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M.L. Rio

If We Were Villains

If We Were Villains

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Book Overview


Signed deluxe hardback edition complete with ribbon and specially commissioned illustrations

A gorgeous 5th-anniversary edition of the bestselling dark academia thriller complete with a brand-new cover, original illustrations, and deluxe finishes.

Blood will have blood…

I lean forward on my elbows, so my face is only a few inches from his, so he hears every word when I lower my voice. “It must eat you alive, not knowing. Not knowing who, not knowing how, not knowing why. But you didn’t know him.”

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.

Like Donna Tartt’s The Secret History, If We Were Villains draws readers into a close-knit, exclusive coterie and watches as rivalry and obsession cause alliances to fracture - with explosive results. Structured in scenes and acts and peppered with Shakespearean quotes and allusions the novel has the driving momentum of a classic tragedy. Beautifully written with a thrilling plot, it is a story of friendship, passion and what happens when driving passion becomes a dangerous obsession.

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