When I Was Alice

CamCat. Jun. 2024. 320p. ISBN 9780744310672. $27.99. M
In her adult debut, YA author Murgia (“Angel Star” series), spins a genre-bending time-travel tale that melds mystery and romance in glittering Old Hollywood, all while exposing the dark side of fame. After a tragic accident that leaves her brother in a coma in present-day Los Angeles, Grace Brighton climbs the Hollywood sign to make a desperate wish. She slips and falls but never hits the ground. Instead, Grace awakens in 1953 to find herself the talk of Tinsel Town. Everyone believes that she is Alice Montgomery, a starlet who disappeared just days earlier. When those closest to Alice don’t seem thrilled at her alleged return, Grace begins to suspect something terrible has happened to her doppelganger. As she uncovers Alice’s dark secrets, Grace begins to fear for her own safety and wonders if it’s possible for someone to die before they were ever born. This singular story is fleshed out with eccentric supporting characters and a star-crossed romance.
VERDICT At once frothy and dark, this book will appeal to mystery and thriller fans who loved TV’s Quantum Leap, the “Outlander” series, or the works of Susanna Kearsley.
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