The Maid, Nita Prose: A Review
This is my first read set for publication in early 2022, and while I tried to wait, the premise sounded too good to sit in my queue--especially when I saw this already making the rounds on Twitter. So, of course, I dove in.
Molly Gray is a twenty-five-year old maid who loves her job. She takes pride in her work, even though social interactions can be tricky, and she doesn't always read people's expressions well. Her orderly life is turned upside down when she discovers the illustrious Mr. Black dead in his hotel room, and as clues come into focus, Molly goes from the unseen help to the prime suspect in a murder investigation. Determined to prove her innocence, Molly and an unlikely group of friends band together to find out what really happened to Mr. Black.
I really enjoyed this book.
Prose's prose (every pun intended) is crisp, witty, and effortlessly readable. I loved Molly's voice: the dry humor, the slightly-removed observations that put us directly in the uncomfortable position to experience interactions from her point of view. She reminded me of Stephen King's Holly Gibney from the Mr. Mercedes series, so if you liked her, you're going to love Molly Maid.
The plot was well structured, fast-moving, and interesting, and while most of the action happens off-screen, so to speak, there was no shortage of intrigue. Prose did an excellent job pacing the reveals, especially through the strategic use of memories and flashbacks.
I also appreciated the social commentary beneath the light mystery, the examination of stereotyping and bias against those who may not be able to stand up for themselves, those who work minimum wage jobs or live paycheck to paycheck. No spoilers, but Molly is dismissed for the very same reasons that readers will fall in love with her, and she's perfectly aware of how to use her social shortcomings or missteps to her advantage.
An eclectic cast of characters and fun whodunit, The Maid is an entertaining read with a big heart. For fans of cozy mystery, murder with a dash of comedy, or anyone who loves a quirky narrator, add The Maid to your 2022 TBRs now.
Thank you to Ballantine and NetGalley for providing an eARC in exchange for honest review consideration.