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Twenty-six-year-old editorial assistant Nella Rogers is tired of being the only Black employee at Wagner Books. Fed up with the isolation and microaggressions, she’s thrilled when Harlem-born and bred Hazel starts working in the cubicle beside hers. They’ve only just started comparing natural hair care regimens, though, when a string of uncomfortable events elevates Hazel to Office Darling, and Nella is left in the dust.
Then the notes begin to appear on Nella’s desk: LEAVE WAGNER. NOW.
It’s hard to believe Hazel is behind these hostile messages. But as Nella starts to spiral and obsess over the sinister forces at play, she soon realizes that there’s a lot more at stake than just her career.
Okay so The Other Black Girl is being pitched as one of the best thrillers of the year, except I don’t think it’s really a thriller? I went into this book with completely the wrong expectations and I was left disappointed by it.
I would say that “Get Out meets The Devil Wears Prada” is a good comparison, particularly the Get Out part since this book deals with microaggressions, isolation, racism, and all sorts. I think it’s a very good social commentary, but it’s not a very good thriller unfortunately.
I think the book is very slow to start, which is what initially put me off. The thrilling bits didn’t really start happening until over halfway through, and up until then it was more of a contemporary mystery type vibe. I think I’m just not a fan of slow burns in thrillers, I want all the action RIGHT NOW.
I think a lot of people will really enjoy this book and I have no doubt that many Black women and people of colour will find it relatable. Hearing the author talk in interviews about her experiences in publishing is eye opening and also gave a lot of context for this book. Unfortunately, The Other Black Girl just wasn’t the thriller for me.