The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I received a copy of this via Netgalley and finished reading it last night.
Set in prohibition era America it conjures up a descriptive historic atmosphere of speakeasies, bootleg alcohol and life on the fringes of polite society.
Narrated by Rose, a typist in a police precinct, dealing daily with hardened criminals, who tells us the story of how she became involved with Odalie the other typist who comes to work at the same precinct. Rose is a plain girl, who tells us of her upbringing in an orphanage and her rather bland life which seems to take on new colour and meaning as Odalie enters it. Bright, lively and modern, Odalie is everything Rose is not and an unlikely and quite disturbing friendship develops between the 2 girls which is destined to end disastrously.
Rose is an unreliable narrator and we soon begin to wonder at a few of her actions and, as she begins to reveal that she is reading us the story from her own journal, in the presence of a doctor we wonder what is going to happen to her as she gets sucked from her job on the right side of the law to a shady nightlife in illegal gin palaces and parties
There are lots of twists and turns in the story, and I found the story compelling, dark and gripping, however I did find the conclusion rather confusing, had to go back and read it twice and am still not completely sure exactly what was being inferred. Nevertheless its a fabulous story, set in a fascinating period and will be loved by readers who like a dark and convoluted tale.