Review: The Maidens

  • Title: The Maidens
  • Author: Alex Michaelides
  • Genre: Mystery, Thriller
  • Year: 2021
  • Synopsis: Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek Tragedy professor at Cambridge University, he is adored by everyone —particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens. Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge. Mariana becomes convinced that, despite his alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of the murder. But why would the professor target one of his students?

The Maidens is a page-turner psychological thriller following Mariana, a group therapist who finds herself involved in the murders happening in Cambridge.

There are two narrators in this novel. Mariana’s perspective is written in the third person, while other chapters are anonymous recountings written in the first person — presumably the murderer. We don’t know this for sure.

I guessed who the killer was halfway through the book, although I was hoping to be wrong. However, I would’ve never guessed the motive. The plot twist at the end was something I hadn’t expected.

There is also a crossover with The Silent Patient, a few of its characters make appearances here, providing the readers with some “aha” moments. So I do think you’ll enjoy The Maidens more if you’ve already read The Silent Patient. You can read my review on The Silent Patient here.

I liked the references to Greek mythology and how they combined well with the suspense. It leaves the reader guessing whether it’s all really just mythology or if the Greek gods do hold some sort of power. Maybe it’s all just a coincidence.

However, some parts felt like textbook explanations of psychology. Don’t get me wrong, as a psychologist myself I enjoyed it, but it made me feel like I was in university again. Perhaps the author should’ve shown more and explained less.

But overall a must-read!


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