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It’s December 2022, and I am still searching for a book to ignite my reading interest again. I have three unfinished books (or, better say, barely started). Desperately trying to find a way out, I head to my audiobook app again…
I decided to recheck some of the book recommendations, and here it is — an excellent red cover that attracts attention.
A book for less than 10 hours.
A story that promises a mystery.
I decide to listen to The Maid book by Nita Prose. And this is the right decision.
In this article, I will go through my personal experience with the novel The Maid, share my favorite positive and negative reviews from Goodreads, and finish this article with a bunch of The Maid book club discussion questions.
The Maid: Story Overview
I am your maid. I’m the one who cleans your hotel room, who enters like a phantom when you’re out gallivanting for the day, no care at all about what you’ve left behind, the mess, or what I might see when you’re gone.
These opening lines of The Maid’s Prologue just got me.
The story follows, and the main character, the narrator of the story, introduces herself. Her name is Molly Grey.
She works as a maid at the prestigious Regency Grand Hotel. Molly is extremely diligent about her job, and whenever she cleans the room, she always strives to reach a state of perfection.
Molly is a young woman living alone since her grandmother died some time ago.
Her grandmother was her guide through her social life (with which Molly struggles a lot), and now her life is challenging without her grandmother’s interpretation of life.
The story follows, and we realize Molly is not like everyone else.
It feels like she has some social issue, but you are not sure what type of issue (is this a result of being raised by her grandmother only? Or maybe she has some sort of autism spectrum?).
In any case, you see that she is not like everyone else.
So we have Molly, The Maid, going on her usual work routine, cleaning the room of one of the wealthiest hotel guests — Charles Black, when she, purely by accident, discovers Mr. Black dead in his bed.
And this is what the story is about.
The setting is fantastic. We have:
- a prestigious hotel (I imagine The Grand Budapest Hotel all the time)
- a quirky main character Molly (who reminds me of Eleanor Oliphant, tell me I’m not alone here)
- a mysterious death
And almost ten hours ahead to reveal the truth and discover dirty secrets.
My Feelings and Thoughts When Reading The Maid
The story’s beginning immediately piqued my interest, and I couldn’t stop listening to it.
Nita Prose’s book hooked me; I was looking for that as I tried to get out of the reading slug.
Here is how my feelings changed throughout the story:
- High interest and intrigue — Molly introduces herself. Molly finds the body. Here we have a socially-awkward person finding a dead body in the room, and you immediately sense — something will go wrong. And it does.
- Slight impatience — the dead body is found, and the mystery should be resolved. I feel impatient only because I want to hear more of the detective line. And, of course, Nita Prose keeps me on that hook by sharing Molly’s memories of previous days at the hotel, which also turn into her memories of living with grandma. So impatience is definitely a positive thing here.
- “Of course, you’re not that simple” — as the story progress, Molly shares more of her social interactions with hotel guests. I won’t be going into any spoilers, but I’ll say that it turns out — she knows many things connected to the murder, and she could help the case tremendously. This was when I got the “oh, so now it gets even more intriguing” type of moment.
- “Oh, come on, you are better than that” — now I’m fully immersed in the story, and here comes the part where Molly’s ‘social issues’ play against her. She talks to all kinds of people and you immediately spot a bad guy. But Molly doesn’t. She naively believes what people say, although their words have double meanings. Everyone gets that, but not Molly. And at this point, I feel frustrated. I want to yell at her and tell her, “Girl wake up. Don’t you see what’s going on? Just connect the dots”. But she doesn’t.
- A complete satisfaction — a couple more hours and the book is completed. The story ends as I want it to end, and that’s amazing. Bravo, Nita Prose.
The Maid audiobook experience was totally worth it, and now I’m going to proceed and share my thoughts on other people’s reviews on Goodreads.
I’ll also share answers to some often-asked questions about the book The Maid and will end up with a list of my questions for the book club discussion of The Maid.
If you are also into audiobooks, please check out The Maid audiobook here.
Every time I finish the book, I check all types of reviews to compare with my impression.
Before we proceed, here are the general details about the book:
- Goodreads score: 3.8
- Number of pages: 304
- Publication date: January 4, 2023
Below are some of the reviews I just loved:
What positive reviews say about The Maid (3-5 stars)
I’m 100% on the same page with Jayme here. I also think this novel identifies as “cozy mystery” and I have to add it is a perfect genre for me personally when I’m not sure what to read next or I need reading motivation.
And if you are into mysteries and thrillers (not only the cozy ones), make sure to check out our list of crime thrillers here.
Exactly! It is easy and fun; I couldn’t stop reading it too. This book is perfect for almost any occasion — a vacation book or cozy winter reading.
If you are looking for easy-to-read and fun books, I recommend checking out this list of books by Emily Henry.
Cleaning descriptions are my favorite here! Haha!
Neutral and negative reviews of The Maid (1-2 stars)
I agree with Emily about the autistic/neurodivergent labels. You always have this feeling in the book, but the author never confirms it.
I also picked up the book because of the fuss, but in the end, I liked it way more than Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine.
If you’d like to check out The Maid book on Amazon — here is the link.
Frequently Asked Questions About The Maid Book
What is the book Maid about?
The Maid by Nita Prose is a murder mystery story set in a prestigious hotel. The main heroine of the book is Molly, who is the person who finds the dead body and, as a result, is dragged into the murder investigation. Molly is a unique personality, with what some may identify as “weird social behavior,” yet lots of insights about the case. Ultimately, she is the hotel’s maid — someone who notices a lot, yet no one cares to see her.
Is The Maid about autism?
There is no clear reference about that in the book. The author herself never confirmed that The Maid is about autism. The only way Nita Prose has referred to her main character is as “socially awkward.” However, some readers believe that how Molly behaves in the book indicates a neuro-divergent personality or autism spectrum, while others think this may be a coincidence.
Is The Maid a good book club book?
The murder mystery of the book is gripping, and you can discuss what everyone’s thoughts were about the murder at the beginning of the book versus its end. However, the cherry on top is everything you can discuss about main characters, their actions, and the meanings of their words. There is much room to see the situations differently, making The Maid a good choice for a book club.
Where is Nita Prose from?
Nita Prose is from Toronto, Canada, where she currently lives and works.
What else has Nita Prose written?
The Maid is the only book Nita Prose has written as of March 2023, according to the official website of the author.
Is the Maid Nita Prose’s first book?
Yes, The Maid by Nita Prose is the author’s debut novel.
Where is the Maid book set
The Maid book is set in a fictional hotel — The Regency Grand Hotel.
Is The Maid book going to be a movie?
Yes. The Maid movie is currently in development.
The Maid book age rating
According to Common Sense, the book is suitable for ages 14+.
The Maid book characters
Here is the list of characters from The Maid:
- Molly Gray — is the main character of the story. She is the maid who works at the Regency Grand Hotel;
- Flora, “Gran” — Molly’s grandmother who has passed away recently;
- Charles Black — a wealthy businessman whose body Molly finds in the room;
- Giselle Black — victim’s second wife;
- Victoria Black — the daughter of Charles Black;
- Mr. Preston — the doorman at the Regency Grand Hotel;
- Mr. Snow — manager of the Regency Grand Hotel;
- Rodney Stiles — bartender at the Regency Grand Hotel;
- Juan Manuel — works as a dishwasher at the hotel;
- Detective Stark — a detective investigating the case of Mr. Black’s murder;
- Charlotte Preston — lawyer;
- Cheryl Green — Molly’s direct supervisor at the hotel;
- Sunshine — Molly’s colleague, another maid at the hotel;
- Sunitha — Molly’s colleague, also working as a maid;
- Wilbur Brown — the first boyfriend of Molly.
The Maid book ending explained
Spoilers alert — please do not read further if you don’t want to spoil the story details for you.
With the help of Mr. Preston, his daughter, and Juan Manuel, Molly testifies against Rodney in court and can put him in jail. In the Epilogue, we learn that Rodney didn’t kill Mr. Black.
The real murderer was Charles Black’s ex-wife, and Molly knew it all along and chose not to reveal this information to the public. A possible explanation for this behavior lies in the fact that Charles Black was an abuser, criminal, and cheater, and Molly decided to stay on the side of his ex-wife as she felt this was the right thing to do.
The Maid: Book Club Discussion Questions
Finally, let’s move to my favorite part — book club discussion questions. Below are some of the questions I came up with when reading the book, and I think you can use them for your book club discussion:
- In your opinion, what says in favor or against that Mr. Preston is Molly’s grandfather.
- How did you feel when Rodney was obviously making a fool of Molly? What would you do if you saw the same situation at your work? Would you do anything? Do people have to react to such things if they notice them?
- What do you think of the education and social behavior standards Molly’s grandmother taught her?
- Do you think Molly behaves in the way she behaves because of how her grandmother raised her or did she have an autism spectrum?
- From Molly’s perspective and the book’s ending, the maid is actually a perfect job for Molly. Can you think of other career choices that would work well for her?
- Who were your main suspects in Mr. Black murder? Did your suspicion change as you kept reading the book?
- What do you think of Giselle? What were your first thoughts, and how did they change as you progressed through the book?
- Do you think it is the right decision not to tell the police who is the real killer of Charles Black? Do you support Molly in this decision?
The Maid book by Nita Prose has been a breath of fresh air for me after struggling with picking up anything to read. The book is light and pleasant to listen to, and the reading experience is the same.
Here is the link to Amazon if you’d like to check it out.
Let me know your thoughts about the book in the comments down below. And hope you enjoyed this post.