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Summary

We all keep secrets. Even from ourselves.

Mariana Andros is a psychologist struggling to make sense of life after the death of her husband. So when her niece, Zoe, calls - traumatised by the murder of her best friend - Mariana rushes to be with her and away from her own grief.

St. Christopher's College, Cambridge, is a closed world to most - but it's where Mariana and her late husband met as students. Days which seem long buried rise to the surface, as memory and mystery entangle Mariana in the secretive society of campus.

Because behind its idyllic beauty is a web of jealousy, lies and rage, which emanates from an exclusive set of students known only as The Maidens.

A group under a sinister and twisted influence.

And the group from which each victim will be chosen.

©2021 Alex Michaelides (P)2021 Orion Publishing Group

What listeners say about The Maidens

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Very Disappointing

The Silent Patient was one of my all time favourite books so I was excited to read The Maidens. I have to say I was really disappointed as I found it to be lacking in pace and tension with lots of dull dialogue. It is impossible not to draw comparisons with The Secret History, elite university, group of special students, charismatic professor, greek tragedy and murder, but any comparison should stop there as this book lacks everything that makes Secret History so fantastic. One of the reasons I liked Silent Patient was the psychopathology aspect and how the author added authentic details into the narrative which gave the plot another dimension and brought the characters to life. The author has tried to do the same with this book but it just does not work. I think one of the problems is the length of the book it is quite short and the action seems to take place over a week with actually not very much happening. I noted that one hour listening time was spent on a dinner party which did nothing to move the plot on. When I eventually reached the end I had guessed the killer so not at all surprised sadly the end was really far fetched and I still can't really understand what the motivation of the killer was. I also thought there were too many peripheral characters who added nothing to the story other than boring dialogue. I really wanted to like this book as I think this author has a very interesting point of view mixing psychotherapy theory with fiction, I will certainly give his third book a go when it is released.

5 people found this helpful

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Psychobabble

Having loved The Silent Patient, I was hugely disappointed with this new book.
The story gets lost in Mariana’s incessant therapy talk and navel-gazing, which might be interesting if it weren’t so repetitive.
It’s fine to have an annoying central character who jumps to conclusions but the big twist isn’t backed up by any sly clues within the story.
Despite this, the closed college setting is great and I like a good thinking-man’s murder so I hope he writes another.

2 people found this helpful

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surprisingly disappointing

If you enjoyed The Silent Patient and are thinking of trying this, don't bother. Ended up returning after only half way. Boring characters with dull narratives.

1 person found this helpful

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Not a great second book experience

Having read The Silent Patient last year, I was jumping up with joy when The Maidens was published. I loved The Silent Patient so much, I had great expectations from this book...

But unfortunately it did not deliver.

Bizarre story, lack of any tension, very static character interactions... I felt like the story was forced... Author has used similar technique he used in The Silent Patient but with this book, everything felt odd. Mariana being so sure about the murderer, without having a single clue felt like it was written for the sake of starting a story. Twists and turns felt artificial and immature. Even Mariana meeting Theo (from The Silent Patient) could not save the day I am afraid. It feels like, since the first book was so successful, the author thought to repeat the same style and produce another great book, which sadly did not work

It is very sad but I do not recommend this book to the readers/ listeners. I do hope the author writes another great book like The Silent Patient though...

1 person found this helpful

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A bit far fetched

I struggled with this complicated, rambling, confusing story line at times. Not as brilliant as his first book. Keep them coming though Alex...

1 person found this helpful

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Brilliant

This novel is so very good, full of twists.
So beautifully written
Loved it, kept finding things to do so I could listen to the story

1 person found this helpful

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great little story

well set out, clearly defined characters, great moments, relationships and dialogue. intriguing, flawed characters

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Gripping story

amazing gripping story right from the beginning.
I fell in love with this author and his writing style

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Disappointing

Disappointing. Better thrillers out there. Ending and twist left lots to be desired. Not particularly thrilling or page turning.

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  • mj
  • 01-03-22

A fantastic book

Another fantastic book from Alex Michalides. would highly recommend. Really interesting, fast paced and with a fabulous twist. Can't wait for another novel from this author.

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  • Richard Storer-Adam
  • 02-02-22

gripping

the plots twists come thick and fast. A very well written book that was hugely enjoyable.

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  • Justin Z.
  • 05-01-22

Brilliant, flawed psychothriller

Almost all aspects one looks for in crime fiction are ticked deftly by Michaelidis - he really delivers well. Unfortunately the book is marred, as the genre often is, by the balancing device he chooses to give us enough clues while hiding his clever denouement: the hapless bumbling protagonist who keeps missing the obvious in one situation after another. It detracts a bit from the agnorisis she has at the end, though overall the book leaves one well satisfied. The performance of Brealey is fine, but a little unremarkable and perhaps gives Marianna too much of an anodyne persona in the reader’a mind.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-10-21

A story heard before

The story itself makes you feel as if you've heard it a thousand times before. I figured out the plot in the first couple of chapters. The performance it extremely dull, it might have been better with a bigger variety of voices.
Alex's previous book had a phenomal twist at the end, true thriller. Unfortunately this book did not live up to the hype.

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  • miche11e
  • 10-09-21

Would not recommend

As many other readers, I enjoyed The Silent witness and recommended it to loads of people. This book is not it, very drawn out, the characters are simply not interesting, the author somewhat struggles with writing the female protagonist. I guessed the killer and many of you will too.
Hope that the third book will be miles better, I’ll give it a chance

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  • sabrine IDIHIA
  • 10-07-21

its addicting but has major flaws

spoilery revient.... I really enjoyed reading this book but it left a bitter sweet taste. many story lines were started and not tied up... the only explication I find is that its setting up a thirst book. but there was too much setting up that you thing its has something to do with the plot and nope... nothing at all... so I have a whole origin story of à caracters that really have no major rôle in the current plot. also why is everyone hitting on the main caracter.. like any man she speaks too wanna date her... unrealistic. also why she got her self involved in there murders and ignored her group thérapie patients is beyond me... quite unproffessional since she has no real reason or connection to the victims

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  • Web_mistress
  • 12-06-21

It is not bad at all but somewhat predictable

"Silent Patient" was totally mind-blowing. This one is not but very decent read anyway