I’m trying to sort out my thoughts after reading An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen. This is their second book (I read their first book The Wife Between Us last year) and I have to say it wasn’t as good as their debut. But it was still a fast-paced thriller which had me burning through the pages to get to the end.
An Anonymous Girl is about twenty-something Jessica who is a struggling makeup artist living in New York. Money is an issue for her as she is paying for her disabled sister to get therapy (unbeknown to her parents) as well as trying to pay rent and bills.
When Jessica hears by chance about a psychology study that is paying great money for young female participants, she seizes the chance to participate. She then finds herself sucked into a study about ethics and morality run by the mysterious Dr Shields. Soon the study becomes more and more intrusive and starts to take over Jessica’s life. Who is Dr Shields and what is the secret agenda behind the study?
If you like psychological thrillers, An Anonymous Girl is a good one. It has plenty of plot twists and turns — some twists I guessed and others surprised me. The story is told from two perspectives: Jessica’s and Dr Shields’. I struggled a little bit with Dr Shields’ point-of-view because it was narrated in such a robotic, clinical tone of voice. I get that Dr Shields is a psychologist but I found this tone of voice a bit grating.
It’s also a plot that asks you to suspend disbelief. The plot seems a bit implausible, but then again a lot of ethically questionable studies have occurred in real life so it’s not outside the realm of possibility. I might not have particularly cared about any of the characters but I was keen to see how it would end. It was just a pity the ending was a bit disappointing. Still, I’m glad I read it and will probably read the next book by this writing duo.
Verdict: An entertaining read for psychological thriller fans.