A Book Review: The Other Typist

When I first saw this book I was intrigued by the title. I spent my life as a secretary and was blessed by God to be a fast and pretty accurate typist. Although I hated being a secretary (and the more glorified title of “administrative assistant”), I did learn to love to type. I used to say, “Just sit me in front of a computer and give me straight typing and I’ll be happy”.

So, when I saw this book I knew I had to have it.

First, the synopsis as printed on the back of the book: “Confessions are Rose Baker’s job. A typist for the New York City Police Department, she sits in judgment like a high priestess. Criminals come before her to admit their transgressions, and, with a few strokes of the keys before her, she seals their fate. But while she may hear about shootings, knifings, and crimes of passion, as soon as she leaves the room, she reverts to a dignified and proper lady. Until Odalie joins the typing pool.

As Rose quickly falls under the stylish, coquettish Odalie’s spell, she is lured into a sparkling underworld of speakeasies and jazz. And what starts as simple fascination turns into an obsession from which she may never recover.”

To me, this book was a prime example of what can happen if you fall into the wrong crowd. I had my doubts about the type of person Odalie was from the very beginning. I didn’t trust her. And Rose shouldn’t have.

I saw myself in Rose – young (well, I was once!), naive, wanting to fit in and be accepted. And when this new girl comes on the scene who is everything Rose is not – and was accepted by her – well, I can see how Rose followed after her like a little puppy dog just wanting to be petted.

This book was set in the 1920s – the days of prohibiition, speakeasies, and jazz. And sin abounded! By the end of the book, Rose was a changed woman – or was she?

I liked this book. It wasn’t exactly what I thought it was when I first started reading it, but that’s ok. I’m not even sure what I thought it would be. Yes, I would recommend this book. The end is where it gets really exciting!

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