An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen, Review by Corinne Donnelly

User Rating: 6
An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen, Review by Corinne Donnelly

An Anonymous Girl is the second collaborative novel written by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen. Their first novel, The Wife Between Us, was a huge hit this year and has since been optioned for a film. While I have not read their first novel, I suspect this one will be just as successful, despite my dislike for many elements within it.

An Anonymous Girl follows two characters: Jessica Farris, a participant in a morality study, and Dr. Shields, the psychiatrist holding the study. The two main characters narrate alternating chapters. Jessica’s chapters are written in first person, while Dr. Shields’ chapters are written in second person in the form of clinical notes about Jessica.

The structure of the novel is its greatest strength. The reader jumps head-first into the mind of Jessica, but knows little to nothing about Dr. Shields. As Dr. Shields’ study treads over the line of professionalism and into dangerous territory, the mystery behind the psychiatrist’s background and motivations deepens.

The plot is provocative and delivers a suspenseful and fast-paced story, but the characters are either too impassive or too exaggerated. There’s no happy medium. This is a common criticism I have of thrillers, yet I can often overlook it if the twists are stimulating and unpredictable. Unfortunately, I usually saw the reveals coming, and even when I didn’t, they were unsatisfying. There are also a lot of them, perhaps too many, as they become tiresome less than half-way through the novel.

The authors present the theme, morality, in the synopsis, and it is highly prevalent in the plot. Strangely though, it is not analyzed past the surface level. Morality is such a nuanced subject with endless angles to delve into, but the novel focuses mainly on mental instability and obsession. It’s disappointing that morality and ethics has been shoehorned into only the topic of mental illness.

If you’re looking for a quick read, An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen will most likely satisfy. Its unique premise may make up for superficial characters and a somewhat predictable plot, especially if you’re more interested in the journey than the pay-off at the end.

An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen will be released by St. Martin’s Press on January 8th, 2019.

Disclaimer: I received an Advanced Reader Copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Summary
An Anonymous Girl follows Jessica Farris, a participant in a morality study held by the mysterious Dr. Shields. As the study crosses into dangerous territory, Jessica suspects that Dr. Shields' motivations may not be as harmless as they seem.
6
Fair
Written by
Corinne Donnelly is a writer, actor, and singer who currently lives in Orange County, CA. She has written poetry for various literary journals, and helped peer-edit and review the novel Eyes Open by K.L. Glanville. When she lived in Los Angeles briefly after college, she acted professionally, appearing in commercials and music videos, as well as background acted on network TV series such as Parks and Recreation, New Girl, and 90210. At its heyday, she freelanced as a writer and editor for the official fan-site of Rupert Grint, the actor who played Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter movies. In her free-time, Corinne loves to read, write, perform onstage, and attend midnight showings of her favorite movie series.

Your Vote

1 0

Lost Password

Please enter your username or email address. You will receive a link to create a new password via email.

Sign Up