Bad Marie opens with Marie living in her friend Ellen’s chic New York apartment working as a nanny for Ellen’s young daughter Caitlin. In fact, the opening of the book involves Ellen and her husband Benoit coming home after a night out and discovering Marie passed out drunk in the bathtub with Caitlin. Creepy, right? Ellen is of the same mind. She had been kind enough (and dumb enough) to let Marie into her home even though Marie has just been released from prison. She let’s Marie know that she is no longer welcome in her home. What happens from that point on is simply unbelievably ridiculous, in a good way.
Without giving too much away (I hope), Marie flees to Europe with Benoit and Caitlin. She cares deeply for Caitlin and has been intent on seducing Benoit from early on, which proves to be an easy feat. I won’t get into the escapades that ensue from there, but the situations Marie puts herself in and the decisions she makes stray further and further from what could be considered realistic. I would say that in most cases, that would irritate me, but in this case I wasn’t bothered by it in the least. I loved seeing what kind of scraps Marie was going to get herself into next. It was fun to read about a character that was always flying by the seat of her pants!
Bad Marie is a gritty novel and Marie is a truly interesting character. It was hard to decide where my loyalties lay. At times I was rooting for Marie, even though her behavior was often reprehensible. I think part of this was because she really was a caring person at heart. The love and affection she felt for Caitlin was palpable and seemed much more real that the love of Ellen and Benoit for their own child.
Speaking of Benoit, he was a real douche. I could see why Marie was attracted to him, but really–his true character became evident pretty quickly. Any type of paternal instinct that you might expect from a father was seriously lacking, and I quickly tired of him.
I loved the gritty drama that was Bad Marie.
I borrowed this book from my local library.