An Anonymous Girl is the new novel of suspense by the writing duo that brought us the runaway, 2018 hit, The Wife Between Us. Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen have authored a book that held me fast in its sinister, sexy web of emotional control and psychological manipulation. Depicting a clever and captivating game of cat and mouse, with an ever-increasing sense of paranoia, An Anonymous Girl is pure, crime fiction fun!
An Anonymous Girl features Jessica Farris, a seemingly, slightly naive, somewhat impressionable millennial who supports herself in the gig economy by working all over New York City as a freelance, on-demand, make-up artist for an online beauty business. When an opportunity presents itself for Jessica to make some extra cash by participating in a mysterious psychological study, she pounces on the chance.
The researcher behind the study is Dr. Shields, whom we learn in time to be well-to-do, precise, clinical, and remote in nature, a professor at NYU, as well as a psychiatrist with a private practice.
Both of these central characters have layers of life experiences that are peeled back during the course of the novel, exhibiting what shapes their vulnerabilities, their strengths, and their motivations, eventually elevating the characters to a methodical, calculated “game of chess”. As the first hints of the psychological study’s origins are revealed, and which of the main, and supporting, characters to trust becomes less and less clear, the reader is hooked! At one point when I was reading, the tension was so tightly wound that I actually shrieked, mistaking a noise within my home for the sound of a door being slowly creaked open from the outside!
I am a reader who normally dislikes a lot of non-essential information in my stories, but for whatever reason, the numerous descriptions of physical characteristics as well as wardrobe specifics did not disrupt the flow of the narrative , and seemed to work for this particular tale. Likewise, I was not bothered by the need to suspend some disbelief. The authors held my attention throughout, and I just had to know how, and if, the story resolves (it does, and with a twist)!
Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen’s An Anonymous Girl is a thoroughly entertaining offering, that is sure to be popular among lovers of psychological suspense! A great start to 2019!
Best for Crime Fiction Readers:
Who are fans of psychological suspense.
Who appreciate crime fiction and mysteries that are set in New York City!
Who don’t mind suspending a bit of disbelief in the service of an entertaining plot.
Who don’t mind - or enjoy - reading about complicated, morally ambiguous characters, characters that are not always likeable.
Who enjoy reading novels of domestic suspense.
There are elements of amateur detective, and even spy, fiction in the novel, but I don’t want to muddy the waters too much. At its heart, An Anonymous Girl is the very essence of psychological suspense fiction!
Pages: 384 (Hardcover)
Here’s a video that the authors made in 2017 when they were preparing to release their debut, The Wife Between Us. They discuss their collaboration, and their writing process.
Read the publisher’s description of An Anonymous Girl:
The next novel of psychological suspense and obsession from the authors of the blockbuster bestseller The Wife Between Us.
When Jessica Farris signs up for a psychology study conducted by the mysterious Dr. Shields, she thinks all she’ll have to do is answer a few questions, collect her money, and leave. But as the questions grow more and more intense and invasive and the sessions become outings where Jess is told what to wear and how to act, she begins to feel as though Dr. Shields may know what she’s thinking…and what she’s hiding. As Jess’s paranoia grows, it becomes clear that she can no longer trust what in her life is real, and what is one of Dr. Shields’ manipulative experiments. Caught in a web of deceit and jealousy, Jess quickly learns that some obsessions can be deadly.
From the authors of the blockbuster bestseller The Wife Between Us comes an electrifying new novel about doubt, passion, and just how much you can trust someone.
AN ANONYMOUS GIRL has been optioned for a television series by eOne, with Sarah and Greer executive producing! (THE WIFE BETWEEN US has been optioned for film by Amblin Entertainment, with Sarah and Greer screenwriting the adaptation!)
MINM Overall Rating for the novel, An Anonymous Girl: 4.75/5 Stars