Read-Alikes for ‘The Maidens’ by Alex Michaelides | LibraryReads

LibraryReads and Library Journal offer read-alikes for patrons waiting for The Maidens by Alex Michaelides.

The Maidens, by Alex Michaelides (Celadon), is the top holds title of the week (6/14/21). LibraryReads and Library Journal offer read-alikes for patrons waiting for this buzziest book.

Mariana is no stranger to death. She lost her young English mother to cancer and her distant older sister to an accident, and her complicated Greek father collapsed in an olive grove. The worst though was losing her husband Sebastian, just a year ago. As a psychotherapist, Mariana knows the steps of working through grief. Now death arrives again. When her devastated niece Zoe, a student, calls to say her friend Tara has been murdered, Mariana returns to the scene of the crime, the University of Cambridge and its familiar ivy-covered grounds; this was the same place she first met Sebastian. When more ritualistic deaths follow, it is clear a serial killer is targeting the Maidens, a group of nine Cambridge students who are under the tutelage of Edward Fosca, a charismatic classics professor who maintains a mesmerizing hold over the impressionable young women, including Tara. Mariana is convinced that Edward is the murderer and sets a determined course to prove it. VERDICT Michaelides (The Silent Patient) skillfully infuses this mystery with stories of death and life from Greek mythology and motifs of darkness and light that suggest all is not as it seems; indeed, several disturbing characters cast doubt on the killer’s identity. While the tension could have been heightened, and the unforeseen conclusion tests believability, this is intriguing psychological suspense.—Reviewed by Gloria Drake, Oswego P.L. Dist., IL, May 28, 2021 


Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo (Flatiron: Macmillan; LJ starred review)
Appeared on the Oct 2019 LibraryReads list

“Alex has always been able to see ghosts, and this talent uniquely qualifies her to become part of the Lethe, a group that regulates the eight magical societies at Yale. When a murder happens nearby the campus Alex suspects that a society has their hand in this and it’s not just a normal homicide. For fans of urban fantasy and secret societies.”—Amy Verkruissen, Calcasieu Parish P.L., Lake Charles, LA


Final Girls by Riley Sager (Dutton)
Appeared on the July 2017 LibraryReads list

“When Quincy Carpenter survived a massacre while the rest of her friends were murdered, the press labeled her a ‘Final Girl’—part of a group that consisted of two other women who were the only ones to survive their own tragedies. Quincy has no desire to claim this label and wants to move on. But when one of the final girls dies, and the other confronts Quincy, claiming that a killer might be targeting them, Quincy’s new life unravels. Readers will be invested in seeing if Quincy can retain her status as the last one standing.”—Sharon Layburn, South Huntington P.L., NY


Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas (Morrow)
Suggested by the LibraryReads Board

“With an abundance of influential graduates, exclusive Catherine House College is well known, but its inner workings remain shrouded in mystery. Not an outstanding student and lacking a stable, supportive family, Ines only applied to the school after being encouraged by her favorite teacher, believing she wouldn’t have been accepted. After arriving on campus, Ines finds herself among a diverse group of students with varying academic and social goals, and everyone seems to have a secret, including Ines. With a constant influx of half-told truths and unclear motivations, the tone of the story is dark and discomforting. Adding to the fearful feeling is the use of a closed-off, baroque-style mansion with secluded nooks perfect for a clandestine rendezvous. As Ines, and most of the other characters, reveal small pieces of their stories very slowly, it’s difficult for readers to engage fully with what is happening. A central mystery surrounds the plasma research conducted at Catherine House, but it doesn’t develop much tension, even as portions of inhumane, secret experiments are exposed. VERDICT Readers looking for a strong atmospheric setting in the Gothic style will be drawn in by this psychological thriller. Less satisfying are the interesting, if underdeveloped characters.”—Reviewed by Stacey Hayman, Rocky River P.L., OH, May 8, 2020

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