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The Maidens -Alex Michaelides

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Silent Patient comes a spellbinding tale of psychological suspense, weaving together Greek mythology, murder, and obsession…

Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike – 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, who was once herself a student at the university, quickly suspects that behind the idyllic beauty of the spires and turrets, and beneath the ancient traditions, lies something sinister. And she becomes convinced that, despite his alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of the murder. But why would the professor target one of his students? And why does he keep returning to the rites of Persephone, the maiden, and her journey to the underworld?

When another body is found, Mariana’s obsession with proving Fosca’s guilt spirals out of control, threatening to destroy her credibility as well as her closest relationships. But Mariana is determined to stop this killer, even if it costs her everything – including her own life.

I was fortunate to have been sent this amazing ARC and promo set for this book, and have only just got around to reading and writing about it as I catch up over the Summer holidays, but am pleased to be able to share my thoughts with you now!

For me, this is the perfect Summer holiday thriller/mystery. It has all the ingredients I love from the genre: a flawed/traumatised main character, unexplained past events threatening to catch up at any time, various possible culprits with mysterious behaviour that makes them look unmistakably guilty...I could go on, but I'm sure you get the gist!

A great murder mystery set in the beautiful surroundings of Cambridge colleges, involving a strange society, Greek mythology and a variety of tangled histories....if you liked Donna Tartt's Secret History, this will be right up your street! Likewise, if you loved Alex's pervious smash hit, 'The Silent Patient' you will see similarities in the patient/psychology aspect of this suspenseful tale.

You can watch Alex talking about the book at this recent author event:

'The Maidens' is published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson and is out now!

Thanks to W&N for the copy if the book and fab promo box.

Review by Rich Simpson (@richreadalot) August 2021

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