Castillo writes with honesty and courage about her abusive past relationships. Castillo refrains from detailing all the subtle psychological conditioning abusers use on their victims in her early relationships, but an informed reader can clearly track the sequence of events threaded through this aspect of Malice Intent. It’s a sad fact that many women, and men, will recognise the behavioural patterns involved and identify with the minor dissociation Castillo touches on. Unfortunately, it doesn’t sufficiently illuminate the complex toxicity of abusive relationships or the effects of prolonged gaslighting, a manipulative tactic that an abuser uses. For this reason, Castillo’s willingness to believe in and forgive Peter can be difficult to read. Malice Intent is both brave and heartfelt, and challenging to read because of this.
Reviewed for Reader's Favorite