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The Other Typist  By  cover art

The Other Typist

By: Suzanne Rindell
Narrated by: Gretchen Mol
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Publisher's Summary

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, Rose is like a high priestess. Confessions are her job. 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.

This is a new era for women, and New York is a confusing place for Rose. Gone are the Victorian standards of what is acceptable. All around her women bob their hair, they smoke, they go to speakeasies. Yet prudish Rose is stuck in the fading light of yesteryear, searching for the nurturing companionship that eluded her childhood. 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 soon her fascination with Odalie turns into an obsession from which she may never recover.

©2013 Suzanne Rindell (P)2013 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"From the first page [I] was absorbed...Suzanne Rindell’s story of a 1920s police stenographer who becomes increasingly obsessed with a glamorous new typist reminds me at points of Notes on a Scandal and Patricia Highsmith, but has creepy charms all its own.” (The Paris Review)

“Take a dollop of Alfred Hitchcock, a dollop of Patricia Highsmith, throw in some Great Gatsby flourishes, and the result is Rindell’s debut, a pitch-black comedy about a police stenographer accused of murder in 1920s Manhattan.... A deliciously addictive, cinematically influenced page-turner, both comic and provocative.” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) 

 “Rindell's debut is a cinematic page-turner.” (Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about The Other Typist

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  • Overall
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Rose Baker Keeps Us Guessing

Rose Baker is a typist in a New York police station during the Prohibition era. She's alone in the world and starved for human connection. When the beautiful Odalie befriends her, Rose begins to experience the life she craves, but disapproves of. Lots of great plot twists keep the action moving. I won't spoil the end, except to say that the ambiguous conclusion is surprisingly satisfying. I'll be interested to see what Rindell comes up with for her next novel.

6 people found this helpful

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LOVED IT!

This seems to be the kind of book you either love or hate. I am in the former category. First off it was an original story with interesting characters and good descriptions of the time period. I loved Gretchen Mol's narration unlike some others, I though the pace and tone was perfect for the story and the characters. The ending was ambiguous and can really be debated. I think I would like to read the hard copy knowing the ending and see what I missed the first time. All in all, its a pleasant way to spend your time and your credits! I am going to recommend to my book club! #fairytaletwists #dark #mindbending #tagsgiving # sweepstakes

5 people found this helpful

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Gretchen Mol Brings Something Special

This is an excellent book, and it's hard to review without giving spoilers. It's a story about how crafty people can lead a double life by playing others for fools. But, even more, it's a story about how truly crafty people can actually fool themselves about the double life they are already living.

Gretchen Moll adds something special to the narration, not just because she's good at giving personality to the different characters, male and female (and she is). The TV characters she plays in Life on Mars and Boardwalk Empire inform her reading here, but her performance is different enough to keep things interesting.

In short, it's a great book, well-narrated. I highly recommend it, especially for book clubs, where readers will have a lot to discuss afterwards!

5 people found this helpful

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Intriguing, Original Story

Any additional comments?

Interesting tale about 1920's Prohibition Era NYC. The story centers around two young women who work as typists in a police precinct. This was really intriguing novel that grabs your attention right from the start. Difficult to review since the book really should be read completely "blind" as the author intended. If you are planning on reading this one, do yourself a favor and don't read any reviews, etc. beyond what is written on the inside book jacket.

5 people found this helpful

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Loved This One !

I really enjoyed this one ! I loved the Gatsbyesque setting and the fascinating first-person narrator. And I especially LOVED the ending ! Soooo unusual. Excellent reading by Gretchen Mol. Her almost emotionless dictation suits the character.

4 people found this helpful

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Fix a Martini & Enjoy!

Really enjoyed! At first I wasn't too keen on the narrator's tone....but then she became Rose...or is she Odalee, or is she Genevra? :)

4 people found this helpful

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Okay story

This Other Typist provides an interesting enough background of the 1920s era (complete with prohibition, the mood of the times, and great settings) but for me the actual story was contrived and hard to believe. Plus the naivete of the protagonist was ridiculous to the extreme.

I won't repeat what others have already written with respect to the theme and agree that, up front, the less you know about it the better. Probably my biggest complaint is with the narrator. Admittedly there are many run-on sentences within the text, but that alone isn't always a bad thing. However, the narrator lacked helpful pauses and read with so little inflection that even i felt out of breath by the time the full stop presented itself.

In my opinion it's probably best to forego the audio version of this book and maybe read it instead.

3 people found this helpful

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Worth the Listen

It took about 2.5 hrs before things got going in this audiobook and even then things would drag at times throughout. It has a lot of character development as opposed to action, I think that's why it seemed to drag to me. However with that said I would recommend listening to it. The story is interesting and well written. The characters, because of the character development given to them by the author (especially the main character) really pull the story along without a lot of action. The narrator is very good. The main character is quite complex. I thought I had her figured out but she is a doozy! Have fun with this one, it is something of a mystery.

2 people found this helpful

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Worth every minute!

It took a while for me to really get into this story, but once it had sucked me in I was completely entranced. The narrator was excellent and her voice was perfect for the characters and time period.

2 people found this helpful

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Didn't see it coming

This is an evocative, fast-moving book about two women, one innocent and starry-eyed, the other hard-bitten and amoral, and the relationship they develop. We are drawn into Odalie's net with Rose, and learn about her as Rose does. Rose, however, doesn't guess whom she is dealing with until it is too late for her. I imagine that she just didn't want to face facts, and neither did I.

Gretchen Mol is a terrific reader. I'll look for more books she narrates.

2 people found this helpful