Thursday, August 31, 2023

Dark Beauty by Blake Rudman - Book Tour & Review

Dark Beauty

by Blake Rudman

Black Tide Book Tours

Aug 29 - Sep 01

"Dark Beauty is indeed a thing of beauty. A page turner from the first page to the last! Superb!"
Andy Rausch, author of thriller novels Layla's Score, American Trash, and Until One of Us Is Dead.

Tessa and Kristin Morgan are identical twins, exquisitely beautiful, and have the world at their perfectly pedicured feet; they are also profoundly different beneath their stunning facades.
Tessa is the laser-focused academic with her eyes firmly fixed upon a career in neurology, while Kristin exploits her striking looks and undeniable power over men to carve out a single-minded path to fame and fortune as a model and actress; an ambition she also holds for her sister.
But, on the night of the pair’s debut as top-tier models, and with a high-profile movie role in the bag, tragedy strikes the twins in the form of a cruel acid attack by an unknown assailant. Thus, a gruesome chain of events begins - one that leaves a trail of blood, death, and devastation behind both Tessa and Kristin.
As Tessa fights to rebuild her life and uncover the truth behind the attack, she finds herself getting closer and closer to an uncomfortable truth about her sister and her search for the truth turns into a nightmare struggle to stay alive.

Universal link for the book on Amazon

My Review
Dark Beauty is my second book by the author, and I have to say, I am definitely becoming a fan. 
As a twin myself (fraternal, not identical), this book intrigued me. I was curious to know how it would play out. Would it be like The Parent Trap but more horror-esque? Would it be something else entirely? I had to know. And after reading it, I can say that this was definitely a wild ride. 
The story follows Tess and Kristin Morgan, identical twins who might look the same, but underneath that beauty, they're completely different. Tess is the golden child, with big dreams of going to med school to study neurology. Kristin has other aspirations. Kristin wants to be famous. She knows she's stunningly beautiful, and she knows she can use that to make her dreams come true. But Kristin doesn't want to go it alone. She's adamant that Tessa join her on her journey to fame and fortune. Tessa isn't interested, but she agrees to do some modeling to make her sister happy. The twins blow up and eventually land a movie deal. Unfortunately for Kristin, her goal of attaining superstardom isn't going as planned. Once again, Tessa has become the golden child. The one who gets everything. Including a hospital stay courtesy of a vicious attack from one of Kristin's spurned lovers. Now, disfigured and trying to rebuild their lives, Tess and Kristin go their separate ways after a falling out. But things are about to get a whole lot worse...
I really enjoyed this book. It was... well, it was a lot. I kinda felt bad for Kristin at times, but she also was the reason her life wasn't going according to plan. She refused to deal with some secrets from her past that not even Tess knew about, which made her the way she was. Which then, in turn, was ultimately her downfall. Instead of taking responsibility for herself and her own actions, she blamed Tess, and any man who came into contact with her. Her life sucked because of them. At least in her mind. 
Tess, however, was a bit too nice for her own good. Even when her sister pulled an egregious stunt that potentially ruined everything, Tess was willing to forgive. Her desire to keep her sister happy and placated was almost her downfall. Thankfully, though, Tess had a couple of people looking out for her.
The plot is engaging and will suck you in. It also gives us quite a bit of backstory leading up to the events at the beginning, and then everything after that event is pretty crazy. 
Also, I found myself relating to both twins in some way. I related to Tess because even though my twin and I aren't identical, I got the better end of the stick, if you will, in terms of physical attributes and health (at least according to society's standards). But I also related to Kristin, because as a kid/teenager, I wanted nothing more than to get my big break and become an actor. That obviously never panned out, but that's probably a good thing. 
If you're a fan of dark, thrilling books, or if you have read any of the author's other books and happen to be a fan, you'll want to give Dark Beauty a read. You won't be disappointed.
4.5 stars!

About the author

Blake Rudman enjoyed a former, successful career in executive management, building his own companies from the ground up.

Success or not, Blake’s heart has always been in the written word, and the myriad ideas he spent much of his spare time jotting down in notebooks, Post-Its, and scraps of paper whenever the inspiration hit him.

Now a breakout author of five noir thriller novels – all to be published in 2023 – Blake’s destiny of becoming a writer of some renown is well under way.

When he’s not working diligently on his next novel, Blake spends quality time with his family and tropical fish.

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