Publisher: Corgi Books
Rating: 3 of 5
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.
You may have read the books from Lauren Kate's Fallen series, but have you stumbled on The Betrayal of Natale Hargrove yet? Natalie Hargrove is many things; she's beautiful, popular and slightly evil. Her superficial life is seemingly perfect, that is until a fatal prank changes everything. The death of Justin Balmer sets in motion a series of events that help reveal who Natale is and how she ended up that way.
Due to the way in which this book was written, Natale's past was kept hidden from the reader for the majority of the book. The secrets that surround her upbringing made it very difficult for me to connect with Natale. At times when her superficiality and conniving behaviour were at their peak, I struggled to even like her. It wasn't until the end of the book that I began to understand how Natale ended up in such a convoluted situation and why she loathed Justin Balmer.
The one thing that stood out for me with this book was how racy and raw some of the scenes were, especially in comparison to other YA books out there. As an older reader of YA fiction this obviously was not an issue for me however it might be for some young readers. With this being said, these scenes were probably some of my favourites in this book. They were written with a lot description and seemed to add something quite intriguing to the plot.
Looking back on this book I can say that the ending definitely made it. Everything before the final chapters was merely leading up to the heart stopping final moments. If you are curious to know how Lauren Kate's writing has evolved then I definitely suggest you pick up this book. The style that readers love in Fallen and Torment found its beginning in The Betrayal of Natale Hargrove.