natured rivalry turns ugly, and the plays spill dangerously over into life.
When tragedy strikes, one of the seven friends is found dead. The rest face their greatest acting challenge yet: convincing the police, and themselves, that they are blameless.
Paperback: 400 pages
Published by: Titan Books, 13th June 2017
The characters’ love of theatre is at the heart of this novel, with obsession, passion, tragedy, love, and betrayal also peppered throughout the story. Rio packs drama in to every crevice of every page and she does a great job of making it unfold hastily before our eyes.
Rio clearly knows her stuff when it comes to Shakespeare (sadly some of which was perhaps lost on me…) and the novel is so rich in detail. It is absolutely jam-packed with Shakespearian quotations, but don’t let that put you off if you’re not an English-literature lover! For me, it flowed effortlessly in to the rest of the narrative and added another dimension to it; the period dialogue added drama and intrigue.
I was hooked on If We Were Villains from the first few chapters and then utterly engrossed until the final page. I definitely recommend this one if you’re looking for a solid literary thriller, which will leave you thinking about it for a long time after.
You can see the other posts from the blog tour here:
I received an advanced copy of If We Were Villains from the lovely Philippa at Titan Books for an honest and unbiased review – thank you,