Rose Baker seals men’s fates.
With a few strokes of the keys that sit before her, she can send a person away for life in prison. A typist in a New York City Police Department precinct on the lower east side, Rose is like a high priestess. Confessions are her job. The criminals admit to their transgressions, and Rose records their crimes. It is 1923, and while she may hear every detail about shootings, knifings, and murders, as soon as she leaves the interrogation room she is once again the weaker sex, best suited for filing and making coffee.
It is a new era for women, and New York City is a confusing time for Rose. Gone are the Victorian standards of what is acceptable. All around her women bob their hair short like men, they smoke, they go to speakeasies. But prudish Rose is stuck in the fading light of yesteryear, searching for the nurturing companionship that eluded her childhood and clinging to the Victorian ideal of sisterhood.
When glamorous Odalie, a new girl, joins the typing pool, despite her best intentions Rose falls under Odalie’s spell. As the two women navigate between the sparkling underworld of speakeasies by night, and their work at the station by day, Rose is drawn fully into Odalie’s high stakes world. And her fascination with Odalie turns into an obsession from which she may never recover.
What a book! After I finished reading (in a day), I directly jump to Mr. Google and desperate to find some discussions about the ending. Who is Rose? Who is Odelie? Who the f*** is Genevieve? Who kill Teddy? So much question left open for our own interpretation by Suzanne Rindell. I even dream about it when I was sleep. A book that can made us like that, is a great one!
With 1920 setting, I though this novel will be hard to read. But surprisingly, is a very engaging.
If you watch “The Great Gatsby 2013” it will be an advantage, since the author took it as an inspiration. And help us imagine what kind of life that Rose Baker have in 1923. How glamourous Odalie as the “It Girl” and make Rose can’t resist her charm.
It’s a a little bit suspense, thriller, mystery with plot that keep you guessing even after you close the book.
One thing for sure….After all, obsession will always lead to a fatal ending.