ASK Musings

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Daily Archive: 21/05/2023



May 2023



The Maid: A Novel by Nita Prose

Written by , Posted in Reviews

Four Stars

Best for:
Those who enjoyed ‘Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine’

In a nutshell:
Molly is a maid at a fancy hotel, who discovers the dead body of a prominent hotel guest.

Worth quoting:
“Everything will be okay in the end. And if it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”

Why I chose it:
I think it had a lot of buzz around it last year so wanted to check it out.

What it left me feeling:
Maternal (for the main character); frustrated.

It’s been awhile since I read ‘Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine,’ but within minutes of starting this book, the main character reminded me of Eleanor. Molly is 25, a hotel maid, and lives alone after the grandmother who raised her died nine months ago. She’s someone who is formal but kind. Someone who always follows the rules and expects others to do the same. She reminds me of a character from that movie ‘The Invention of Lying;’ she doesn’t assume anyone could be telling her anything other than the complete truth.

Molly is the narrator of this book, and there are times when I want to hug her and times when I wanted to shake her. She misses so many clues and cues about what is going on, both before and after she discovers the body of Mr Black in the room she is set to clean. She’s someone who others judge for being a bit different, and who could easily be taken advantage of.

I originally was leaning towards a 3 or 3.5 star rating for this, but as I’ve been writing this review and reflecting on what I read, I think the book deserves a bit more. On the one hand, yes, it’s a bit of a murder mystery / thriller, but it’s also a look into how humans treat each other. How people can be taken advantage of, either because they don’t have better options, or because they don’t know any better. How employers, supervisors, colleagues can exploit workers. It’s also a commentary on how quick we are to judge people who perhaps don’t act in the ways we would, or react to situations how we think people should react.

To note: I chose the audio version, which was read by Lauren Ambrose. Some will associate her with Six Feet Under, but she’ll always be Denise from Can’t Hardly Wait. Her reading of the book did a lot to help us understand Molly.

Recommend to a Friend / Keep / Donate it / Toss it:
Recommend to a Friend