Series: The Housemaid (#1 of 2)
By: Freida McFadden
Narrator: Lauryn Allman
Publication Date: 04/26/2022
My Rating: 5 Stars +
“Welcome to the family,” Nina Winchester says as I shake her elegant, manicured hand.
I smile politely, gazing around the marble hallway. Working here is my last chance to start fresh. I can pretend to be whoever I like. But I’ll soon learn that the Winchesters’ secrets are far more dangerous than my own…
Every day I clean the Winchesters’ beautiful house from top to bottom. I collect their daughter from school. And I cook a delicious meal for the whole family before heading up to eat alone in my tiny room on the top floor.
I try to ignore how Nina makes a mess just to watch me clean it up. How she tells strange lies about her own daughter. And how her husband Andrew seems more broken every day. But as I look into Andrew’s handsome brown eyes, so full of pain, it’s hard not to imagine what it would be like to live Nina’s life. The walk-in closet, the fancy car, the perfect husband.
I only try on one of Nina’s pristine white dresses once. Just to see what it’s like. But she soon finds out… and by the time I realize my attic bedroom door only locks from the outside, it’s far too late.
But I reassure myself: the Winchesters don’t know who I really am.
They don’t know what I’m capable of…
An unbelievably twisty read that will have you glued to the pages late into the night. Anyone who loves The Woman in the Window, The Wife Between Us, and The Girl on the Train won’t be able to put this down!
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THE HOUSEMAID (Housemaid #1 of 2) is definitive proof that it's impossible to be disappointed by #1 Amazon bestselling author Freida McFadden, who gets better and better with each book!
A dangerously wicked, addictive cat-and-mouse game between Millie (recently paroled-now housemaid) and a wealthy family—The Winchesters (Nina and Andrew). However, who is the cat, and who is the mouse? Who is the prey, and who is the predator?
Let the games begin!
I loved the AUDIOBOOK 🎧 narrated by Lauryn Allman for an outstanding performance! An engaging listening experience. Listened in one sitting—unputdownable.
A deliciously intense ride! McFadden is a brilliant writer at the top of her game. In THE HOUSEMAID, she delivers yet another stellar thriller packed with menace, tension, and wild twists, laced with nuanced insight and characterization. Exploring the evils that lurk behind closed doors with disturbing family dynamics.
Loaded with Freida's signature trademarks: A seemingly perfect family home with an underdog outsider to root for. McFadden has some mad skills and tools which make all her thrillers highly addictive, teasingly making you want to binge-read them all—Compelling characters with something to hide, one twist after another, and her dark sense of humor.
Divided into three parts:
Part One: Millie (3 mos. earlier)
Part Two: Nina
Part Three: Nina/Millie/Andrew
Millie is living in her car and needs a job. No one will hire her after serving the last ten years in prison. (she was only helping out a friend).
When Millie applies to an ad working for a wealthy family in an upscale neighborhood—Nina Winchester, and her husband as a live-in housemaid, she cannot even begin to get excited yet. They undoubtedly will do a background check. She can only hope they do not. She needs this job to get out of her car.
The interview goes well, and Nina seems nice. She sees her room. Unlike the rest of the stunning home, it is modest and located in the attic with a small cot and one small window overlooking the backyard. The only thing is the door locks from the outside, not inside.
There is something about this room that is scary. Little does she know what will happen in this room or what has occurred.
When she inquires about it, Nina says it was formerly a supply closet. If she gets the job, she cannot be picky. The room is better than sleeping in her car. Another red flag, the landscaper tells her to watch out. Danger. What has happened in this house?
To her surprise, she receives the call and lands the job. Millie is delighted. However, the neat and beautiful home she saw in the interview is now nasty and dirty. There is so much work to do.
Shortly after that, begins a series of manipulation, verbal abuse, and gaslighting from Nina and her nine-year-old she-devil daughter, Cece. Nina becomes increasingly unhinged, and the strange occurrences multiply.
Millie keeps her head down, cleans the house so it is immaculate, shops and prepares delectable meals, runs errands, and keeps everything running smoothly. However, daily she has to contend with manipulation from Nina and her daughter.
Millie snoops into the medicine cabinets and finds her meds. She is either bipolar or schizophrenic! However, she must remain in Nina's good graces because she needs this job.
But these games are getting tiresome— and Nina accuses her of stealing her clothes when she gave them to her. She later confirms she has mental issues from other mothers at Cece's school.
Nina's husband, Andrew Winchester, seems nice. (however, is he)? How does he tolerate a wife like this? He never complains, and he is so good-looking, and Millie secretly has a crush on him. However, she does not want to make Nina jealous, so she keeps her distance.
What kind of game is everyone playing?
This is NOT a normal triangle domestic thriller. It is so much more. There are many complex layers and the author maneuvers like a rock star. As readers, we become engrossed in the inner worlds of these two women, Nina and Millie. Who is good, and who is evil? Each with its agenda. The author slowly unravels each.
If this is not intriguing enough, we add a third to the triangle, Andrew. Even though he does not have a dedicated chapter, we get the full Andrew in Part Three, and also becomes one of the main characters along with the two ladies. His character further adds to the complexity.
Nina is using Millie. We soon learn about the relationship between Nina and her husband, Andrew, in Part Two. Your loyalties may change. Are we pulling for Nina or Millie, or both? Maybe Millie is not as bad as we thought. It is all a game. Who is collateral damage?
Millie uses Nina for a job and a place to live. However, will Mille get pulled into this sick game and put herself in further danger? She has street smarts, but she never expected this evil behind closed doors of the upscale rich, upstanding community and successful
When you get to Part Three in the attic room, it is propulsive, non-stop action, nerve-wracking, edge of your seat, WIlD and INTENSE!
Does this family understand what Mille is capable of? Will she beat Nina and Andrew at their game? Will Millie and Nina join forces?
OMG! What a story. What a book! Never read anything like it. The satisfying conclusion exceeded my expectations and then some! Cannot wait for the sequel and hope this will be an ongoing series.
With an adrenaline-fueled plot and an expertly drawn cast of characters, McFadden pulls out all the stops, leading readers down a dark, twisty path teeming with secrets, obsession, and revenge, leaving you holding your breath.
THE HOUSEMAID is a psychological-suspense fan's dream with a heroine you'll want to root for and a story you'll want to keep reading late into the night. A must-read! My top books of 2022!
If you pick up just one thriller this year, make it this one. I cannot wait for you to meet Mille and look forward to catching up with her again in Book #2!
The author pulls you to the edge of your seat with her razor-sharp plotting and a keen eye for the darker side of human nature. A witty and clever multi-level psychological mystery that takes readers on a wild ride of revenge and obsession. Fans of domestic suspense will adore Freida McFadden's books!
I missed this book when it came out and was not on my radar for some reason. That has changed. My Freida reading experience:
I discovered NEVER LIE audiobook on NetGalley (Nov 2022). Sounded great, and requested it. I loved it, and before I finished, I started googling the author and discovered THE HOUSEMAID. Quickly purchased the ebook and audiobook. Read in one sitting and was blown away (just now getting around to my review). I then pre-ordered the sequel, The Housemaid's Secret (Feb 2023).
Straightaway purchased the e-book/audiobooks and read:
(Both, 5 Stars)
Since then, have purchased the remainder of her books (e-book and all the ones on audio) and will be starting on them in between my new ARC releases.
Just finished, Brain Damage (loved-5 Stars) and currently reading, The Locked Door. (Note: Do not care for the narrator of The Locked Door and had to return the audiobook. Shaina Summerville's voice was nerve grinding! I enjoyed all the other narrators from previous books, so hopefully, they do not use her again. Back to the e-book.
This is an author you must read if you enjoy fun psychological thrillers. Do not get too serious with them. They do not fit in a box. This is not cop procedurals/crime fiction like Lisa Gardner and Karin Slaughter. They are fun and have deliciously wicked characters and dark humor with more highly innovative plot twists than you can imagine. (like Kaira Rouda, Elle Cosimano, and Janet Evanovich novels). They are highly addictive and entertaining. You will read them in one sitting! A talented author.
Loaded with surprises and shocking secrets, you must read. For fans of Kimberly Belle, Kaira Rouda, Mary Kubica, and BA Paris.
More about THE HOUSEMAID SERIES & AUTHOR
THE HOUSEMAID (April 2022) is already a global bestseller (over 100K copies), and its sequel, The Housemaid's Secret is coming (Feb 2023). Film/TV rights have already been snapped up, which is not surprising!
Look for the mass market paperback, coming up from Little, Brown's Sphere imprint in (Dec 2022) and both The Housemaid and the sequel will be published in trade paperback by Grand Central Publishing in the US.
Freida McFadden has self-published thirteen psychological thrillers and became an Amazon #1 Bestseller in the US with The Locked Door.
Not sure how she cranks out all these fab stories, a #1 Amazon and USA Today bestselling author and a practicing physician specializing in brain injury who has penned multiple Kindle bestselling psychological thrillers and medical humor novels.
@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks
My Rating: 5 ⭐ STARS +++
Pub Date: April 26, 2022
The Housemaid Series
Book #2 of 2
The Housemaid's Secret: A totally gripping psychological thriller with a shocking twist
by Freida McFadden (Author)
“Don’t go in the guest bedroom.” A shadow falls on Douglas Garrick’s face as he touches the door with his fingertips. “My wife… she’s very ill.” As he continues showing me their incredible penthouse apartment, I have a terrible feeling about the woman behind closed doors. But I can’t risk losing this job—not if I want to keep my darkest secret safe…
It’s hard to find an employer who doesn’t ask too many questions about my past. So I thank my lucky stars that the Garricks miraculously give me a job, cleaning their stunning penthouse with views across the city and preparing fancy meals in their shiny kitchen. I can work here for a while, stay quiet until I get what I want.
It’s almost perfect. But I still haven’t met Mrs Garrick, or seen inside the guest bedroom. I’m sure I hear her crying. I notice spots of blood around the neck of her white nightgowns when I’m doing laundry. And one day I can’t help but knock on the door. When it gently swings open, what I see inside changes everything…
That’s when I make a promise. After all, I’ve done this before. I can protect Mrs Garrick while keeping my own secrets locked up safe.
Douglas Garrick has done wrong. He is going to pay. It’s simply a question of how far I’m willing to go…
This absolutely explosive and shockingly twisty sequel to international bestseller The Housemaid will keep you racing through the pages late into the night. Anyone who loves The Perfect Marriage by Jeneva Rose, The Woman in the Window and Gone Girl will be totally hooked! This book can also be enjoyed as a standalone. READ MORE
About the Author
#1 Amazon and USA Today bestselling author Freida McFadden is a practicing physician specializing in brain injury who has penned multiple Kindle bestselling psychological thrillers and medical humor novels. She lives with her family and black cat in a centuries-old three-story home overlooking the ocean, with staircases that creak and moan with each step, and nobody could hear you if you scream. Unless you scream really loudly, maybe.