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Discussing The Maid by Nita Prose: Ending and Other Spoilers

Discussing The Maid by Nita Prose: Ending and Other Spoilers

Let’s talk about the ending and other key twists from The Maid by Nita Prose.

Welcome to the spoiler discussion for The Maid! If you’re looking for a spoiler-free review, check out mine here. For book clubs looking for discussion questions, you can find that here.

I really enjoyed The Maid! I thought it was quite charming in many ways, which is not how you typically describe a murder mystery. I rooted for Molly throughout her journey and I really enjoyed her character development.

Overall, it’s a clever and entertaining read. Like all murder mysteries, this one features quite a few twists. And they were surprising!

First, a quick synopsis: Molly Gray is a maid at a five-star hotel. She has trouble interpreting the intentions of others and struggles in social settings. But she takes great pride in her work. Molly’s life is upended the day she enters the suite where she finds a famous guest is dead. Molly’s unusual demeanor results in her becoming the lead suspect. She’ll eventually work with a cast of characters to help clear her name.

The Big Reveals

Spoilers from here on out!

It initially appears that the mystery is fairly cut-and-dried. Rodney, the head bartender, ran a drug cartel at the hotel. He murdered Mr. Black. Case close.

But it wasn’t.

It turns out while Rodney is a very bad dude, he did not actually kill Mr. Black. It was Mr. Black’s first wife, the original Mrs. Black. I have to say, I was very surprised by this reveal! I had assumed it was Rodney all along.

I did reread a couple sections and the author does give hints that Molly knows more than what she’s letting on—to both the police and the reader.

For instance, toward the end, when Detective Stark clears Molly of all charges and says Rodney will go to jail for a long time, Molly says: “That seems appropriate. He’s a liar, an abuser, and a cheat.”

“He’s also a murderer,” Mr. Preston adds.

I say nothing.

On my initial read, I didn’t put much stock in that. But now, I can see she clearly knew Rodney did not commit the murder and also did not volunteer that information.

And when rereading Molly’s time on the stand, she never explicitly says she saw Rodney but implies it in a somewhat discreet way. Molly claims she simply told her version of the truth and how people interpret it, is up to them. But I think she knew what she was doing.

Molly and Gran

I truly enjoyed the dynamic and relationship between Molly and her gran. It was so sweet and lovely—well to a certain point in the book. I will say, Molly’s actions revealed at the end kind of clouded it for me a bit.

Gran’s pain became absolutely unbearable and they didn’t have the money to keep up with the pain prescriptions as needed or more hospital stays. So gran asked Molly to, I don’t know how else to say it, assist with her death. Molly put the remaining pills in her tea and then used gran’s pillow to suffocate her.

Again, this was gran’s idea and she pushed Molly to do it. But agh, that whole ordeal left me with a weird feeling!

A strange story choice, in my opinion. I get that this action helped with her eventual connection to Mrs. Black. But I don’t know, it was way out of left field for me. What are your thoughts about it?

The Ending

Mr. Black was a cheater, abuser and a criminal so no one was sad to see him gone. What happened the day of his murder is that Mrs. Black went to confront him and Mr. Black was pretty much drugged out but still managed to grab her by the wrists so hard that she would get bruises.

He eventually stumbled into bed and laid down. And that’s when Mrs. Black suffocated him with the pillow.

Upon this reveal, she says to Molly, “In my experience, there are times when a good person must do something that’s not quite right, but it’s still the right thing to do.”

This resonated with Molly as gran asked her to assist with her death, and while it was a horrible thing to ask, Molly felt it was the right thing to do for gran in the end. Molly says to herself, “mercy takes unexpected forms.”

Between that and the acknowledgement that many bad people seem to go free while they continue to hurt good people, Molly decided not to report that Mrs. Black was the actual murderer.

Tell Me Your Thoughts

I thought the twists was interesting—both the fact that Mrs. Black was the real murderer and that Molly knew all along. It showed Molly was more perceptive than she let on.

But still a bit strange regarding Molly’s actions with her gran’s death. And that’s one reason she bonded with Mrs. Black. It’s certainly a twist but an odd one at that.

One more item to point out that it seems Mr. Preston is actually Molly’s grandfather! I wonder why that was only heavily implied but Molly did not seem aware of it. Maybe a sequel is in store?

Still, I did very much enjoy the story, even if a couple parts were a little clunky.

What are your thoughts about the novel? Were you surprised by the twists? What do you hope to see in the movie version? Let me know below!


Tuesday 14th of May 2024

I just finished this book too! I do wonder if (the first) Mrs. Black was never even there for the murder. I suspect it was only ever Molly, just like it was only her with her Grandma at her deathbed. And just like she hid the truth of what she did to her Grandma from us readers, she can easily twist the truth to claim it was Mrs. Black using the newspaper articles about their marriage / inheritance drama to mislead us. She always stressed how much she hates cheaters and “bad eggs,” so I think it was Molly alone who killed Mr. Black, and she’s misleading us in the story she narrates just as much as she does with the police and her friends.

I believe the fact she can only enter her Grandma’s room after she’s cleared of Mr. Black’s murder confirms this. Seeing “the good” that comes from his murder, confirms her belief that bad deeds sometimes have to be done for the greater good. When she sees this come true for Mr. Black’s murder, she can then face what she did to her own Grandma.

Paula Barton

Sunday 30th of July 2023

Molly sees the world in black and white and has trouble interpreting the shades in between. Are the surnames of the victim and the accused of any significance?


Wednesday 14th of June 2023

I too thought it was Molly after reading what she did to her grandmother, and both died of asphyxiation, seeing both actions as "good". Firstly, her grandmother knew her cancer was incurable, that she didn't have much time left and was in so much pain, the pills , presumably Morphine, were no longer enough, hence the pain Molly witnessed her gran to be in. Gran did not want to die in hospital but in her own home, and told Molly to do it although Molly did not want to go through with it, she loved her gran and honoured her promise for her gran's sake. Hence, it was a "mercy killing". Secondly, Mr Black was "a bad egg". He abused both wives, Molly seeing the bruises on the second Mrs Black. I thought she was trying to help her by stopping the beatings. Mr Black portrayed as a mean, angry man who left his first wife and daughter with essentially no inheritance, was softened, in my opinion, by leaving his second wife the villa in the Cayman Islands. She did love him and I think he did love her, in his own way. It does not excuse the beatings though, but death? That was caused by betrayal [being left for a younger 2nd wife] and over money for the daughter. There is so much going on in this book that makes people think. Good books do that, and opinions may change, even mine perhaps on further analysis. The book was injected at times with a humour that made me laugh out loud, she has a rare insight into people's behaviour. Lastly, she showed that people within the autism range can be highly intelligent. What a person lacks in one area can be enhanced in other ways ie sight and hearing. Overall, a good book.


Monday 29th of August 2022

The thing that just doesn't make sense to me is that Mr. Preston didn't reunite with Molly's Grandmother after her family had disowned her. The only reason they broke up in the first place was because her family objected to the match. So with the family no longer in the picture, and Gran pregnant with Mr. Preston's baby, why not get married? I realize that's not central to the story but it's the one thing about the novel that really irritated me. On the positive side, it inspired me to clean my house!


Thursday 25th of August 2022

I love a good mystery! I'm not sure this qualifies, but it was interesting. There is real struggle with writing from a character's point of view, if it's not your own. I don't know if the author is neuro divergent, but I suspect not.

My thoughts about presenting a specific disability/difference/etc is that the author can make it what they want it to be. Monk? Didn't have OCD, he was just particular. People who are deaf don't always speak while signing (neither do their companions translate aloud).

I can't help but think that Molly's secrets and the things she tells people are awfully convenient. And she freezes or faints under strain. She doesn't pace, hit herself, pull hair, scream, or anything "unattractive".

Yeah, perfect neuro divergent Molly the Maid.